Cal Lutheran began defense of its SCIAC championship with a 24-22 victory over the University of Redlands at Ted Runner Stadium.
The kickers proved to be the difference in the game as Cal Lu’s Jackson Damron nailed a 35-yard field goal with 11:35 left for what turned out to be the deciding points.
Redlands (2-1) got the ball back with 2:07 to go. It all came down to a 40-yard field goal try by Joe MacMillan with 25 seconds left. The kick really never had a chance as the Cal Lutheran line got good push and the kick never really got up.
The Bulldogs were down 21-9 at the half but got big plays from its veterans in the secondary to get back in the game. Mike Nicolini returned an interception 61 yards for a score. Three plays later Josh Herrera returned one 42 yards to set up another score that put the Bulldogs in front 22-21.
But it didn’t last.
The only consolation for the Bulldogs is that it looks like there is some balance in the SCIAC so there could be an upset along the way that might give the Bulldogs a shot if they can run the table.
In other games Claremont-Mudd-Scripps beat La Verne 20-14 and Occidental barely got by Whittier 25-22. Pomona-Pitzer lost to non-conference foe Chapman 41-17.