Johns Hopkins beats Randolph-Macon, 42-21, to advance to D-III second round for third straight year

Facing a football team known for its suffocating run defense, Johns Hopkins came out in Saturday's Division III tournament opener intent on establishing its passing game.

The strategy paid dividends in a 42-21 win over Randolph-Macon at Homewood Field.


Quarterback Jonathan Germano threw for 418 yards and four touchdowns, and wide receiver Luke McFadden caught 11 passes for 222 yards — the third most in school history — as the Blue Jays built an early 21-0 lead to advance to the second round for the third straight year and earn coach Jim Margraff his 200th career win.

"I thought our guys came out and played fantastic early on, particularly on offense," Margraff said. "We needed to jump on them early. They were nationally ranked defensively against the run, so we felt it was important to establish the pass game. If they played that many people up toward the football, we thought we had some fast guys and some tall guys that could win some matchups."

Hopkins (11-0), ranked No. 6 in the American Football Coaches Association's Division III poll and No. 10 by D3football.com, advances to Saturday's second round to face defending national champion Mount Union, a 38-21 winner over Hobart. The site and time will be determined Sunday.

The Blue Jays threatened to run away early, opening the game with two touchdowns in a span of 1:23.

After driving 76 yards on its opening drive, capped by Germano's 3-yard keeper, the Hopkins got the ball back when defensive back Michael Curry intercepted Burke Estes' tipped pass at the Blue Jays 42. Germano found wide receiver Bradley Munday down the sideline on a 25-yard pass, setting up Dane Rogerson's 2-yard run with 6:58 left in the first quarter.

Minutes later, Germano capped another 60-yard drive with a 9-yard pass to McFadden as Hopkins extended its lead to 21-0 and amassed 200 yards of offense in the first quarter.

"They were tall, they were fast, they were quick and they made plays," Randolph-Macon coach Pedro Arruza said. "Today was an eye-opening experience, to say the least."

McFadden added a 43-yard touchdown reception 1:38 into the third, helping Hopkins pull away after the Yellow Jackets (9-2) had pulled to within two scores. It capped a career day for the 6-foot-3 sophomore from Florida, who had just 325 receiving yards and four touchdowns all season.

"There were definitely certain plays that we really wanted to hit on and connect, and we were able to do that today," McFadden said. "Then it's just John finding the right guy, and today it happened to be me."

Munday finished with eight catches for 104 yards and two touchdowns for the Blue Jays, who will be tasked with winning a second-round game for the first time since 2009. A year ago, Hopkins dropped a 42-37 shootout to Wesley after losing second-round games in 2014 and 2012.

"The thing you learn is that the deeper you go in the playoffs, they're all really good teams," Margraff said. "There are only 16 left right now. We're happy with being there ... and well get another opportunity next week."

Recommended on Baltimore Sun