SCIAC Football: Week 4 Recap, Week 5 Preview, and Power Rankings

Week 4 witnessed dominant performances: CMS Stags cruise, Redlands Bulldogs surge, while La Verne's offense struggles.

CMS's QB Walter Kuhlenkamp
Source: Eva Fernandez - CMS Athletics

Week 4’s slate provided a small dose of Division III football in the Pacific Northwest. Unfortunately, none of the games this past week were competitive, with the only real surprise being Chapman's struggles.

The Stags and Sagehens both took care of business ahead of their rivalry game this Saturday. La Verne still hopes someone can step up on offense to give them some hope this season.

Week 4 Results

Cal Lutheran Kingsmen 28 | CMS Stags 49

After the Stags ground out a tight victory over the George Fox Bruins, this game against Cal Lutheran must have felt like a breath of fresh air.

There was not anything particularly explosive about the Stags offense on this day, but they just kept scoring. After a single touchdown in a tied first quarter, CMS scored 2 touchdowns in each quarter as they pulled away.

RB Justin Edwards returned to the field for the Stags after leaving last week's game with an injury, but he did not seem like himself with only 55 yards on 19 carries, though this included 3 TDs.

Once again, QB Walter Kuhlenkamp dominated the stat sheet for the Stags as he tallied 90 yards and 2 TDs on the ground in addition to 229 yards through the air on 18/29 passing. They will face a tougher test this weekend against the rival Sagehens.

Cal Lutheran QB JP Andrade had a day of ups and downs. He still threw for 264 yards on 23/38 passing with 2 TDs, but was also sacked 3 times along with 2 interceptions. His second INT of the game was returned for a TD with about 4 minutes left in the game and with CMS up 49-21, the Stags pulled him for backup James McNamara.

Their struggles on offense may be more indicative of facing a strong defense than a lack of talent. The Kingsmen proved they can be dangerous through the air in their out of conference games earlier this year. However, the Kingsmen must find a way to move the ball on the ground as they've struggled to accumulate yards and that will create more difficult situations for the pass game.

Redlands Bulldogs 38 | Chapman Panthers 21

Despite several inconsistencies to their game, the Redlands Bulldogs are a threat to make the SCIAC Championship Game.

Tyler Tremain finally had a breakout performance as the Bulldogs quarterback completed 17/26 for 270 yards and 4 TDs and an interception, though the Panthers could not sack him on this night.

The Bulldogs also ran for 184 yards on the night, led by 131 from RB Tony Williams Jr.

Markelle Raymond had 115 yards on 4 catches and a TD while Evan Aguon had 5 receptions in the short game for 60 yards and tallied 3 TDs.

Chapman had early success, hitting a 76-yard TD on a flea-flicker and took a 21-14 lead with under 4 minutes remaining in the first half.

But that was the closest the Panthers came to winning. The Bulldogs would tie the game just before half and they wouldn't look back.

Redlands came out firing in the 2nd half, scoring twice in the first 10 minutes. It felt like those 21 unanswered to that point broke the Panthers’ spirit as Chapman pulled Espinoza for Tyler Pacheco.

Pacheco did not have much success either as Chapman was shut out in the 2nd half, much to the disappointment of the home crowd. He appears to be an even better athlete than Espinoza. Nonetheless, he is very raw as a passer so we’ll see what happens with him in the future.

The quarterback numbers show the lack of consistency throughout the game as Espinoza threw for 175 yards on only 6/14 passing with 2 TDs while Pacheco followed him with another 69 yards on 6/11 passing and an interception.

RB Isaiah Woods who totaled 94 yards on the ground on 17 carries was a bright spot for the Panthers. Chapman needs to find a way to rely less on deep passing and do more with a varied running game. Both quarterbacks in this game have potential to contribute to the ground game, but only totaled 4 carries for -4 yards which included a sack.

I believe in the talent on offense for the Panthers, but they need to execute with more consistency and stay on schedule moving forward.

La Verne Leopards 7 | Pomona-Pitzer Sagehens 34

The Sagehens needed to remind some outside observers that they are in fact the defending SCIAC Champion. This matchup with La Verne was the perfect opportunity.

It was not an ideal start for the Sagehens as on their first play from scrimmage, RB Kenric Jameison would fumble at the line and Osc Montenegro of La Verne would pick it up and return it for a 45-yard touchdown.

But that was extent of success for the Leopards on this day.

Pomona-Pitzer scored in every quarter, tallying 7/10/10/7 on their way to 34 points, led by QB Ethan Gretzinger.

Gretzinger is primarily a pocket passer and has shown growth across his 3 starts, culminating this week completing 26/36 for 245 yards and 3 TDs while being sacked twice.

In comparison to the Sagehens 410 total yards of offense, the Leopards were suffocated to a total of only 139, including a net of only 5 yards on the ground. Pomona-Pitzer made a statement regarding the defense of their title.

Week 5 Schedule

Redlands Bulldogs at La Verne Leopards | 1PM PDT

This is an opportunity for Redlands to prove that they are in the top tier of SCIAC football this season as they match up with a relatively weak Leopards squad.

QB Tyler Tremain had struggled against strong defense programs from the NWC in their first two games, but broke out against Chapman with 270 yards and 4 touchdowns. He will need to depend less on the deep ball, but he is growing as a quarterback.

As for the Leopards, while their defense is not terrible, it has been good enough to get the program a win. However, it appears that they lack offensive talent. So far, the Leopards’ run game has struggled and the passing game has been reliant on getting Jimmy Rumsey deep. And if that is not there, they probably won't score much at all.

Pomona-Pitzer Sagehens at CMS Stags | 1PM PDT

The Sixth Street Showdown! Now, these teams could potentially meet a second time in the final week of the regular season but this is one of the great proximity rivalries in college football. The 5 schools which make up the 2 programs share a single sprawling campus. Although they have their own field facilities, they're only a few hundred yards away from each other on opposite sides of E 6th St in the city of Claremont.

CMS lost to the Sagehens in the final week of the regular season last year in what had turned out to be a de facto SCIAC Championship Game. Clearly, having a meaningful high-stakes game to end the regular season is attractive to a conference. Yet, the new scheduling model forces the annual edition of this game to an earlier spot in the schedule. This keeps the possibility of a second season-ending matchup alive should the two programs finish in the same spot in their respective pods.

The winner of this game will likely control their own destiny to the SCIAC Championship.

Chapman Panthers at Cal Lutheran Kingsmen | 7PM PDT

This is a prime matchup of two programs hoping to keep the season from slipping away into mediocrity. They will also both feature quarterbacks who were pulled from their games last week and they'll be hungry to make a statement.

Chapman needs to shore up their pass defense against JP Andrade while Nathaniel Espinoza needs to complete more of his passes. Chapman has the talent at their skill positions but they've struggled to put it together thus far.

The level of football in the conference feels closer than it was last season, and hopefully that will draw more attendance to William Roland Stadium.

Week 5 SCIAC Power Ranking

  1. CMS Stags
  2. Redland Bulldogs
  3. Pomona-Pitzer Sagehens
  4. Chapman Panthers
  5. Cal Lutheran Kingsmen
  6. La Verne Leopards