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Rollins football caps historic win

Corey Gonsalves races around a Clemson defender Nov. 5.

Corey Gonsalves races around a Clemson defender Nov. 5.

Isaac Babcock

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Just one game after returning to the football field for the first time in 62 years, the Rollins College Football Club scored its first victory.

The Tars (1-1) blasted the visiting Clemson Tigers 30-14 on Nov. 5 after a big comeback took them over the top.

“I wish we could have played them for the first game,” quarterback Jeff Hoblick said. “They were a good group of guys and that game was a lot of fun.”

The Tars had been down 14-12 after a failed two-point conversion set them back with just seconds to spare in the first half. That half was marred by some offensive miscues early, but the Tars found some legroom on some outside runs to pick up key yardage.

In the meantime, the Tars’ defense managed to sack the Tigers a handful of times, pressuring the defense and picking up big tackles for loss.

“They were playing a lot of sweep plays and playing pretty much pure club football, so we took advantage,” Hoblick said.

Some special teams miscues hurt the Tars early, with bad snaps reversing the yardage on punts and giving the Tigers the field position they needed to score on short drives.

Hoblick found his arm early on, connecting on passes of more than 30 yards to bring his team downfield. In the second half, he started from behind but quickly led his team into a comeback rally.

He would score the first touchdown of the second half on a scramble, then handed the ball off to Dylan Kelly for a 32-yard touchdown run.

The Tars’ defense turned into a brick wall and the offense caught fire in the second half to pull away with the win, despite some injuries that decimated the team’s numbers late in the game.

“By the end I think we had maybe 18 guys left,” Hoblick said.

With some of the club football season left, he said that they still had time to schedule a third and final game for the season, but that at this point he’s thinking about the 2012 season. Now it’s all about fundraising and showing Rollins staff and fans that they’re serious about football.

“We’re looking at the next season, trying to build a good program and have a good fan experience,” he said. “It’s gonna be fun.”