Halftime update: Columbia down 36-7 to Princeton
While Princeton rolled, Columbia couldn’t get anything going offensively in the first half and is down 36-7.
First-year quarterback Kelly Hilinski came on to relieve sophomore Trevor McDonagh for the Lions with 10:08 left in the second quarter, and proved to be more effective. Hilinski hit sophomore Scooter Hollis over the middle with a pass and the wideout took it the rest of the way for a 70-yard touchdown. It was Hilinski’s first completion and touchdown of his Columbia career. That touchdown pass more than tripled the Lions’ offensive output to that point in the game.
McDonagh completed four of his nine passes for 10 yards in just over a quarter of work.
Led for the most part by quarterback Quinn Epperly—Connor Michelsen came out with an injury midway through the first quarter—the Tigers used a frantic pace on offense to put up 36 points. On its first three scoring drives, the Tigers continually snapped the ball with more than 25 seconds left on the play clock—sometimes with over 30. One 10-play, 80-yard drive just 3:06.
Eppelry finished the half 17-21 with 246 yards and four touchdowns. He hit receiver Roman Wilson nine times for 144 yards and three touchdowns. Epperly also led the Tigers’ ground game with nine rushes for 37 yards
The offensive woes have certainly continued for the Lions. They have just two first downs, 13 rushing yards on 11 attempts, and 80 passing yards—70 of which came on Hollis’ touchdown reception. Princeton outgained the Light Blue 396 to 93, and ran 54 plays to Columbia’s 26.
It’s going to take a lot for Columbia to come back in the second half, but with Hilinski’s 70-yard touchdown pass, the offense did show a little life.
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