Fourth-and-goal plays loomed large for the Central College football team Saturday but this time it was the defense that delivered as the No. 16 Dutch escaped with a 41-27 victory at the University of Dubuque in the Iowa Conference opener Saturday. Running back David Zachary rushed for a career-high 161 yards and four touchdowns on 18 carries as the Dutch offense delivered when it needed to in overcoming a Dubuque attack that unleashed a 504-yard offensive barrage. That’s the most yardage given up by Central since allowing a school record 539 yards in a victory at Augsburg College back in 2005. Central finished with 419 yards offense, including 275 on the ground. Quarterback Nate Snead gained more than 90 yards for the third straight game, rushing for 99 on 16 carries. He also completed eight of 14 passes for 79 yards and a score. Zack Bandow came off the bench late in the first half and completed 5-of-5 for 65 yards and a touchdown in a key six-play, 1:12 drive. But the game’s pivotal plays came on a pair of Dubuque fourth-quarter drives. Early in the period, the Spartans had a first down at the Central 5-yard line and came away empty. Later in the quarter again they were inside the 5 yard line and Central’s defense held them scoreless. Central improved to 3-0 , 1-0 in Iowa Conference play. Coe College visits for Central’s Homecoming game next Saturday at 1 p.m. at Ron and Joyce Schipper Stadium.