Big 4th Quarter Lifts #10 Football on Homecoming

Rick Jackson shakes Huntingdon's John-David Swiger on his 44-yard touchdown run.
Rick Jackson shakes Huntingdon's John-David Swiger on his 44-yard touchdown run.

DOVER, Del. – Wesley College's tenth-ranked football team scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to defeat No. 22 Huntingdon College, 38-28, on Saturday afternoon at Scott D. Miller Stadium. With the Homecoming victory, the Wolverines improve to 4-1 on the season, giving the Hawks (3-1) their first loss of the season.

Steve Koudossou, who went over 100 career catches during the game, caught a pair of touchdown passes from Joe Callahan in the final period, and finished the day with six catches for 70 yards.  Following Koudossou's first touchdown grab and a successful two-point conversion pass to Matt Bundy, which cut Huntingdon's lead to just a field goal with 14:50 left in the game, Zane Campbell picked off his second pass in the endzone.

Callahan then led the Wolverines on a nine-play, 80 yard drive that took just over a minute, giving Wesley a 32-28 lead it would not surrender.  Key during the drive were three completions to three different receivers, followed by a 17 yard run by Callahan on a third-and-12 to get the ball to the Wolverine 40-yard line.  Callahan then hit Jeremiah Howe for 21 yards before finding Koudossou for a 39-yard touchdown.

Huntingdon was able to advance the ball into Wesley territory on its very next drive, but after Sosthene Kapepula denied the Hawks on third-and-one at the 33-yard line, Brenton Barnes stuffed Austin Bennett to force a turnover on downs.

Rick Jackson received the call on all three plays for Wesley after the Wolverines got the ball back. Following a run for 16 and eight yards, Jackson then scampered for a 44-yard touchdown run with 6:32 left in the game to seal the victory.

The matchup of ranked South Region foes was a tale of two halves as Wesley led after the first quarter, 3-0, on a 25-yard field goal by Jon Storck. Huntingdon took its first lead of the game midway through the second period on a 65-yard touchdown by Taylor Belsterling but Bundy hauled in a 25-yard pass from Callahan with 1:59 left in the half, giving Wesley a 10-7 lead.

Huntingdon was driving as the first half was coming to a close but Kapepula's interception stopped the bleeding, allowing the Wolverines to go into halftime with a three-point advantage.

A pair of 1-yard touchdown runs by Taylor Hughes and Bennett midway through the third quarter helped the Hawks take the lead once again, 21-10, with 7:18 left in the period.  The 11 point deficit was definitely familiar to Wesley, as it also trailed by a similar margin at one point last year to the same Huntingdon team in Montgomery.

On the Wolverines ensuing drive, Callahan found a wide open Kyle George down the seam, and George broke a couple tackles en route to a 60-yard touchdown, cutting the deficit to just four points with 5:14 left.  Wesley then forced a punt, but after turning the ball over, Huntingdon's Zach Camp caught a six-yard pass for a score, putting the Hawks back on top, 28-17 with just over a minute left in the third.

Similar to the final score, Wesley held a narrow advantage in total offense (515 to 472 yards) and time of possession (30:04 to 29:56). The Wolverines also rushed for 181 yards compared to 111 for Huntingdon, who threw for 361 yards with Wesley going for 334.

Callahan went for over 300 yards passing for the second time in his career, completing 22-of-39 attempts for 334 yards and four touchdowns.  Bundy was his most frequent target with seven catches for 85 yards while Howe finished with six receptions for 97 yards.

Jackson had a career day on the ground, rushing for 127 yards on just 13 carries while Callahan finished with 45 rushing yards on four attempts.

Ryne Taylor and Hughes split snaps under center for Huntingdon as they have all season with Taylor throwing for 217 yards on 15-of-29 passing.  Hughes was more accurate (10-of-16) for 144 yards. Tyler Robinson and Belsterling combined for 12 catches which amounted to 290 yards.

Kapepula led the Wesley defense with 12 tackles, along with a sack, 3.5 tackles for loss, an interception and two passes defended. Besides his two interceptions, Campbell finished with nine tackles and a TFL while Dominique "Duke" Herald and Luke Maginnis were credited with eight tackles apiece.

The Wolverines are back home on Saturday, October 12, when they host Virginia-Lynchburg in a 1 pm start.  Fans are also encouraged to bring canned foods to the game as part of Wesley's Annual Food Drive to benefit the Food Bank of Delaware.