NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - The Wesley College Football team commited four turnovers, throwing two interceptions and coughing up a pair of fumbles that cost them in a 42-28 loss to New Jersey Athletic Conference rival Christopher Newport University on Saturday night at POMOCO Stadium.
Dan Kesack threw for 305 yards on 18-for-29 passing, throwing a pair of touchdowns, but also tossing a pair of interceptions. Jamar Baynard rushed for 115 yards and two scores while Bryce Shade caught five passes for 71 yards and two touchdowns. Alex Kemp led the Wolverines in receiving yards with 91 on just three catches.
Ben Robinson led the Wesley defense with 10 tackles. The senior forced a fumble and recorded three pass breakups as well. Beau James recorded his first career sack while Nmandi Njoku and Vincent Ebron split a sack as well.
The Wolverines and Captains volleyed back and forth with each team scoring touchdowns on their two opening drives on offense. Jamar Baynard capped Wesley's first touchdown drive with a punch-in from the one-yard line to tie the game at 7-7. After a Captains score, Kesack led another touchdown drive for 71 yards, finishing it with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Shade, making it 14-14 in the first quarter.
The home team scored another touchdown with 13:33 left in the second quarter to take a 21-14 lead and kept the Wolverines off the board for the remainder of the first half to take their seven-point advantage into the halftime break.
In the second half, both teams opened by stopping the other offense and forcing three-and-out series. The Wolverines were the first to crack the scoreboard in the third quarter, tying the game at 21-21 with a six play, 74-yard drive. Baynard broke open a 41-yard run off the right tackle to score, tying the game. The Wolverine defense was stout the rest of the quarter keeping CNU off the board and the two teams entered the final frame tied.
The fourth quarter was a nightmare for the Wolverines. After driving 84 yards on 10 plays and getting down to the CNU red zone, Wesley looked poised to take the lead with a score. The Wolverines coughed up a fumble though and the Captains pounced on it to stop the drive and shift momentum.
The Captains then put together a 91-yard scoring drive that put the home team ahead 28-21 with 7:46 remaining. CNU's primary kicker was injured on the extra point, which affected the kickoff. The substitute booted a line drive into the front line of Wolverines on the kickoff. The ball ricocheted off a Wesley body and directly into the arms of the kicking team, effectively serving as an onside kick, giving the Captains the ball again. With momentum swung firmly towards the Captains, the home team drove 56 yards on four plays for another score that put them ahead 35-21 with 6:03 left in the game.
Trailing by two scores with little time left, the Wolverine offense was forced to press for a quick score. The squad took to the air, but Dan Kesack was stripped on a dropback by a Captains' defender. CNU fell on the loose ball, crushing any hopes of a Wesley comeback. Both teams scored touchdowns in the final 1:30 but by then it was too late for the Wolverines. The Navy and White fell to CNU 42-28.
Wesley moves to 1-2 on the season and will take their bye week next weekend. The Wolverines return to play on Oct. 1 when they travel to Buena Vista, Va. to take on the Knights of Southern Virginia University.