GLASSBORO, N.J. – It was a tale of two halves on Saturday afternoon in Glassboro, as the Wolverines built up a big lead and withstood a second half run to earn a crucial 24-17 victory over New Jersey Athletic Conference rival No. 21 Rowan University.
Dan Kesack went 15-for-32 for 268 yards and a touchdown threw the air. The quarterback also ran for a score. Jamar Baynard rushed for 98 yards and a touchdown while Alex Kemp hauled in four passes for 118 yards including a 62-yard touchdown reception.
On defense, Ben Robinson made 12 tackles, including nine solo, recording 3.5 tackles for loss and an interception. Isaiah Ingram added to his team leading sack total with two more, knocking the ball loose on both sacks to force a pair of turnovers as well. Rodney Snider added a pick for the Wolverines as they forced a season-high five turnovers.
The Wolverines used big plays on defense in the first half to set up the offense for scores. The squad turned a pair of strip sacks and fumble recoveries into first half touchdowns to take an early lead. Midway through the first quarter, Isaiah Ingram got to the quarterback and forced fumble. Nmandi Njoku scooped the ball and returned it to the red zone. Two plays later, Jamar Baynard punched in a rushing touchdown, putting Wesley ahead 7-0.
After a Rowan field goal, the Wolverines came away with another forced turnover. This time it was Samer Manna who got into the backfield to disrupt the play and fall on the loose ball to give Wesley prime field position. Dan Kesack connected with Alex Kemp on a 48-yard pass and then ran a seven-yard draw, hurdling a defender on his way to a rushing score to put Wesley ahead 14-3.
The Wolverines forced a Rowan three-and-out on the next drive and quickly found the end zone once again. Kesack connected with Kemp for another long pass play, this time for 62 yards and a score. A Speidel extra point made it 21-3 with six minutes remaining in the half. Speidel added a 21 yard field goal with six seconds left in the half to give the Wolverines a 24-3 lead at the break.
The tables turned in the second half as the Rowan defense held the Wolverines scoreless throughout. The Profs mounted a pair of scoring drives, wearing down the Wesley defense for 14 consecutive second half points to draw within a touchdown.
With time winding down in the fourth quarter, the Wolverine defense came away with one more big play, stripping the Rowan quarterback yet again and taking over in Rowan territory. Just as it looked that Wesley would make it a two-possession game with under four minute to go, the Profs blocked a Wesley field goal and returned it to near midfield.
The Wolverine defense came up with one more big stop though, preventing the home team from driving down field to tie the game. Wesley earned a turnover on downs and kneeled out the remaining clock to preserve the lead and the victory.
Wesley earned the victory over Rowan, taking down the Profs in a battle of top teams in the conference. The Wolverines control their own destiny now in the conference standings with Frostburg State beating Christopher Newport University on Saturday as well. The Navy and White will host Montclair State on Saturday, October 29.