Wolverines Win Home Opener
DOVER, DE. - A 24-point 2nd quarter fueled Wesley College (3-0, 1-0) to 45-9 home opener win against conference rival Buffalo State College (0-2, 0-1).
Leading 10-0 early in the second quarter from an 18-yard touchdown catch by sophomore Jon Lanouette and a 40-yard field goal by kicker Chris Carlton, Wesley catapulted to a 24-0 lead on two big plays.
Buffalo State quarterback Mike Mikolaichik completed a pass to key wide out Jonathan Allen in the flat, but a hard charging Mario Harris dislodged to the ball which was then picked out of the air by Wesley's Josh Jones who sprinted 38 yards for the touchdown. Carlton's kick made it 17-0.
The Wolverines forced the Bengals to punt on their next possession. Wesley's Jeff Morgan made his way through the Bengal's line to get a hand on the punt, which was picked up by Wesley's Ron Thompson who earned a tough 20 yards to the Bengal's goal line for the score. Carlton's extra point put the total at 24-0.
Buffalo State ended the shut out with 00:25 remaining in the half on a 25 yard Eric Buchanan field goal.
Buffalo State came out strong in the second half, forcing and early turnover. Safety Michael Haynes stepped in front of the Chris Warrick pass to give Buffalo the Bengals the ball at their own 21. Two big plays later, Bengal's running back, James Perkins broke scored.
Mikolaichik was intercepted on their next drive by Wesley's Trae Swan who returned the ball to the Bengal's 5 yard line. One play later, Alpha Korma slammed home another score for the Wolverines upping the lead once again to 22 at 31-9.
Koroma would score again late in the third quarter, this time on a 4-yard charge. Carlton continued his perfect day and Wesley pulled away once again.
Wide out Curtis Gore ended the scoring as he slipped through the Bengal's secondary for a 55-yard scoring strike from Warrick. Final score Wesley 45, Buffalo State 9.
Buffalo State wide out Jonathan Allen was the leading receiver in the game with 151 yards on 6 catches, but was unable to get into the end zone. Wesley's Marcus Lee led the Wolverines with 72 yards on 5 catches.
Defensively, Wesley's linebacker Bryan Sorenson led in tackles with 10 (5-5). Junior safety Mario Harris had a stellar day in the secondary with 7 tackles (5-2) two pass break ups and a couple of spectacular hits. His forced fumble in the second quarter turned the tide early in the game.
Wesley is at home again next week against visiting Kean University. Buffalo State travels to Cortland State.
Wolverines Pass Past Averett
DANVILLE, Va. - The Wesley College Wolverines won on the road again defeating Averett University 49-9 on Saturday. The Wolverines amassed 476 yards of total offense in the win and the stingy defense held Averett to negative 41 yards rushing on the day.
Wesley struck first with 5:23 remaining in the first quarter on a 4-yard run by Kevin Nelson. That play capped off a 13-play drive of 80 yards that lasted for 5:29. The point after gave the Wolverines a 7-0 advantage.
Averett fell into a 14-0 hole early in the second quarter on a 65-yard touchdown pass from Chris Warrick to Larry Beavers. That lead was advanced to 21-0 three minutes later with 10:19 showing on the second quarter clock on a Tykee Perry run of five yards. That drive was six plays worth 66 yards that lasted 1:57.
After several stalled drives for both teams the Cougars struck with only seconds remaining in the half. Jeff Hughley fielded a punt at his own 27-yardline, which he returned 44 yards to Wesley's 29 yardline. After a 23-yard Todd Parsons to Eric Sicre completion, Parsons later found Shannon Short for a 6-yard scoring completion. However, the point after was missed and Averett trailed 21-6 at the intermission.
Averett netted a field goal in the third quarter, as Chris Ashcraft connected from 27-yards.
Wesley answered that score with a pair of touchdowns in the third quarter, a 60-yard pass from Warrick to Marcus Lee and a Warrick to Beavers pass of 10 yards for a 35-9 advantage after the third quarter.
Wesley tacked on a 43-yard Warrick to Beavers scoring connection and a 6-yard touchdown run by Jamaal Johnson for the 49-9 final margin.
Wesley was held to only 85 yards rushing, but totaled 391 passing yards for 476 yards of total offense. Chris Warrick completed 19-of-34 passes for 366 yards and four touchdowns. Larry Beavers was on the receiving end of three of those passes for 118 yards. All went for touchdowns.
Wesley College plays conference foe Buffalo State University on Saturday in their home opener.
Wesley Wins Season Opener
GREENCASTLE. IND. -- Visiting Wesley College built a 24-point lead early in the third quarter and hung on to win on the road, 31-26. Junior captain Mario Harris thwarted a hail-mary into the right endzone as time expired when he picked off Tiger quarterback Ross Wiethoff's pass.
Wesley reached the board first on Chris Carlton's 44-yard field goal with 10:42 left in the first on a drive that started after the Wolverines recovered a DePauw fumble on the third play of the game. Carlton broke Chris Lyons' previous record of 43 yards set against Greensboro College in 2000. The Tigers took their only lead of the game at 7-3 on Wiethoff's 1-yard run with 5:21 remaining in the first quarter which capped a 10-play, 74-yard drive.
Larry Beavers put the Wolverines ahead for good with a 49-yard pass reception from Chris Warrick with 3:09 left in the first quarter and Wesley extended the margin to 17-7 on Jon Lanouette's 14-yard catch from Warrick with 13:09 remaining in the half. Kevin Nelson's 2-yard run with 6:27 left in the half made it 24-7.
Wesley drove 74 yards in six plays in its opening series of the second half capped by Beavers' 27-yard reception from Warrick with 13:12 left in the third.
DePauw came back with a 10-play, 78-yard drive with Jeremiah Marks scoring on a 4-yard run with 8:35 remaining in the quarter. Jon Drummond blocked Tyler Mallory's extra point attempt keeping the score at 31-13.
The Tigers scored on their next possession with Wiethoff teaming with Brian Culp for a 29-yard score with 2:14 left in the third to make it 31-20.
A Wesley College snap sailed over punter Jake Reuter's head and the Tigers took over on the Wesley 1-yard line. Marks scored to cut the gap to 31-26 with 6:47 left in the contest.
The Wolverines picked up three first downs including the final two on third down plays, but were forced to punt from the DePauw 38. The Tigers took over on their own 17 with 1:18 remaining. DePauw drove to the Wesley 45 with six seconds left before Mario Harris picked off Wiethoff's heave to the end zone.
DePauw outgained Wesley 374-322, but committed four turnovers to the Wolverines one. Warrick completed 15 of 32 passes for 226 yards and three touchdowns with Tim Bayles hauling in five and Beavers adding four catches for 106 yards and two scores. Kevin Nelson led Wesley with 74 yards in 22 carries and Alpha Koroma picked up 55 on just seven tries.
Harris paced Wesley with 13 tackles and William Buck followed with 12, while Bryan Robinson totaled three quarterback hurries. Robinson and Buck shared the game's only sack.
Wesley travels to Averett next Saturday.
Wesley 2005 Season Outlook
The Wesley College Wolverines tradition of winning goes back to 1989. That is the last season Wesley had a losing season on the grid-iron. Head Coach Mike Drass has compiled an overall record of 85-36-1 as he enters his 13th year at the helm. Wesley has a winning percentage of .703 (107-45-1) since 1990. The Wolverines finished last season with an 8-2 record and ranked 31st in The Don Hansen Football Gazette final poll. Wesley will open the season on the road taking on DePauw University (8-2) and Averett University (6-4) before their home opener against Buffalo State on September 17th.
Senior All-American Candidate Kevin Nelson (5-3/170) set one NFL scout's record book this spring as he was reportedly "the shortest player we have ever measured." But Nelson stature does not come into question on the playing field as he rushed for 1,579 yards on 243 carries. Nelson's 6.5 yards per carry was the best among the top 25 rushers in NCAA D-III last season. Nelson led the ACFC in Rushing (157.9) and All-Purpose yards (172.6) and ranked 6th and 10th in the NCAA in each category. Sophomore Alpha Koroma (6-0/202) rushed for 160 yards on 23 carries and a TD will look to back up Nelson. Senior Fullback Warren Sharper (5-8/237) returns for his fourth year as a starter, Juniors Chris Barnes (5-8/227) and Kyle Jones (5-11/255) will also help clear a path for Nelson.
Junior Quarterback Chris Warrick (6-2/211) has quietly put up some pretty impressive numbers in his first two years as a starter. Warrick has completed 264 of 517 for 3,511 yards and 30 TDs in 20 starts. Jason Schatz (6-3/215) a freshman and sophomore Alex Korattiyil (6-0/205) will back-up Warrick.
Atlantic Central Football Conference "Rookie of the Year" Jon Lanouette (6-4/250) returns for his sophomore year after catching 46 passes for 764 yards and 5 TDs in his All-ACFC first season. Senior Curtis Gore (5-8/172) caught 23 passes for 297 yards and sophomore Ian James 8 catches for 91 yards both had good years catching and blocking. Sophomore Larry Beavers (6-0/165) and Freshman Marcus Lee (6-0/175) ran 4.5 40's in the spring and will be counted on to help the offense through the air. Seniors Tim Bayles (6-2/225) and Mike Lemon (6-5/220) will see action at Tight End. Lemon, a former starter at Quarterback should help Bayles stabilize the Tight End position.
The Offensive Line will be led by junior Norman Bauer (6-2/300) who earned 2nd team All-ACFC honors last season. Sophomore Chris Sfamurri (6-1/307) was on his way to an outstanding season before an injury sidelined him the last 3 ½ games of the season. Junior Bubba Miller (6-0/337) picked up four starts at guard last year. Senior Aris Byrd (5-11/242) has moved to Center after two years as a starter on the d-line, Byrd will compete with Junior George Covert (5-11/260) and Senior Pete McMahon (5-9/275). Sophomore Bill Collick (6-3/278) and Freshman John Parker (6-3/300) will push for time after solid spring drills. Freshmen John Senkus (6-5/290) from Newark, DE and David Erdman (6-4/290) from River Hill, MD will join a host of new comers who will compete for playing time.
The Wolverine Defense will have to find a way to replace Gagliardi Trophy Winner (Division III Player of the Year) and 1st team All-American Rocky Myers. Myers a four-year starter finished his career with 436 tackles and 16 Interceptions. The Secondary will be led by three returning starters Junior Mario Harris (5-8/174) was an All-ACFC selection last season. Harris, who can play corner or safety, had 70 tackles and 13 pass break ups last fall. Seniors Brian Bush (5-10/185) and William Buck (5-7/181) return to the line up. Bush finished the 2004 season ranked 13 in NCAA D-III with 17 pass break ups and Buck finished the season with 40 tackles and 3 QB Sacks. Sophomores Trea Swann (5-11/180) and Ray Thompson (5-10/170) each saw quality time last season.
The Strength of the Defense would have to be the Wolverines Defensive Line. Senior Anthony Johnson (6-5/251) and Sophomore Bryan Robinson (6-3/293) both earned 1st team All-ACFC honors last season. Johnson, who ran a 4.75 40 for NFL Scouts this spring has 20 career QB Sacks. Robinson Tallied 12 Tackles for a loss and 6 QB Sacks last year. Senior Nick Cipot (6-3/235) and Junior Chris Knight (6-2/252) will be counted on up front for the D-Line. Cipot recorded 4 QB Sacks and 13 tackles last season, Knight added a sack and a tackle for a loss. Senior Tony Powell (6-2/335) and Sophomore Jamal Williams (6-1/311) return after solid seasons in '04. Powell has 95 career tackles and 7 QB Sacks.
Seniors Bryan Sorenson (5-11/225) an Honorable Mention All-ACFC selection in 2004 and Anthony Beard (5-10/237) return to action. Sorenson was third on the team with 55 tackles had 8 tackles for a loss and 2 Interceptions. Junior Nick McCulley (6-2/220) came on strong, starting the last three games of the season picking up 20 tackles. Sophomore Josh Jones (6-0/208) will start the season on the weak side. Jones had 17 tackles in limited action as a freshman. Junior Eston Ennis (5-10/210) and sophomore Chris Mumy (5-11/225) will compete for action.
Senior Chris Carlton (5-8/165) had a record setting year connecting on 11 field goals on 15 attempts (73%) and hit on 30-32 PATs (93%). He set Wesley Records with FG, FGA, FG% and PAT%, Carlton set and ACFC marks with PAT%. The sure footed senior was named 2nd team All-ACFC. Junior Christian Cattanea (5-8/170) averaged 53 yards on 61 kick-offs and 4 Touchbacks. Junior Punter Jake Reuter (5-8/175) led the ACFC as he dropped 14 punts inside the 20 yard line. Reuter averaged 35.6 yards a punt.
Wesley Names Team Captains for 2005 Season
Wesley College announces Mario Harris (Annapolis, MD/Annapolis), Anthony Johnson (Lothian, MD/Southern), Kevin Nelson (Wilmington, DE/Delcastle) and Bryan Sorenson (West River, MD/Southern) team captains for the 2005 season. These fine young men were elected by their peers to lead the Wolverines as they head in to the 2005 campaign.
Mario Harris is the only Junior captain for the 2005 season. Harris' tremendous athletic ability shut down opposing receivers all year in 2004. Harris was honored by the ACFC when he was named to the 1st team as a defensive back. At his corner position Harris was second on the team in tackles with 70. Harris also had five tackles for a loss of 43 yards, one interception and 12 pass break-ups.
Anthony Johnson was the anchor of the Wolverines defense last season, and was ranked nationally in sacks last year for most of the season. The other Southern high school graduate was rewarded for his play by being named first team Atlantic Central Football Conference at Defensive End. Johnson had nine sacks and was fourth on the team in tackle with 47, eight coming for a loss of 19 yards. Johnson was named to the ACFC Honor Roll twice last year for his outstanding play.
Senior running back Kevin Nelson was sixth in Division III in rushing with 1,579 yards last season was also named captain for the Wolverines. Nelson averaged 6.5 yards per carry which was tops out of any runningback nationally ranked in 2004. Nelson was named first team ACFC with 11 touchdowns on the ground. Nelson was ranked 10th in the country in All-Purpose yards with 172.6 per game.
Bryan Sorenson is a Senior Linebacker for the Wolverines. The Southern high school grad was third on the team in tackles last season with 55 including 4.5 for a loss of 20 yards. Sorenson will be a three year starter this season at strong side linebacker. Sorenson was also the captain of the Wolverines Baseball team this spring.
Wesley is coming off an 8-2 season and has a good nucleus coming back in 2005. Wesley opens up at DePauw University (IN) on September 3rd.