Wesley improves to 3-0 with 43-7 NJAC rout of William Paterson

William Paterson running back Kobe Roberts is sandwiched at the line of scrimmage between Wesley defenders Coray Williams and Nick Glover in the first quarter of Saturday afternoon’s 43-7 Wolverines victory. Special to the Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

DOVER — One moment, Mike Brewer was just a blocker on Wesley College’s punt return team.

The next moment, the former Woodbridge High standout was sprinting 69 yards down the sidelines for his first collegiate touchdown.

Mike Brewer

Brewer ended up with the football when he intercepted a pass off a fake punt by William Paterson on Saturday afternoon.

“I was just in the right place at the right time,” said the freshman defensive back. “The ball was just overthrown and I was right there. We were planning on it (the Pioneers trying a fake) the whole time.

“That’s my first college touchdown. It was a very exciting moment. I knew I had my whole team blocking for me and I knew they weren’t going to let anybody get to me.”

Marcellus Pack of Wesley stiff-arms Paterson’s James Perrin for a few extra yards on the opening kickoff Saturday.

Brewer’s improbable TD put the exclamation point on a 23-point second quarter that put No. 7 Wesley in control of its 43-7 New Jersey Athletic Conference win over William Paterson at Miller Stadium on Saturday.

The Wolverines (2-0 NJAC, 3-0) had a sputtering start offensively against a team it downed 66-0 a year ago. Wesley didn’t take the lead until quarterback Khaaliq Burroughs scored on a two-yard run with 1:35 left in the first quarter.

But a 30-0 halftime cushion looked a lot better to the Wolverines, who handed the Pioneers (0-2 NJAC, 0-3 overall) their 19th straight loss.

Wesley’s defense, on the other hand, dominated from start to finish.

The Wolverines outgained William Paterson 447 yards-43 and held a 23-3 margin in first downs.

The only thing that stopped Wesley from posting a second shutout in a row was the Pioneers’ 91-yard kickoff return for a TD with just 3:40 remaining.

Wesley quarterback Khaaliq Burroughs keeps the ball and looks for running room against William Paterson.

The Wolverines had gone nine straight quarters with allowing a point.

“We were all focused,” said senior defensive end Vince Ebron. “The big goal was to really pitch a shutout today. We’re just going to make sure that (kick return) doesn’t happen again next game.”

“On defense, they dominated the whole game, like they were supposed to do,” said coach Chip Knapp. “We had a team that we felt like we had the physical advantage over. We had to focus and do our job.

“We knew they were going to make us work on offense — they weren’t going to give up the deep plays. We had to work down the field. It took us a little while to get going. But, once we did, I was happy with the effort.”

Burroughs completed 14-of-20 passes for 203 yards, three touchdowns with no interceptions. Three different receivers caught scoring passes led by Alex Kemp (Caesar Rodney), who had six receptions for 101 yards.

Eleven different players carried the ball, paced by E.J. Lee (20 carries-79 yards) and Abe Mansaray (3-73 yards).

But returns, like Brewer’s, actually were a big part of the Wolverines’ success on Saturday. Wesley totaled 280 return yards, including 129 yards on four punt returns from Corterris Simpson.

Wolverines head football coach Chip Knapp watches from the sideline as his team marches downfield for a touchdown in the first quarter.

Simpson, who also caught a 31-yard TD pass, helped keep the Wolverines in good field position much of the afternoon.

“Corterris Simpson, he’s a playmaker,” said Knapp. “He made some plays last year but now he’s really becoming a major threat in our return game. The whole (punt return) unit, they were executing, making plays and doing what we practice. It was good to see it come out on the field today.”

Simpson looked like he might return one of the punts for a touchdown, only to be tripped up by William Paterson punter William Oertel at the end.

“I knew I was going to break one,” said Simpson. “But I got stopped by the punter. They told me, ‘That was the punter.’ It was the disappointing but then the touchdown (catch) made up for it.”

Extra points

The one major setback for Wesley was that freshman running back Xavier Drummond (Sussex Tech) went down with a knee injury with only 2:51 remaining in the contest. He was literally carried off the field by teammate Josh Hughes, an offensive tackle. … Kicker Nick Bruhn hit 3-of-5 field-goal attempts … Defensive bck Coray Williams had a team-high six tackles. … The Pioneers’ Oertel got off a 73-yard punt, with about half of that total coming on the bounce. … The Wolverines play their first road game of the seaso with a 1 p.m. contest at Southern Virgina.

Reach sports editor Andy Walter at walter@newszap.com

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