Wesley routs William Patterson 63-0 in season finale

WAYNE, N.J. — Wesley College’s football team didn’t want to leave anything to doubt on Saturday.

It didn’t.

Making their final case for an NCAA Division III at-large playoff berth, Wesley routed New Jersey Athletic Conference foe William Patterson, 63-0, in its regular-season finale.

The Wolverines (8-1 NJAC, 9-1 overall) still had a shot at winning the NJAC title if Salisbury lost on Saturday. But the Sea Gulls rallied from a 20-point, fourth-quarter deficit to edge Frostburg State, 28-27, to claim the league’s automatic playoff bid.

Wesley, rankled No. 11 nationally, will have to wait until the NCAA playoff field is announced today starting today at 6 p.m. to if it has earned the program’s 11th straight tournament appearance.

In Saturday’s victory, the Wolverines rolled up 576 yards in scoring a season-high 63 points. Quarterback Joe Callahan threw for a season-high seven touchdowns, going 19-for-25 for 363 yards all in the first half. Backup Dan Kesack took over in the second half and rushed for two touchdowns.

Nick Falkenberg also saw action under center, going 5-for-5 for 34 yards.

Kesack led all Wesley rushers with 43 yards on five carries. Nine different Wolverines had a carry on the day, including Akiva Wedge, who rushed for 30 yards on four carries. Ten different Wesley wide receivers caught at least one pass with Bryce Shade leading the way. The slot receiver caught seven passes for 172 yards and three touchdowns.

James Okike added four catches for 90 yards and three scores while Kyle George caught three passes for 38 yards and a touchdown. Senior Chris Askew recorded his first catch of the season in the second half.

On defense, linebacker Samer Manna led Wesley with eight tackles while James Williamson added seven including a team-best three tackles for loss. Ray Mangold came away with the team’s only sack of the day.

The shutout was the Wolverines’ first since a 59-0 win over MIT in last year’s playoffs.

The Wolverines moved the ball with ease throughout the first half. After the defense forced a turnover on the opening drive, the Wolverines went 39 yards on seven plays for a score, capped by a five-yard connection from Callahan to Shade.

After another Wesley stop, a 58-yard bomb from Callahan to Okike put the Wolverines ahead 14-0. Three plays into the second quarter, Callahan found Okike again, this time for 19 yards to put the Wolverines up 21-0.

The Wesley defense continued providing quick stops, and allowed Callahan and the Wolverines to score again and again. Wesley put up 28 points in the second quarter to take a 49-0 lead into halftime.

Wesley was held scoreless through the third quarter, but the Wolverines cranked up their rushing attack to drive 71 yards in seven plays and score again with 12:12 left in the fourth quarter to go ahead 56-0.

In the final two minutes, Wesley scored again, gaining all of its yards on the ground to go ahead 63-0.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.