MOUNT PLEASANT – The University of St. Francis (Ind.) scored 28 second quarter points and Iowa Wesleyan College was held to 128 yards of offense in a 70-7 loss to the Cougars Saturday afternoon at Mapleleaf Stadium.
The Tigers posted just six first downs in the game in losing to a USF team ranked 17th in the NAIA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll. St. Francis won its season opener while IWC dropped to 0-3 and lost to a ranked team for the second straight week.
Wesleyan was unable to capitalize on the momentum from a solid touchdown drive late in the first quarter and struggled offensively the rest of the game. The Tiger defense also did not have a successful day, allowing 379 yards rushing and a total of 641 yards to the Cougars, a perennial NAIA power.
St. Francis scored twice in the first 6:13 of the game, with Frank Wolfe scoring on a 21-yard touchdown run and Shaine Tierney then running in from six yards out for a score. IWC came back though with its best drive of the day, going 74 yards in nine plays for its lone touchdown. Kevin McConnell (So.-Kansas City, Mo.) hit Marc Ballatori (Fr.-Tequesta, Fla.) for 48 yards on a third down to keep the drive going, and McConnell later hit Ballatori for a nine-yard touchdown pass.
The Tigers then stopped USF on downs on its next possession, but three plays netted just one yard and another Wesleyan punt. St. Francis then took over its next possession in IWC territory and needed just three plays to go 47 yards for a touchdown and a 21-7 lead.
The Cougars would add three more scores in the second quarter as the Tigers punted on five straight possessions. The final score of the half came with 36 seconds left before halftime, when Austin Coleman caught a nine-yard touchdown from Justin Boser for a 42-7 lead.
The second half would be more of the same, as USF scored two more touchdowns in both the third and fourth quarters. IWC managed to get a stop when Chris Owens (Sr.-Greer, S.C.) intercepted a pass in the third quarter, but the Tiger offense never got past midfield in the second half and netted just 18 yards in the final 30 minutes.
McConnell passed for 118 yards, completing 15 of 28 passes. Greg Fields (Sr.-St. Louis, Mo.) had six catches for 43 yards and Ballatori added four catches for 69 yards. The Tigers were held to a net total of -4 yards rushing, with Jarrod Mikel (Fr.-Houston, Texas) leading the team with 16 yards on seven carries.
Cameron Jones (Jr.-O’Fallon, Mo.) paced the defense with seven tackles. Owens added six tackles, and Trevon Calhoun (So.-Coral Springs, Fla.) also added a fumble recovery.
IWC gets another tough opponent next week when it travels to McKendree (Ill.) University, ranked eighth in the latest NAIA poll. Game time is 6 p.m.
Box score #17 USF (Ind.) 70 IWC 7