WEEK 1 HIGHLIGHT VIDEO (courtesy of GKess Films)
On Saturday, Oct. 1, the Wesleyan University football team will host its 2016 home-opener at Corwin Stadium on Andrus Field against Hamilton College. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m., as both teams look for their first win of the season.
The Cardinals, who finished 5-3 a year ago, dropped a difficult road game last Saturday against Tufts. Ahead 14-3 at the half, Wesleyan saw its lead slip away as the Jumbos scored two fourth quarter touchdowns to claim a 17-14 win. Hamilton also opened the season on the road and travelled to Amherst, where the Continentals were shut out, 34-0.
Wesleyan holds a 27-17-1 all-time record against the Continentals, and have won four straight against its NESCAC foe. Last season, the two teams met at Steuben Field in Clinton, N.Y. The Cardinals trailed 10-9 entering the fourth quarter but prevailed as Devon Carrillo '17 scored the game-winning touchdown with 3:19 to play. The visitor's held a commanding 401-to-164 advantage in total offense and rushed for 191 yards, while holding the Continentals to 16. Wesleyan also gained 25 first downs to Hamilton's eight, and held a 34:21-to-25:39 advantage in time of possession.
Today's game figures to see two different quarterbacks from last year's Oct. 3rd matchup, with Mark Piccirillo '19 projected to start for Wesleyan and Cole Freeman looking to lead the way for the Continentals. Last year, Gernald Hawkins '18 started behind center for the Cardinals and went 14-of-31 for 157 yards and rushed 11 times for 37 yards without committing a turnover, while Chase Rosenberg started for the Continentals and went 14-of-29 for 148 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He also rushed 11 times for 13 yards, but has switched positions in 2016 and is now listed as a wide receiver.
Carrillo scored Wesleyan's two touchdowns as he rushed for 63 yards on 11 carries. Jaylen Berry '18 led the team in touches with 18 as he finished with 53 yards on the ground. In all, seven different players were involved in the rushing game for Wesleyan. Rosenberg finished as Hamilton's top rusher in the game, while LaShawn Ware led the team in carries but wasn't able to produce anything as the stifling Cardinals defense stuffed him for -1 yards.
Wesleyan has posted four consecutive winning seasons, including back-to-back 7-1 campaigns in 2013 and 2014, and are 24-9 dating back to 2012. During that same stretch, the Continentals have failed to win more than two games in a season and are just 3-30 overall including back-to-back 0-8 campaigns in 2013 and 2014. Their last win against Wesleyan was in 2011 when they claimed a 7-6 victory.
BY THE NUMBERS
|Points Per Game||14.0||0.0|
|Points Per Game Allowed||17.0||34.0|
|Total Offensive Yards||310.0||168.0|
|Total Passing Yards||189.0||162.0|
|Total Rushing Yards||121.0||6.0|
|Total Yards Allowed||259.0||382.0|
|Total Passing Yards Allowed||137.0||212.0|
|Total Rushing Yards Allowed||122.0||170.0|
|Passing Leaders||Mark Piccirillo (189 yards, 0 TD)||Cole Freeman (154 yards, 0 TD)|
|N/A||Brandon Tobin (8 yards, 0 TD)|
|Rushing Leaders||Mark Piccirillo (84 yards, 1 TD)||Trevor Pinkham (16 yards, 0 TD)|
|Dario Highsmith (21 yards, 0 TD)||Marcus Gutierrez (7 yards, 0 TD)|
|Receiving Leaders||Mike Breuler (60 yards, 0 TD)||Charles Ensley (69 yards, 0 TD)|
|Sebastian Canizares-Fernandez (37 yards, 0 TD)||Jordan Jenkins (47 yards, 0 TD)|
|Defensive Leaders||Jordan Stone (8 tackles, 0.5 sacks)||Tyler Hudson (12 tackles, 2 sacks)|
|Shayne Kaminski/Brandon Morris (6 tackles)||Mickey Keating/Brent Lobien (8 tackles)|