2014 NCAA Division 3 Semifinals Wrap Up
The 2014 Stagg Bowl is set after the two semifinal games on Saturday. Both games are recapped below in the 2014 NCAA Division 3 Semifinals Wrap Up. Feel free to check out how the two games came out to the predictions made here.
Wesley Wolverines (12-1) at Mount Union Purple Raiders (13-0)
For Mount Union, it was a complete destruction of Wesley. Some felt that Wesley had more than a fighting chance to pull the upset (including this author), but the Purple Raiders proved otherwise. They crushed Wesley 70-21.
Mount Union started the scoring on their second drive with Kevin Burke hitting Luc Meacham for a 19 yard touchdown. The following drive for Mount Union was easily taken down the field for Burke’s second touchdown pass. He connected with Sherman Wilkinson for a 10 yard touchdown and a 14-0 lead. The Purple Raiders recovered the following kickoff after a Wesley fumble, but Burke threw an interception on the first play of that drive.
Late in the first quarter, the Purple Raiders got 2 more touchdowns from the offense. First, Burke hit Tim Kennedy for a 53 yard touchdown and a 21-0 lead. The second touchdown came after a blocked punt by the special teams unit. Two plays later, Burke and Wilkinson connected again for a 20 yard touchdown. The first quarter ended with Mount Union up 28-0 and knocking on the door for another score after picking off a Joe Callahan pass.
The first play of the second quarter was B.J. Mitchell pounding the ball in for a one yard touchdown run. Wesley could not get on the board after Callahan lost a fumble at the Mount Union 38 yard line. The Wolverines prevented a touchdown on defense after stopping Mitchell on fourth and 1 from the Wesley 8 yard line. Just past the midway point in the second quarter Mount Union got back on the board with Burke scrambling for a 9 yard touchdown run and a 42-0 lead for Mount Union.
The defense got in on the act on Wesley’s next drive. The Wolverines were driving deep into Mount Union territory until Tre Jones stepped in front of Joe Callahan’s pass and returned it 85 yards for a touchdown. It became 56-0 when Burke hit Taurice Scott for a 22 yard touchdown pass. The Purple Raiders led 56-0 at the break with Burke going 19 of 31 for 315 yards with 5 passing touchdowns and a rushing touchdown.
The second half was just a matter of getting the game completed. Mount Union went up 63-0 with Burke hitting Scott for the second time. Scott made a nice move to cut it up field and dove into the end zone for a 16 yard touchdown reception. The Purple Raiders stopped Wesley at the Mount Union 13 yard line before another touchdown. Burke threw a 13 yard touchdown pass to Meacham, who made a diving catch in the back of the end zone. The third quarter ended with Mount Union leading 70-7 and Wesley facing a third and goal from the one.
Joe Callahan got in from a yard out to start the third quarter. That made it 70-7, but it was of almost no consolation. The second drive of the quarter resulted in a sixth turnover for Wesley. Callahan was picked by Zach Deerr on a tip, but Mount Union could not add to their tally after Edward Ruhnke missed a 38 yard field goal. Callahan hit Steve Koudossou for a 10 yard touchdown before the Wolverines capped the scoring with Brandon Wright’s one yard touchdown run to make it 70-21.
Joe Callahan went 39 of 69 for 440 yards with one touchdown passing and another touchdown on the ground. He also threw four interceptions. Jamar Baynard was the top rusher for Wesley with 13 carries for 52 yards. Steve Koudossou had a big game catching 17 passes for 256 yards with a touchdown. Andrew Monaghan was the second leading receiver with 10 catches for 67 yards.
Kevin Burke went 26 of 41 for 415 yards with 7 touchdown passes and one interception. Burke also ran for 52 yards and a touchdown on 8 carries. BJ Mitchell had 12 carries for 93 yards and a touchdown. Taurice Scott led Mount Union with 10 catches for 160 yards and 2 touchdowns. Luc Meacham had 5 catches for 76 yards and 2 touchdowns while Sherman Wilkinson caught 6 passes for 53 yards and a touchdown.
Linfield Wildcats (11-1) at Wisconsin-Whitewater Warhawks (13-0)
In an excellent football game between Linfield and Wisconsin-Whitewater, but it was Whitewater who came out on top 20-14.
In a defensive battle, it would be Whitewater that got on the board first. That came due to a Sam Riddle interception in which he threw the out of the back of his own end zone and was picked off by Ryan Winske. The ball was returned to the Linfield 32 yard line. Three plays later, Matt Behrendt hit Jake Kumerow for an easy 6 yard touchdown pass and a 7-0 lead. The first quarter ended 7-0 in favor of the Warhawks.
Whitewater’s first drive of the second quarter was also a touchdown. Behrendt hit running back Dennis Moore on a screen for a 46 yard touchdown to make it 14-0. Linfield had a chance to get points on the board, but they missed a 47 yard field goal to the left and still trailed 14-0. Whitewater would take their next drive to the Linfield 34 yard line, but opted to punt on fourth down. The punt return was fumble and the Warhawks recovered. Three plays later, Behrendt was picked off in the end zone by Kyle Belcher, as the score was 14-0 at halftime.
Whitewater’s second drive ended quickly when Jordan Ratliffe fumbled the ball and it was recovered by Linfield’s Alex Hoff. The Wildcats finally got on the board with Riddle hitting Levi Altringer for a 14 yard touchdown. The next Linfield drive ended with the same result. Sam Riddle ran for 61 yards on the drive including the electrifying 17 yard touchdown to tie the game at 14.
Early in fourth quarter, Riddle was picked off at his own 41, but the Wildcats held firm on defense and forced a Whitewater punt. Two drives later, Whitewater embarked on what would be the game-winning touchdown drive. Moore made a nice move at the line, broke an arm tackle, and outran the defense to the end zone for a 33 yard touchdown. The extra point was blocked to make it 20-14.
The final drive for Linfield started well. Riddle ran for 11 yards before hitting Altringer on a play action pass for 30 yards to the Whitewater 27 yard line. Faced with a fourth down and three, Riddle was hit by John Flood IV and lost the ball. The Warhawks were able to run the clock out after picking up a first down.
Sam Riddle went 17 of 37 for 190 yards with a touchdown and 2 picks. He also was the top rusher for Linfield with 17 carries for 83 yards and a touchdown. Spencer Payne ran for 69 yards on 17 carries. Charlie Poppen led the team with 6 catches for 70 yards. Levi Altringer had 3 catches for 51 yards and a touchdown.
Matt Behrendt went 14 of 28 for 184 yards with 2 touchdowns. Dennis Moore had 19 carries for 112 yards and a score while Jordan Ratliffe had 100 yards on 15 carries. Moore was also the top receiver with 3 catches for 59 yards and a touchdown while Jake Kumerow had 5 catches for 58 yards and a touchdown.
2014 Stagg Bowl – December 19 at 7 PM ET on ESPNU
For the 9th time in the last 10 years, it will be Wisconsin-Whitewater and Mount Union facing off in the Stagg Bowl. Wisconsin-Whitewater has won 5 of the games with Mount Union taking the other 3. Whitewater has won the last four Stagg Bowl matchups between these two teams.
The 2014 Stagg Bowl will be on Friday, December 19 at 7 PM Eastern Time on ESPNU.