EMORY, Va. – The Emory & Henry College Football Team (4-1, 2-0 ODAC) scored 31-straight points in rainy conditions Saturday at Fred Selfe Stadium in defeating Bridgewater College (3-2, 1-1 ODAC) by a 31-7 score in Old Dominion Athletic Conference play.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Eagles took their first possession of the second 15 minutes 77 yards in 11 plays for the opening touchdown of the game. Matt Pisarcik hit Keith Jennings from 12 yards out at the 8:03 mark of the second quarter to put Bridgewater up, 7-0.
Emory & Henry immediately tied the game at a touchdown apiece, going 75 yards down the field in six plays in only 84 seconds. Sophomore quarterback Kevin Saxton (Monroe, N.C.) completed back-to-back passes to redshirt freshman wide receiver Tyree Ward (Statesville, N.C.) including a 45-yard catch-and-run for the score.
After a missed field goal by the Eagles, the Wasps got the ball back and drove down the field to take a 14-7 lead at the half. Saxton found redshirt freshman wideout Kelman Simpson (Asheville, N.C.) for 54 yards to flip the field, and six plays later hit Ward from nine yards out for his second touchdown of the game.
The Wasps started their second possession of the second half at the Bridgewater 36 after a short punt by the Eagles. A 26-yard catch by Ward set up first-and-goal and Saxton capped the drive with an inside pass to sophomore running back Isaiah Rodgers (Canton, Ga.) from four yards out and a 21-7 lead.
Emory & Henry forced a three-and-out and blocked a punt, getting the ball back on the Bridgewater 41. On third down, Saxton connected with Ward for yet another pass but Ward fumbled on the six yardline. The ball bounced into the end zone and Ward fell on top of it for his third touchdown of the day.
E&H capped the scoring drive with a 35-yard field goal by freshman Skyler Simcox (Abingdon, Va.) at the 12:05 mark of the fourth quarter to make the score 31-7. With the outcome of the contest decided, the two teams traded possessions for the remainder of the game.
Saxton finished the game 20-for-36 for 271 yards and four touchdowns, connecting with seven different receivers. Ward had nine catches for 157 yards and three scores, becoming the first Wasp since 2004 to record three receiving touchdowns. Rodgers caught the other touchdown for Emory & Henry, and also ran for 43 yards while sophomore running back Chris Thompson (Blue Ridge, Va.) had 46 yards on the ground.
Wasp senior safety Ryan Byrd (Grottoes, Va.) led all players with 10 tackles, two passes defended and a forced fumble while redshirt freshman corner Eric Johnson (Roanoke, Va.) made seven stops and returned a fumble 26 yards. Junior linebacker Rasheen Williams (Charlotte, N.C.) also had seven tackles and a half sack.
Bridgewater was paced offensively by Pisarcik's 8-for-15 passing effort for 141 yards while Jennings caught six passes for 103 yards and a touchdown. Nick Ollie led the rushing attack, netting 61 of the Eagles' 68 yards on the afternoon. Defensively, Logan Whitaker led BC with nine tackles while Chance Morris had eight stops.
Emory & Henry will remain at home next weekend when it hosts Hampden-Sydney College at 1:00 p.m. The game will highlight the Homecoming weekend festivities for the Wasps.
-photo courtesy of Dave Grace