Courtesy of Wayne State Athletics
UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mich.
- The Wayne State University football team improved to 7-2 overall with a 41-27 triumph at Saginaw Valley (3-6 overall, 3-5 GLIAC) Saturday afternoon. It was WSU's first win over the Cardinals since a 21-9 victory on Sept. 14, 1991.
SVSU took a 7-0 lead just 70 seconds into the contest on a one-yard run by Ronnie Lark, two plays after he had a 76-yard gain on the first play from scrimmage.
The Warriors responded with a 10-play, 67-yard drive that took nearly five minutes to knot the game at seven. Redshirt freshman running back Toney Davis (Muskegon Hts., Mich./Muskegon) concluded the drive with a one-yard scamper.
Following a 29-yard punt on the Cardinals ensuing possession, WSU drove 50 yards in nine plays with junior wide receiver Troy Burrell (Port Huron, Mich.) hauling in a six-yard scoring toss from sophomore signal caller Mickey Mohner (Painesville, Ohio/Harvey) on a third-and-goal.
After a 16-yard SVSU punt, the Warriors took over at the Cardinal 49 and went 39 yards in eight plays culminating in a 27-yard field goal by freshman Stefan Terleckyj (Warren, Mich./Warren Mott). The three-point play gave WSU a 17-7 advantage with 9:13 left in the first half.
The hosts cut the Warrior lead to three just before intermission as Lark scored again from a yard out.
Wayne State took the second half kickoff and marched 62 yards in eight plays with junior running back Josh Renel (Rochester Hills, Mich./Rochester Adams) scoring on a 17-yard run.
SVSU would answer on a 25-yard TD reception by Andrew Beaver from Jonathon Jennings.
Holding just a three-point lead (24-21), WSU responded with an eight-play drive that culminated in a 30-yard field goal by Terleckyj.
On Saginaw Valley's third play from scrimmage, junior defensive end Jon Robinson (Livonia, Mich./Churchill) forced a fumble that was recovered by junior linebacker Jordan Miller (Cincinnati, Ohio/Colerain) at the SVSU 34.
Seven plays later following a 12-yard TD run by Renel, Wayne State had a 34-21 lead with less than a minute remaining in the third period. What proved to be the eventual game-winning drive came in to stiff wind.
On a third-and-eight from the SVSU 37, junior safety Jeremy Jones (Grand Rapids, Mich./Rockford) stepped in front of the receiver for what might have been his second interception of the game (a first half interception was ruled incomplete by the umpire).
Davis tallied his second touchdown run of the game on WSU's fifth play of the drive. Terleckyj's PAT, which set a WSU record for most consecutive PAT in a season (34), put the Warriors ahead 41-21.
The Cardinals answered with an eight-play, 55-yard drive which included a 15-yard TD reception by Beaver on fourth-and-five.
After a WSU turnover, Jones had another interception on a third-down play, which allowed the Warriors to chew up nearly six minutes of the clock. The 13-play drive included four first downs and SVSU had to burn two of its timeouts.
The Cardinals, trailing by 14 points, drove into the red zone, but redshirt freshman safety Antwon Robinson (Southfield, Mich.) came up with an interception, the third consecutive game he has recorded a pick.
Two Mohner runs, followed by a Davis first down run ran out the clock.
WSU had both of its running backs surpass the 100-yard plateau with Renel gaining 161 yards on 29 carries (5.6 average) and Davis recording 112 yards on 22 attempts (5.1 average). Ronnie Lark led SVSU with 164 yards on 19 carries.
Mohner completed 12-of-21 passes for 147 with one touchdown and no interceptions. Charles Dowdell started for the Cardinals and was 1-of-2 for -1 yards and was sacked. Jennings completed 13-of-24 for 132 yards but was intercepted three times.
Burrell led all WSU receivers with five catches for 85 yards and a score. Beaver had a game-high six catches for 56 yards and two touchdowns for the Cardinals.
Jones had a game-high 13 tackles (4-9) to go along with his two interceptions.
Wayne State will have its home regular-season finale next Saturday at noon against Indianapolis.