Bluejays Fall to 16th-Ranked Titans
ELMHURST, Ill. - The Elmhurst College football team dropped to 3-3 overall and 1-2 in the CCIW following a 24-12 homecoming loss to 16th-ranked Illinois Wesleyan University.
Illinois Wesleyan (6-0, 3-0 CCIW) held the Bluejays' high-powered offense to a season-low 249 yards, almost 250 yards less than the Bluejays' season average entering the game.
The Titans also had their way on offense, eating up 33 minutes of the clock, including almost 19 minutes in the second half. Illinois Wesleyan totaled 370 yards of offense, accoutning for 272 yards through the air.
Elmhurst drove inside the Titans' territory on each of their first two drives, only to be turned away by IWU's defense. The Titans used a big-play to jump on the scoreboard late in the first quarter. On a second-and-five from their own 42-yard line, Rob Gallik hit Joey Driver down the middle for a 58-yard scoring strike to give the Titans a 7-0 lead.
The Bluejays answered back on the ensuing possession, driving to the Titans' 24-yard line and settling for a 40-yard Trevor Spaulding field goal to cut IWU's lead down to 7-3.
Illinois Wesleyan responded by mounting a 13-play, 68-yard drive that ate up over six-minutes of clock. The drive was keyed by a pass interference call on the end zone on a third-and-goal situation, giving the Titans a fresh set of downs from the Bluejays' two-yard line. Gallik capped the drive with a three-yard score to put the Titans on top 14-3.
Elmhurst responded with its own scoring drive, moving 57 yards in seven plays. Aided by a good field position due to the wind, the Bluejays began the drive from their own 43-yard line. Joe Furco hit Rodney Payton on a 13-yard scoring strike to cap the drive. A bad snap resulted in the extra point being missed by the Bluejays, giving the Titans a 14-9 lead.
The Bluejays started strong in the second half, moving to the Titans 15-yard line and settling for a 32-yard field goal from Spaulding to pull to within two points at 14-12.
After back-to-back three-and-outs by both teams, the Titans went to work on another drive. IWU drove 70 yards in 13 plays, eating up 6:48 in the process. The Titans converted twice on third down and kept the drive alive with a fourth down conversion at the Elmhurst 14-yard line. Gallik hit Tate Musselman on a two-yard scoring play to give the Titans a 21-12 lead.
After an Elmhurst punt, the Titans went right back to work on offense, driving 55 yards in 14 plays and taking 6:29 off the clock. Tony Angelos booted a 43-yard field goal to give IWU a 24-12 lead and account for the final points of the game.
Gallik accounted for all three of the Titans' touchdowns, rushing for one score and passing for two. Gallik finished 20-of-31 through the air for 272 yards and rushed for 16. Cameron Blossom totaled 74 yards on 25 carries for the Titans. Drive was the Titans' top target, catching six passes for 105 yards.
Scottie Williams led Elmhurst on the ground, carrying 28 times for 127 yards, his fourth straight game of over 120 rushing yards. Furco finished 13-of-24 for 110 yards and a touchdown.
Defensively, Elmhurst was led by Wayne Tuckson's 14 tackles. Jamall Lane added 10 stops for he Bluejays and Pete Alfano totaled eight, including the Bluejays' only sack of the game.
Scott Wenzel led Illinois Wesleyan's defense with 11 tackles while also forcing a fumble.
Elmhurst hosts Millikin University next Saturday (October 22) at 1:00 p.m.