LINCOLN, Neb. - In one of the longest and strangest games in Coe College football history, the Kohawks spoiled Nebraska Wesleyan's homecoming with a 48-17 victory.
Coe put up over 35 points for the fourth-straight game while battling rain throughout most of the game and a pair of long lightning delays. Coe's first game in the state of Nebraska since a 0-0 tie with Omaha University in 1934 lasted just under five hours. With over two hours of delay in the first half and second half combined, halftime was shorted to just 10 minutes, with Coe not even leaving the field.
The Kohawks forced a Prairie Wolves punt on the opening drive. Four plays later, Gavin Glenn (Adel, Iowa/ADM) threw his first interception of the year at the Coe 30 yard line. Nebraska Wesleyan was not able to capitalize, as Kramer Rath missed a 31-yard field goal attempt. Coe was forced to punt on the ensuing possession, but Arlie Myers fumbled the punt for Nebraska Wesleyan, asRyan Miller (Fairbank, Iowa/Wapsie Valley) jumped on the ball at the Prairie Wolves 14 yard line. Coe couldn't get much going on offense and settled for a 33-yard field goal from Brandon Abbas (Aplington, Iowa/Aplington Parkersburg) with 5:39 to play in the first quarter.
Following another Nebraska Wesleyan punt, the Kohawks put a touchdown scoring drive together. On second-and-six, Glenn foundDemetrius Harper (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Prairie) for a 32-yard touchdown pass. A kick by Abbas gave Coe a 10-0 lead with 1:15 left in the opening quarter. On the first play of the second quarter, Nick Elsbury (Byron, Ill./Byron) recovered a fumble by Ben Green at the Nebraska Wesleyan 40 yard line. On the next play, Trevor Heitland (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Kennedy) went 40 yards for a touchdown. Abbas made the kick, as Coe took a 17-0 lead with 14:43 to play in the second quarter.
The game entered its first rain delay in the middle of the next Prairie Wolves possession. Coe came up with a stop after the delay and went back to work on offense. Brandon Roseberry (Center Point, Iowa/Center Point-Urbana) finished an eight play, 55-yard drive with a three-yard touchdown run with 7:51 to play. The PAT by Abbas gave Coe a 25-0 lead. On the final possession of the opening half, Nebraska Wesleyan scored on a 35-yard field goal by Rath as time expired, as Coe took a 24-3 lead into halftime.
Coe was forced to punt on the opening possession of the second half. Nebraska Wesleyan went 90 yards on 11 plays, as Green found Joel Wiedel for a 24-yard touchdown pass on third-and-nine with 9:17 left in the third quarter, cutting Coe's lead to 24-10. Coe needed just three plays to score again, as Glenn found a wide open Mitchell Malloy (Riverside, Ill./Riverside-Brookfield) for an 82-yard touchdown pass, the longest of both their careers. A kick by Abbas gave Coe a 31-10 lead with 8:21 left in the third quarter. The Prairie Wolves would score on their next possession, as Green found Bryce Darner for a one-yard touchdown pass in the back of the end zone on fourth-and-goal, cutting Coe's lead to 31-17 with 5:09 left in the third quarter.
A second lightning delay started right after the kickoff, with this one lasting just under an hour. Both teams punted on their first possession after the delay. Coe then took advantage, as Heitland went 63 yards untouched for a touchdown. The kick by Abbas gave Coe a 38-17 lead with 2:57 to play in the third quarter. Coe's final touchdown came on a four-yard touchdown run by Glenn with 12:12 to play. The kick by Abbas gave Coe a 45-17 lead. On Coe's final possession, Abbas nailed a 33-yard field goal with 2:25 to play, giving Coe the 48-17 victory.
Coe held a 275-87 advantage in rushing yards, while Nebraska Wesleyan had a 264-194 advantage in passing yards. Coe had 469 yards on 65 plays, while the Prairie Wolves had 351 yards on 89 total plays. Coe was 4-of-12 on third downs, while the Prairie Wolves were 9-of-20. Coe scored on all four trips to the red zone, while Nebraska Wesleyan scored on two of five trips to the red zone.
Heitland rushed 19 times for a career-high 173 yards. Roseberry also rushed 19 times for a career-high 84 yards. Glenn was 12-of-20 for 194 yards. Harper caught four passes for 55 yards, while Heitland caught three passes for 25 yards.
Ryan Leonard (Center Junction, Iowa/Midland) led the defense with nine tackles, tying a career-high. Jarred Hodge (Ormond Beach, Fla./Mainland) and Terrance Hall each had seven tackles, a new career-high for Hodge.Drew Heitland (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Kennedy) and Austin Troendle (Waukon, Iowa/Waukon) each tied a career-high with six tackles.
The Kohawks (4-0, 2-0 IIAC) return to action on Saturday, as they host Wartburg (2-1, 1-0 IIAC). Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Clark Field. A link to live video and stats is available at CoeAthletics.com.