The College of Wooster (2-0, 1-0 North Coast Athletic Conference), off to its first 2-0 start since 2008, returns home for Black & Gold Weekend - a combination of homecoming and family weekend - and hosts Ohio Wesleyan University (0-1, 0-0 NCAC) on Saturday, Sept. 16. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m.
Wooster is coming off a 45-21 win over Allegheny College on Saturday evening, extending the Fighting Scots' win streak to five over the Gators. Ohio Wesleyan was idle last week, and last played back on Saturday, Sept. 2. The Battling Bishops dropped a 36-15 game to crosstown rival Otterbein University.
On the Air: MCTV will carry this week's contest online at https://portal.stretchinternet.com/wooster. MCTV customers living in Wayne and Stark Counties can also catch the replay in standard definition on Ch. 22 at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, 12 p.m. on Sunday and Monday, and 3 p.m. on Sunday and Monday, or watch in high definition over on Ch. 621 at 8 p.m. on Saturday, 9 a.m. on Sunday, and 9 p.m. on Monday. WKVX 960 AM will carry this week's contest live and online at http://wqkt.com.
All-Time Series: Ohio Wesleyan leads the all-time series that dates back to 1901 31-30, thanks to the Bishops' current three-game win streak. Wooster's last win in the series came in 2013, and that's when the Scots rallied back from a 20-point fourth-quarter deficit to win 28-27 to cap the season with a 7-3 record. This Saturday's contest marks the first time since 2011 these two teams haven't met in the season finale. In 2011, Wooster won 10-6 in the fourth week of the season (Sept. 24).
Last Meeting: On Nov. 12, 2016, Wooster came away with three takeaways for the game, but touchdowns on each of the first three drives by Ohio Wesleyan shifted the momentum the Battling Bishops' way as Ohio Wesleyan topped Wooster 42-14 at Selby Stadium in the 2016 finale.
Offense Notes: Senior quarterback Gary Muntean (Poland, Ohio/Struthers) moved past 2010 alumnus Austin Holter for third on the College's all-time passing list during Wooster's win at Allegheny and now has 5,765 career passing yards. Muntean entered the week second in Div. III in points responsible for thanks to 10 total touchdowns (7 passing, 3 rushing). Sophomore Nick Strausbaugh (Fredericksburg, Ohio/Waynedale) turned four receptions into 136 yards and a pair of scores during last week's game, and his 30.71 yards per catch average ranks 17th in Div. III. Sophomore Jacob Lewis (Silver Creek, N.Y./Silver Creek Central) has factored heavily into the passing game as Wooster's tight end with six receptions for 118 yards and three touchdowns. In the win over Allegheny, Wooster had four different receivers record a reception that went for at least 30 yards in junior Connor Allan (East Aurora, N.Y./East Aurora), sophomore Jason Cerniglia (Level Green, Pa./Serra District Catholic), Lewis, and Strausbaugh - who had two, including a 67-yarder. On the ground, junior Antonio Bailey (Duluth, Ga./Meadowcreek) is averaging 92 yards per game on the year, and 4.6 yards per tote. In fact, Wooster's well over 150 yards per game rushing (168.5) so far this year after only averaging 103.3 a year ago. Wooster went 3-for-3 last week on fourth down attempts, including two on the game's opening drive when Muntean connected with Lewis for 15 yards on a fourth-and-2 play and later to junior Russell Boston (Pittsburgh, Pa./Liberty (Wash.)) for six yards on a fourth-and-3 play.
Defense Notes: Wooster's youthful look on defense continued last week as four freshmen, three sophomores, three juniors, and senior Patrick Johnson (Homewood, Ill./Homewood-Flossmoor) comprised the starting 11. Freshman Beau Greenwood (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon) continued to impress. One week after a seven-tackle debut, Greenwood lodged the ball loose from Allegheny's Jake Wilson in what turned out to be a game-changing turnover that eventually put Wooster up 28-21 when Muntean capped a three-play drive with a 2-yard rushing touchdown. Six Scots had at least six tackles in the win over the Gators, five of which are either freshmen or sophomores. One of the sophomores, Christian Santos (Yeadon, Pa./Penn Wood Senior) continues to lead the team in tackles with 17 on the young season. Sophomore Robert Alvarez (Fort Washington, Md./Riverdale Baptist School) came through with a big sack for a loss of six yards on a third-and-10 play early in the fourth quarter.
Special Teams Notes: Muntean continued to handle punting duties for Wooster and he booted a 48-yarder during Saturday's win. On the year, Muntean's averaging 43.0 yards per punt on four attempts. Freshman Cam Pollard (Cleveland, Ohio/John Hay) has taken over as Wooster's primary returner on both kicks and punts now. Last week, Pollard had a 36-yard punt return and a 29-yard kick return.
This and That: Wooster's one of four Div. III programs in the country with a duo of receivers with at least three tight ends as the Scots join Franklin College, Hartwick College, and Hendrix College on that list. Wooster last started 3-0 in 2008, and prior to that had a five-year run of 3-0 starts from 2002-06.