The College of Wooster (4-2, 3-2 North Coast Athletic Conference) heads out on the road for two straight weeks starting with this Saturday's contest at Hiram College (2-4, 1-4 NCAC). Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. from Charles A. Henry Field.
Wooster is looking for its second two-game win streak of the year as the Scots opened the season 3-0 and then got back on track with a 38-28 win over Oberlin College last Saturday at John P. Papp Stadium. Hiram, which picked up its second win of the season last weekend, will be looking to build upon a 62-56 shootout over Kenyon College.
On the Air: Hiram will carry this week's contest online and the link will be posted at https://woosterathletics.com when available. WKVX 960 AM will carry this week's contest live and online at http://wqkt.com.
All-Time Series: Wooster leads the all-time series that dates back to 1906 38-5, but Hiram did win the 2015 contest at home 40-36 to snap a 11-game losing streak in the series. Wooster got back on track last year with a 42-23 win, and all-time Wooster is 15-3 in Hiram, but the home and away designations are unknown for seven of the first nine games in series history.
Last Meeting: On Nov. 5, 2016, Gary Muntean (Poland, Ohio/Struthers) tossed five passing touchdowns, making him the fourth quarterback in program history to do so, and Nick Cummings caught four of them, tying the single-game program record, and marking the first four-touchdown game receiving since 1999. Additionally, Cummings became the third receiver in program history with a 200-yard game. In the game, Muntean surpassed Austin Holter for most completions in a single season, and tied Holter for the single-season attempts record.
Offense Notes: Sticking with Muntean, the senior signal-caller has achieved a rare statistical oddity as the Poland, Ohio native has a game with 362 (Ohio Wesleyan University), 363 (Oberlin), 364 (Allegheny College), and 365 (DePauw University) passing yards this season. Last week, Muntean joined W Association Hall of Famer Rich Judd and former Wooster great Richard Barnes as the only quarterbacks in program history to surpass 7,000 career passing yards, and in fact, Muntean's only 222 yards away from matching Barnes' career record. In two career games against Hiram, Muntean's 62-for-92 for 863 yards and seven passing touchdowns. Entering the week, Muntean is billed as Div. III's 10th-most efficient passer at 179.4, and he has an incredible 19-to-1 touchdown to interception ratio thus far. In fact, Muntean's 19 passing touchdowns are the 13th-most in Div. III. Sophomore Nick Strausbaugh (Fredericksburg, Ohio/Waynedale) logged his fifth straight 100-yard receiving game on Saturday with seven receptions for 125 yards. The electrifying sophomore is up to 754 yards receiving on the year, and that's the ninth-most in program history, and the most since Darrian Owens logged 857 in 2014. Junior Antonio Bailey (Duluth, Ga./Meadowcreek) rushed for over 100 yards in last week's win. Bailey logged 103 yards on 19 carries, and that stat line was similar to his other 100-yard game on the year that came in the win over Bluffton University. Against the Beavers, Bailey went for 106 stripes on 21 carries.
Defense Notes: Senior Patrick Johnson (Homewood, Ill./Homewood-Flossmoor) moved into the team lead in tackles (43) after his second straight double-digit tackle game. Johnson's followed up his 14 stops from the Wabash College contest with a team-high 11 against Oberlin. During the game, Johnson forced his second fumble of the year, and it was recovered by junior Hunter Coia (Oldsmar, Fla./Canterbury). Notable, that marked the first fumble recovered by Wooster this year in a home game. Freshman Cam Pollard (Cleveland, Ohio/John Hay) logged a big game as well with a 43-yard interception return for a touchdown, marking the second time Wooster's scored a defensive touchdown on the year. Classmate Beau Greenwood (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon) recorded his first career interception during the Oberlin win. Greenwood's came in the end zone, and he returned it out to Wooster's 32-yard line. In fact, Greenwood and Johnson have been in on eight of Wooster's 11 takeaways on the year as Greenwood has a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, and an interception, while Johnson has two forced fumbles, a pair of picks, and a fumble recovery. Wooster now has four players with over 40 tackles in Johnson (43), freshman Danté Fair (Pataskala, Ohio/Watkins Memorial) (42), Greenwood (41), and sophomore Christian Santos (Yeadon, Pa./Penn Wood Senior) (41).
Special Teams Notes: Senior Trevor Bowden (Eatonton, Ga./Gatewood Schools) knocked in a 25-yard field goal on Saturday moving him to 4-for-5 on the year. Of note, Bowden's now in solo possession of third-place on the career field goals list at the College at 19. Richie McNally is the career record-holder at 27, while Andrew Milligan chipped in 24 between 2004-07. Both Bowden and Muntean now have a punt of over 60 yards on the year, and Muntean's second-half boot versus Oberlin rolled into the end zone from 64 yards out. Two weeks ago, Bowden booted a 78-yard punt that was downed at Wabash's 1-yard line, marking the longest punt in program history.