Tigers Cruise to 2-0, 56-17 Over NC Wesleyan

ROCKY MOUNT, NC-The Hampden-Sydney Tigers followed their 63-9 season opening win with a 56-17 road win over North Carolina Wesleyan. With the win, the Tigers improve to 2-0 while the Battling Bishops fall to 0-2. Hampden-Sydney was tough to stop offensively, amassing 552 yards of offense, while Travis Lane (Richmond, VA/Mills Godwin) was nearly flawless completing 28 of his 32 attempts for 389 yards and seven touchdowns. Senior receiver Kyle Vance (Onley, VA/Broadwater Academy) also had a breakout day, catching 11 of Lane's passes for 170 yards and four touchdowns.

It did not take Lane and Vance long to hook up in the end zone. Vance hauled in the 31-yard touchdown reception just 58 seconds into the game to give the Tigers the quick 7-0 lead. While sophomore tight end Eric Gorsline (Virginia Beach, VA/Norfolk Academy) caught the next two Tiger touchdowns in the first quarter, the Tiger defense did not give any ground. In fact, they pushed the Bishops back 33 yards total in the first quarter.

The defense carried over into the second quarter, forcing two more three-and-outs from the Bishops. Meanwhile, the offense continued to shine. Lane and Vance built upon the 21-0 first quarter lead, when they connected on a five yard pass just two and a half minutes into the second quarter putting Hampden-Sydney up 35-0.

After another three-and-out from the defense, Kevin Quicker's 50 yard punt put the Tigers on their own two-yard line. Lane hit Vance for a 43 yard reception to start the drive, getting the offense in friendlier territory. Two throws to Vance for 28 yards, and two Evan King (Lewisburg, VA/Episcopal) rushes for 18 yards, the Tigers were quickly in striking distance. Two plays later, senior running back Kirk Rohle (Mechanicsville, VA/Hanover) ran in for the two-yard score putting his team up 35-0 heading into intermission.

North Carolina Wesleyan made halftime adjustments and was able to score on a 10 play, 81-yard drive to start the half. Jacques Alston's 33 yard rush made it a 35-7 game.

Hampden-Sydney responded in the next three minutes, however. Rohle accounted for 27 yards before Lane hit Vance for the third time in the end zone on a 25 yard strike.

The Bishops' ensuing drive was again cut short with a three-and-out. Zach Morgan (Virginia Beach, VA/Ocean Lakes) and Alex Price (Fairfax, VA/Fairfax) stopped Jamal Smith three yards in the backfield to start the drive. After two incomplete passes, the Bishops punted. One play later, Hampden-Sydney tacked on seven more points. Lane hit sophomore Dallas Steelman (Walnut Cove, NC/Glenn) for a 50 yard touchdown on an 11 second drive to put the game at 49-7.

Though the Bishops scored another touchdown to make it 49-14, the Tigers quickly responded on the first play of the fourth quarter with a 12 yard touchdown pass from Lane to Vance.

North Carolina Wesleyan was able to get the final score of the game, and Quicker's 37 yard field goal made it a 56-17 game.

The Tigers tallied 148 rushing yards and an impressive 404 passing yards. Rohle led the rushing attack with 78 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries. Rohle also had four receptions for 22 yards. John Michael Sparagna (Mechanicsville, VA/Atlee) also hauled in four receptions for 65 yards.

North Carolina Wesleyan's passing game was led by John Jackson's 24 completions on 34 attempts for 257 yards. Jarret Coffield was his favorite target with five receptions for 95 yards. Alston led the way on the ground with 77 yards and both Bishop touchdowns.

Defensively, sophomore Sean Stewart (Alexandria, VA/Mount Vernon) was the high man with nine tackles, two pass break ups, one forced fumble and one recovery. Kenny Fryman (Mechanicsville, VA/Hanover) and Price each had seven tackles. Fryman added a sack and 2.5 tackles-for-loss. As a defense, the Tigers recorded two sacks for a loss of 15 yards and 6.0 tackles for a loss of 27 yards.

Hampden-Sydney returns home next Saturday, September 17 as it hosts the Panthers of Ferrum College. Kick-off is set for 1:00 pm.