VIDEO: Wesley routs Cortland to advance to National Quaterfinals
Wesley's defense scored two touchdowns in the first 2:06 game, sparking a 56-6 victory over Cortland State in the 2nd round of the NCAA Division III National Football Tournament.
Cortland took the opening kickoff, but Chris Rose's third down pass was tipped into the hands of Wesley safety Mike Brandenburg who returned it 22 yards for a 7-0 lead just 46 yards into the game.
Eighty seconds later, Rose was hit from behind by Devin Hardy, dislodging the ball from Rose. Sosthene Kapepula then picked up the pigskin and ran 28 yards to the house, putting Wesley up 14-0 just 2:08 into the game.
The game then settled down, with the teams exchanging 3-and-outs and Cortland's offense picking up a pair of Mike DeBose field goals surrounded by a Wesley 73-yard drive which ended in a 3-yard Steve Koudossou reverse touchdown.
Koudossou supplied the backbreaker on the opening official play of the second half as he took a screen pass from Justin Sottilare, and thanks to some nice blocking sprinted straight ahead 78-yards to the end zone on a 28-6 led.
Wesley would be forced to punt on its next drive, but then scored on their next 4 posessions: Chris Cummings' 1-yard plunge, a 23-yard pass from Sottilare to Matt Barile, an 8-yard fade from Sottilare to Matt Bundy, and then a 34-yard run by Devar Robinson through the Red Dragon secondary.
Sean Hopkins paced Wesley's defensive effort with two of the team's five interceptions, including picking off a Tyler Hughes pass near the goal line in the final minute to keep Cortland out of the end zone for the day. Wesley now has set a school-record for most interceptions in a season.
Sottilare finished 8-of-17 for 192 yards and the three touchdowns, while Askia Jahad rushed for a game-high 90 yards. Rose was 14-for-26 for 100 yards and 4 intereceptions for the New Jersey Athletic Conference Champions who finished at 9-2.
Next up for Wesley is Mary Hardin-Baylor, the team that defeated the Wolverines 32-25 back in Week 2. The teams met in last year's South Region Championship, with Wesley holding on for a 27-24 victory. You can hear the game Saturday at 1pm on 1150AM WDEL, WDEL.com, and the WDEL Smartphone app.
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