KWU Football holds Bethel scoreless in second half, comes away with 24-14 win

KWU Football holds Bethel scoreless in second half, comes away with 24-14 win

Kansas Wesleyan held the Bethel Threshers without a second half point and just 64 yards of offense as the Coyotes came away with a 24-14 win on Saturday night at Joe W. Goering Field at Thresher Stadium.

The win was the eighth straight win in North Newton for the Coyotes, a streak dating back to 2009 and was the 14th win in the last 15 meetings for the Coyotes in the series.

Wesleyan's defense was again solid, holding Bethel to just 213 yards of total offense in the game, while the Coyote offense had 264 yards of offense, 180 through the air, as KWU got the passing game going.

Bethel scored first on its first drive of the game, capping a 10 play, 66 yard drive with a 35-yard pass from DJ Ciers to Trevon Madison with 6:45 to go in the first.

The scoring drive was the only one of the first quarter. The Coyotes had a short field to work with on the first drive of the second quarter and capitalized.

When the drive stalled at the Bethel 25, Talon Cope got the Coyotes on the board connecting on a 42-yard field goal with 11:12 to go in the half.

Wesleyan's defense then stepped up, forcing two Bethel turnovers that turned into 14 points. The Coyotes forced a fumble by Corey Catron that was recovered by Deyondre Gomez after being knocked loose by Julian Urioste and four plays later were in the endzone as Richard Lara hit Tyler Boston for a 23-yard touchdown with 8:23 left in the half.

Quatama Massaquoi picked off a pass on Bethel's next drive and returned it to the Bethel 25 and two plays later Lara hit a wide open Nick Allsman for a 24-yard touchdown pass and it was 17-7 Coyotes with 5:57 left.

Madison got Bethel back within a field goal returning a Griffin Wiltse punt 72 yards for a touchdown with 2:44 to go before the half.

The Coyotes led 17-14 at intermission.

On Wesleyan's first drive of the second half, the Coyotes had to score twice. Lara appeared to hit Luke Armstrong for a 64-yard passing touchdown, but Armstrong was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, and wiped the points off the board.

Nevertheless, the Coyotes found the endzone again five plays later when Lara hit Armstrong again, this time from three yards out to give KWU a 24-14 lead with 9:29 left in the third.

Neither team had luck getting out of their respective side of the field until late in the fourth when the Coyotes turned Bethel over on downs, taking over at the Bethel 43 with 3:11 left. The KWU drive appeared to stall, but Bethel was called for roughing the kicker on the punt and KWU had new life at the Bethel 28 and was able to run out the clock for the win.

Lara was 18 of 28 passing for 180 yards and three scores. Allsman had 49 yards rushing on 15 carries to lead the rushers. Lomax-Spivey had 47 yards receiving on three catches. Defensively, Ricardo Garcia led the Coyotes with eight stops while Jhalen Haynes had seven. Josh King-Bradley had two sacks and Massaquoi had an interception.

Wesleyan returns home next Saturday to face McPherson in the final non-division game for the Coyotes. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. on Gene Bissell Field at JRI Hospitality Stadium at the Graves Family Sports Complex.

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