DOVER, DE –
The match-up between the top two scoring offenses in the Atlantic Central Football Conference certainly lived up to its billing, as defending league champion Wesley held off Frostburg State, 44-36, in an offensive explosion Saturday afternoon at Wolverine Stadium.
The teams combined for 55 first downs and 1,019 yards of total offense in one of the wildest games in Frostburg State history.
For the second straight week, Frostburg State (2-2, 0-1 ACFC) struck first with a big play, as senior DeNelle Hale (Baltimore, Md./Dunbar) took a screen pass and raced 59 yards for a touchdown on the third play of the game.
However, in what would be a recurring theme the rest of the afternoon, the Wolverines, who entered the contest averaging a league-high 35.0 points per game, answered with a seven-play, 70-yard drive that ended with Fred Edwards' 15-yard scoring run just 2:33 later and knotted the game at seven.
The Bobcats countered on their next possession, moving in front again just four plays later when Hale scampered 54 yards for another score. The extra point attempt was blocked and FSU held a 13-7 lead a little more than five minutes into the game.
Wesley (3-1, 1-0) pulled to within 13-10 on Chris Novak's 23-yard field goal one minute into the second quarter and then moved in front for good when Edwards raced 62 yards for a score with 7:06 left in the first half.
Wolverine senior Jason Visconti, last year's ACFC Offensive Player of the Year, then heated up with the first of his four scoring strikes on the day, finding tight end Josh Kline for a 19-yard touchdown pass with 2:15 remaining before halftime as the hosts took a 23-13 lead into the break.
Visconti capped Wesley's 23-point scoring run with a 30-yard scoring pass to James Lowe which gave the Wolverines a seemingly comfortable 30-13 advantage with 8:57 remaining in the third.
FSU wouldn't roll over, rallying for 14 quick points to make it a 30-27 contest. Burrough capped a nine-play, 60-yard march with a 13-yard touchdown to junior Aaron Deeb (Rockville, Md./Rockville), and the Bobcats executed a perfect onsides kick to regain possession at the Wesley 43.
Freshman Bereket Godsey (Baltimore, Md./Eastern Tech) dove in from a yard out just over four minutes later, but the extra point attempt was blocked again and the Bobcats trailed by three.
The Wolverines, with the nation's 19th ranked offense at 444.0 total yards per game, continued to keep the Bobcats at bay and regained a 10-point advantage when Visconti found Lowe again for an eight-yard score to pull ahead, 37-27, with 10:48 remaining.
On the ensuing possession, Frostburg State drove to the Wesley seven-yard line before settling for freshman Jarred Boehner's (Fredericksburg, Va./Courtland) 24-yard field goal which brought the Bobcats to within a touchdown with 8:34 remaining.
Special teams, which sparked the Bobcats to their 55-24 win over Chowan last weekend, was part of this week's downfall, as Wesley blocked a punt by freshman Nick Quisgard (Baltimore, Md./John Carroll) at the FSU 12-yard line with four minutes left in the game.
Visconti cashed in for the Wolverines two plays later when he hit Joe Able for a 12-yard scoring pass to give Wesley some breathing room, 44-30.
The Bobcats made things interesting down to the wire, pulling to within eight when Burrough hit junior Tim Wilkins (Baltimore, Md./Mervo) for a 13-yard score with 51 seconds on the clock.
After recovering the onsides kick, Wesley tried to run the clock out, but the snap on fourth-and-20 from its 44 sailed over Visconti's head, giving FSU the ball at the Wolverine 34 with nine seconds left.
Burrough's desperation attempt on the last play of the game went out of the end zone.
Burrough finished the day 17-of-39 passing for a career-high 251 yards and three touchdowns, while Visconti was 30-of-48 for 337 yards.
Hale ran for 154 yards on 26 carries and added one catch for 59 yards. Edwards led the Wesley ground attack with 189 yards on 24 attempts.
The Bobcats return to action on Saturday when they host Catholic University at 1:00 p.m.
For further information on this release, contact:
Office of Sports Information
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD 21532-2303