BUENA VISTA, Va. — The Southern Virginia University football team fought hard against No. 6 Wesley College on Saturday afternoon, but came up short as the Wolverines took the win 28-7.
On the first drive of the game, the Knights (1-4, 1-4 NJAC) were forced to punt, but were able to recover the ball at the Wesley 35-yard line. Six plays later, junior running back Akiva Wedge found the end zone on a 1-yard rush to give the Knights a 7-0 lead.
Later in the first quarter, a 25-yard field goal attempt by Knights' kicker Jackson Hatch was blocked to give the Wolverines (4-0, 3-0 NJAC) the momentum. Wesley then completed a 56-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at seven at the end of the first quarter.
Midway through the second period, Wesley powered down the field and ended up scoring on another touchdown pass, giving the Wolverines a 14-7 lead which they took into halftime.
In the second half, the Knights did an excellent job of moving the ball down the field, but untimely penalties and turnovers cost the team.
Wesley scored one touchdown each in the third and fourth quarters to finish the game with a final score of 28-7, the closest game the nationally ranked squad has had this season.
Despite scoring only seven points, the Knights showed huge improvements on the offensive side of the ball, collecting 354 total yards and 21 first downs. Southern Virginia had a lot of success on the ground, rushing for 204 yard and the team's only touchdown. Tailback Akiva Wedge led all rushers with 76 yards on 23 carries.
Quarterback Tate Briggs had a solid day as well, completing 16 of 30 passes for 150 yards and rushing for 42 yards. Freshman wide receiver Kevin Adams caught four passes for 41 yards, while Josh Newman and Caden Brewster each hauled in three each.
Junior safety Neil Davis had himself an excellent game, finishing with 12 tackles, and interception, and a pass breakup, while defensive back Payton Madsen had an interception which he returned for 49 yards to go along with his six takedowns. Albert Green IV and Bishope Apodaca also played well defensively, totaling nine and seven tackles, respectively.
After a bye next week, Southern Virginia returns to action on Saturday, October 18 at Apprentice. Kickoff is slated for 1:00 p.m. in Newport News, Va.