Eagles Cruise To 2-0 Heading Into Bye Week
Posted: September 8, 2012
BRIDGEWATER – With 1:21 remaining in the first half and Greensboro College driving from its own 4-yard line, Bridgewater College fullback Nick Wimer didn’t figure he’d be in the end zone anytime soon.
Even when Wimer got his number called moments later – BC got the ball back after a safety – a touchdown wasn’t supposed to be in the cards.
“I think the coach’s initial goal was to get into field-goal range,” the senior said, a statement that was later confirmed by BC coach Michael Clark. “But anybody will take a touchdown.”
Wimer’s 31-yard scoring run on a fullback trap completed a 9-0 spurt in a 13-second span of game time, opening up a 23-point halftime lead in the Eagles’ 33-7 win over Greensboro in their home opener at Jopson Field.
“Overall in the game, that might have been the nail in the coffin,” said Wimer, a 2009 Spotswood High School graduate.
Or at least the last nail. Before that, BC (2-0) hammered a few that they hadn’t used in years.
Sophomore Jordan Hartman ran back a punt 69 yards for a touchdown as the first quarter expired, the first punt-return TD for BC since Sept. 26, 2009. In the fourth quarter, freshman Ryan Griggs knocked in a 36-yard field goal, the longest conversion since Nov. 13, 2010 – in the rain, mind you.
And then there was the rain, which, for several minutes, came down nearly sideways in sheets, with a handful of fans in the BC student section – including a few shirtless males – cheering wildly.
“It’s almost like the scene out of [the movie] 300,” Wimer said with a smile. “Everyone’s just going crazy.”
Rain or shine, the Eagles won a game they should have won. The Pride (1-1) also came into the game 1-0, but that win came against Guilford (2-8 in 2011) after they went 0-10 the year before.
“I think when you look at [Bridgewater], they’re playing with a majority of [physically] developed kids,” said GC coach Bill Young, who was promoted from defensive coordinator to head coach in the spring. “I think we’re still in the process of developing our young guys.”
Starting quarterback Willie Logan and running back Jacob Wright, both new starters this season, were the Eagles’ best playmakers for the second straight week. Wright, a sophomore, ran 13 times for 98 yards with a touchdown; Logan only completed 7 of 18 passes for 59 yards but also ran eight times for 41 yards.
Wright, Wimer, Hartman and backup tailback Ryan Green-Ellis each scored for Bridgewater, showing off another week of diversity in BC’s offense. Last week against St. Vincent, three different players found the end zone.
Wimer, by the way, has two TDs already in 2012 – matching his career total coming into the season.
“[BC offensive coordinator J.D.] Shaw always told us he would incorporate the fullbacks a lot,” Wimer said. “In practice he has, and it’s shown in games. I think it’s really hard as a defense – instead of just sitting on one [running back], you have to watch out for two.”
BC’s defense didn’t have that issue. The Pride ran for just 66 yards on 35 carries, including 19 on 18 in the first half. Much of Greensboro’s 240 yards of offense came on a few deep passes to receivers in one-on-one coverage, and they didn’t do much damage on the scoreboard.
Early in the second half – right around the time it started raining horizontally – the Eagles stuffed the Pride after a 1st-and-10 at the 11-yard line.
At that point, “In the back of your mind, you felt like this is a game of how much,” Clark said, referring to the margin of victory.
The rout also allowed BC to get some other players significant game time – including senior backup quarterback Carlos Gonzalez.
Even in a close game, Clark had scripted that he would use Gonzalez, last year’s starter from Week 3 on, in a two-minute drill situation, since he is generally a stronger pocket passer than the dual-threat Logan. Gonzalez, a Florida International transfer, entered with 1:46 left in the first half.
But after completing his first pass, Gonzalez’s second from the Greensboro 31-yard line was intercepted as he tried to lead sophomore tight end Michael Colee near the end zone.
“When [Gonzalez] went out [after the interception], I said, ‘Look, we don’t have any timeouts, let’s play for a field goal,’” Clark said. “...I think sometimes you’ve got to be careful when you’re coming off the bench. You don’t want to get greedy.”
Still, Clark said he would consider going back to Gonzalez the next time a 2-minute drill scenario arises.
“It’s worth looking at, because [Gonzalez] is good at it,” Clark said. “If you just say, ‘Who’s got the better arm in the shotgun throwing the football?’ There’s no better arm than Carlos’ in Division III, let alone at Bridgewater. So I do think that’s open for debate.”
And as it turned out, Gonzalez’s pick set up Bridgewater’s nine-point spurt. Greensboro could have simply taken a knee and settled for a two-score halftime deficit; instead, the Pride worked out of the shotgun 96 yards from the end zone.
The second snap went over GC quarterback Ryan Throndset’s head and out of the end zone for a safety. Two plays later, Wimer had his touchdown – all but sealing BC’s undefeated record going into its bye week.
“Our guys didn’t play until the end of the [first-half] clock,” Young said.
NOTES: Wright’s 38-yard TD and Wimer’s 31-yard TD were both career-long runs. … Gonzalez, who also played much of the second half, finished 4-of-8 for 32 yards with the interception. … Freshman starting punter/kickoff man Tyler Dawson was injured in the third quarter, and was replaced by freshman Michael Cook for punting duties. Dawson, though, stayed in for BC’s final kickoff in the fourth.
Greensboro 0 7 0 0 — 7
Bridgewater 14 16 0 3 — 33
B – Green-Ellis 3 run. (Griggs kick) 7:34
B – Hartman 69 punt return. (Griggs kick) :00
G – West 1 run. (Bush kidk) 7:53
B – Wright 38 run. (Griggs kick) 6:37
B – TEAM safety :46
B – Wimer 31 run. (Griggs kick) :33
B – Griggs 36 field goal 10:10
First Downs 12 16
Rushes-Yards 35-66 40-189
Passing Yards 174 111
Total Yards 240 300
Comp-Att-Int 15-28-1 12-27-1
Punts 8-35.6 6-41.5
Fumbles-Lost 1-0 0-0
Penalties-Yards 3-15 2-10
Time of Poss. 30:12 29:48
RUSHING—Greensboro, West 23-69, Russell 1-3, Vernon 6-0, Team 1-(minus-1). Bridgewater, Wright 13-98, Logan 8-41, Wimer 2-32, Green-Ellis 5-9, Ayers 5-5, Matthews 2-4, Prokop 1-3, McColgan 1-1, Pham 1-1, Hartman 1-(minus-2), Team 1-(minus-3).
PASSING—Greensboro, Throndset 15-27-1-174, Foret 0-1-0-0. Bridgewater, Logan 7-18-0-59, Gonzalez 4-8-1-32, Prokop 1-1-0-20.
RECEIVING—Greensboro, Russell 8-99, Brown 2-16, Honeycutt 2-5, Thorpe 1-39, West 1-11, Eilum 1-4. Bridgewater, Moneymaker 3-30, Lezcano 3-28, Ayers 1-20, Colee 1-15, Lee 1-6, Baum 1-5, Wimer 1-5, Perry 1-2.