Baker football team wins fourth straight over William Jewell
Baker University’s football team has things rolling after a slow start to the 2009 campaign.
The Wildcats pulled away in the second half Saturday at Liston Stadium, rolling to a 26-6 victory over winless William Jewell. It was the fifth win in six games for Baker and the fourth in a row over the rival Cardinals.
“We’re excited that we’ve won five out of the last six,” coach Mike Grossner said. “We’ve played well the last six weeks, but we just couldn't stop Lindenwood. We’re playing at a pretty high level.
“We missed three field goals and dropped two touchdown passes Saturday, otherwise it was a little more lopsided,” he said. “They are not a bad football team, but they are a rival and they always play us tough. We’re just happy to get four in a row against William Jewell.”
Senior running back Richie Bryant combined for 228 yards total offense — 151 rushing and 77 receiving — and had a touchdown run and reception. With 3,186 career rushing yards, Bryant now ranks third all time at Baker behind Ed Lierz (4,492) and Kevin Alewine (3,704).
Ahead 12-6, Baker extended its lead to 19-6 in the third quarter when quarterback Mack Brown connected with Bryant on a 77-yard pass play. Brown finished with 130 yards to hike his career total to 7,910 yards, which ranks No. 1 all time at Baker.
Baker (5-3) scored its final touchdown when junior linebacker Matt Brock returned a fumble 92 yards for a score after junior defensive back Colton Miller sacked the Cardinal quarterback.
Senior defensive lineman Levi Calhoun led the Baker defense with 14 tackles and 1.5 sacks. Miller finished with 12 tackles and defensive end Andrew Patch had eight tackles, including three for losses.
“Defensively, we took the ball away and scored a touchdown,” Grossner said. “We are playing solid and not allowing teams in the end zone.”
The Wildcats will play Saturday at Evangel (2-6) in Springfield, Mo. Kickoff is 1:30 p.m. Baker will close the season the following weekend against Central Methodist. Kickoff is 1 p.m. Nov. 14 at Liston Stadium.
“I think there is a slim shot we could slip into the playoffs, but a lot of things need to happen ahead of us,” Grossner said. “We just need to finish things on our end as well. If we don’t make it, we know where we slipped up. I like the way we are playing right now.”
The Wildcats are one victory shy from posting its third consecutive winning season for the first time since 1992-94.
Baker University spokesperson Steve Rottinghaus contributed to this story.