Wildcats fall 37-20 in season opener

Ronan Urvina, Staff Writer

The Wayne State College football team dropped its season opener Saturday afternoon with a 37-20 setback at Winona State University.

The football team played its first game of the 2019 season last Saturday in Winona, Minnesota, suffering a loss against the Winona State Warriors. Winona State held a 23-0 advantage after three quarters with WSC outscoring the Warriors 20-14 in the final line to make the final score 37-20.

The Warriors took a 23-0 lead late in the third quarter when their quarterback fired a 31-yard scoring strike to their wide receiver. Wayne State got on the board early in the fourth quarter when redshirt freshman quarterback Andy McCance found Taurean Grady on a four-yard scoring play to make the score 23-7.

“I think we did fairly decent for our first game, there were a lot of mistakes that we will be improving on in practice this week,” team captain Kolbie Foster said. “For the first game, we showed a lot of potential, the fourth quarter was when we started getting our feet underneath us.”

The team closed the scoring with a minute and a half left to play when WSC sophomore Mason Lee grabbed a nine-yard scoring pass from McCance to make the final score 37-20.

Wayne State managed to put a dent in the Winona State defense with a 10-play, 75-yard drive early in the fourth frame – all 20 of the Wildcats’ points were scored in the final quarter.

“The offense had multiple chances to score but was intercepted every time at the end, their big plays were from simple mistakes we made that we’ll fix this week,” Foster said.

“It took us a while to get comfortable and actually play football, and I felt like everyone was nervous about playing the first game of the season.” Defensive Back Kevin Ransom Jr said.
Ransom recorded a career-best 16 tackles.

Both of the players think there is still room for improvement, and that the team can show great potential this season.

“We have a whole week to prepare for the next game, we’re going to know what we have to do, and all we have to do is execute it,” Ransom said.

The Wildcats will host the Mustangs of Southwest Minnesota State during the annual Family Day contest with kickoff at 6 p.m. at Bob Cunningham Field.