Tuesday, October 18, 2011
WOU Sports Information
MONMOUTH -- Bryce Peila had three takeaways and Kenneth Haynes rushed for two touchdowns to lead Western Oregon to a 34-10 football win over Simon Fraser Saturday, Oct. 15, at McArthur Field.
The win by the Wolves sets up a homecoming battle with Great Northwest Athletic Conference-leader Humboldt State. The Wolves (4-1 GNAC, 4-3) and Lumberjacks (4-0 GNAC, 6-0) square off with first place on the line Saturday, Oct. 22, at 2 p.m. at McArthur Field.
Peila's takeaways helped lead a 21-point fourth quarter charge for the Wolves. He recovered a fumble and returned it 30 yards to set up Haynes' second touchdown of the half. He then intercepted a pass two plays later and returned it 48 yards for the score.
He was not done there, as he picked off SFU's Trey Wheeler again and took it back 42 yards to seal the fourth straight home win for Western Oregon dating back to last season.
"Peila's two picks were very crucial plays," Western Oregon coach Arne Ferguson said. "They really put the game away."
Trevor Gates recorded more than 100 yards receiving for the fourth straight game. He had nine catches for 135 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Evan Mozzochi was 17 of 23 for 216 yards. He also put WOU in front early in the first quarter with his fourth rushing touchdown of the season.
Mozzochi's scoring run was the only touchdown the Wolves would get in the first half. They would botch the snap on the extra point and found themselves down 7-6 at halftime.
"In the first half we didn't play as well as we would have liked, but we want to give the credit to Simon Fraser, too," Ferguson said. "We knew this game would be very physical and very close. We just had to keep on pushing tempo, which our offense did."
Haynes helped lead the second half charge by rushing for 60 of his 90 yards after the break and both touchdowns. His touchdown run from 3 yards out with 6:24 remaining in the third quarter capped a nine-play, 91-yard drive for the Wolves and gave them the lead for good at 13-7.
The Western Oregon defense held the conference's top-ranked rushing offense to just 75 yards on the ground, 146 below their season average.
"We felt we really contained their two really good running backs," Ferguson noted. "We were able to play 65 guys and really wear them down, which I think ended up being the key to the game."
Isaiah Buchanan led WOU with 10 tackles. Peila had nine stops and Benjamin Merrill added seven. The Wolves' first touchdown of the game was set up by Robert Young, who scooped up a botched exchange by SFU in the backfield and rumbled 56 yards to SFU's 3-yard line before he was tracked down from behind.