Football Falls to #17 Wingate on Late FG


SALISBURY, N.C. -- Wingate drove 76 yards in the final seven minutes to set up McLean Robertson’s game-winning 34-yard field goal with 38 seconds remaining to lift the 17th-ranked Bulldogs to a 13-10 win over host Catawba in South Atlantic Conference football action on Saturday night at Shuford Stadium and Kirkland Field. Wingate improves to 4-0 and 2-0 in the SAC, while the Catawba Indians fall to 1-3 and 0-1.

Both teams scored touchdowns on their initial drives. The Bulldogs went to the ground on an 11-play, 75-yard drive that was capped on a Domineke McNeill eight-yard run. McNeill accounted for 61 yards on the drive.

Catawba answered with an eight-play, 75-yard drive that included a pair of big plays from Kendall Davis. The first was a 28-yard run to the Wingate 28 then he tossed a 25-yard scoring pass to Gavin Rose to tie the game.

The defenses would settle in and only field goals were attempted the rest of the way. Wingate took a 10-7 edge on a 20-yard field goal from Robertson early in the second quarter and took that edge to the break. The Indians missed on a 38-yard field goal in the quarter and Wingate failed from 55 yards away.

Each team would fail to convert field goals early in the second half before Catawba pulled even on a 20-yard field goal from Clayton Crile with 3:34 to go in the third quarter. Wingate appeared poised to regain the lead early in the final quarter, but Adam Rowson caused a fumble in the red zone to end the threat.

Wingate stopped the Indians just inside Bulldog territory and were pinned by a Crile punt at their own seven-yard-line. The Bulldogs would march to the Catawba 17 before kicking the winning points. A sack by Cal Hanford derailed Catawba’s last ditch chance in the final 20 seconds.

Wingate run for 232 yards with McNeill rushing for 112 yards and Kalen Clark another 100. Shaw Crocker completed 17-of-28 passes for 212 yards with Raquan Simmons making eight grabs for 68 yards. The Bulldogs converted on 13 of 18 third-down opportunities in the game.

Demonte Good led Catawba on the ground with 59 yards. Davis added 40 yards rushing, while completing 12-of-21 passes for 168 yards. Rose caught four passes for 91 yards. Brenden Westbrook was in on 16 tackles for the Indians. Cris Page made 11 stops and broke up four passes.

Catawba travels to Limestone next Saturday for a 1 p.m. kickoff with the Saints.

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