Editor’s Note: The following was provided by UW-Whitewater.
The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater football team, ranked fourth in the latest D3football.com poll, capped their non-conference slate with a perfect 3-0 record after defeating Mary Hardin-Baylor 17-14 on the road Saturday. The Warhawks had to overcome a lengthy, three-hour delay for the kickoff due to weather.
The Warhawks never trailed in the contest and sealed the win on Thomas Wojnowski’s late interception – his second game-sealing pick this season.
UWW set the tone on their first drive of the game. Christian Crump returned the opening kick 17 yards and the Warhawks proceeded to march 73 yards in nine plays for the first score of the contest. Big plays in the drive included a 17-yard Jason Ceniti to Tommy Coates connection, a 20-yard Ceniti to Nolan Hawk completion and a 16-yard scamper from Tamir Thomas. Thomas hit paydirt to cap the drive punching it in from two yards out for the touchdown. Jeff Isotalo-McGuire made it 7-0 Warhawks with the kick.
That score held until early in the second when the Cru capped an 11-play, 58-yard drive with a quarterback sneak up the middle to knot the game 7-7.
UW-Whitewater responded in the ensuing drive. Tyler Vasey’s 41-yard kick return gave the Warhawks a short field to work with starting the drive near midfield. Alijah Maher-Parr was tapped for the majority of carries in the drive, rushing off the left side of the line for 12-yards and a first down on the second play. A few plays later, Ceniti found Steven Hein for 15-yards down the middle to the UMHB 27 for another new set of downs. Drake Martin hauled in a 10-yard catch to put UWW on the 17 and five plays later Thomas would cross the goal line again for his second touchdown of the day. The kick made it 14-7 UW-Whitewater and the teams would take that score into halftime.
On the other side of the break, UMHB tied the game at 14 capping a drive with a 33-yard touchdown strike.
Once again, UWW had the answer, this time using Isotalo-McGuire’s boot to add to their total as he hit from 46 yards out to give UWW a 17-14 lead.
The rest of the half saw two UMHB drives ended on fumbles recovered by the Warhawks, a punt and finally Wojnowski’s interception with less than 30 seconds remaining.
Ceniti was 11-18 for 98 yards in the game. His favorite target was Coates with three catches in the game. UWW stayed true to their tradition of “Pounding the Rock” registering the majority of yardage on the ground. Thomas posted 11 yards with the pair of touchdowns while Maher Parr added 44 yards rushing.
Defensively, Joey Antonietti led the Warhawks with 13 tackles including two for a loss. Matt Burba registered eight including two for a loss and a sack that pushed the Cru back 13 yards. Roy Panthier forced one of the fumbles and registered the recovery.
The Warhawks will enjoy a well-deserved week off before returning to the gridiron for Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play. The first league game is slated for September 30 at UW-Oshkosh.