BUCKHANNON – The West Virginia Wesleyan football team couldn’t overcome a 13-point first-quarter deficit here Saturday afternoon against the Glenville State Pioneers in a Mountain East Conference clash at Cebe Ross Field in a 36-33 setback.
The contest, the final regular season home game for Wesleyan, was tabbed as Senior Day with 15 seniors playing their final game at Cebe Ross Field.
Wesleyan was their own worst enemy in the first-quarter as an interception led to a pick-six 33-yard touchdown return by Pioneer Dom Cizauskas.
That was sandwiched between two Justin Watts field goals to give the Pioneers their 13-0 lead.
Wesleyan put themselves on the scoreboard on the fourth play of the second quarter when Luke Casey completed a six-yard touchdown strike to Kenny Lewis Jr.
Gunnar Christianson’s point-after kick was good as Wesleyan cut the lead to 13-7 with two minutes ticked off the second-quarter clock.
Glenville State upped their lead to 20-7 with 4:06 left in the second quarter on a Jaylen McNair 12-yard pass to Carrington Anderson.
Wesleyan marched the ball right back down the field on an 11-play, 75-yard possession that ended on a Shaq Freeman-Parks three-yard touchdown run.
Christianson was good on his kick attempt as the ‘Cats made it a 20-14 game.
Two plays later though, Glenville State was the in end zone again as McNair completed a 59-yard scoring strike to Javon Butler with just 15 seconds left in the second quarter.
The two-point conversion was no good, but Glenville State led 26-14 at the break.
Wesleyan kept the game tight when Jujuan Linzy hauled in a 28-yard scoring strike from Matt Vinson with 4:10 remaining in the third quarter.
The two-point conversion failed, but Wesleyan closed the deficit to 26-20.
Watts made his third field goal of the game, this one from 23 yards out as that upped the Pioneer lead to 29-20 with 1:05 left in the third quarter.
Trey Lee intercepted a McNair pass at the Pioneer six-yard line and returned it for the score to cut Glenville State’s lead to 29-26 with 12:26 left in the contest.
The point-after kick was blocked as Wesleyan still trailed by three.
Glenville State chewed up nearly five minutes of clock on their next drive as they extended their lead on a Thomas Boles five-yard with 4:46 remaining in the game.
Watts kick was good as the Pioneers took a 36-26 lead.
Wesleyan went back to work and scored eight plays later when Freeman-Parks had his second rushing touchdown of the day, this one from a yard-out.
Christianson’s kick was true as the Bobcats trailed 36-33 with 1:50 left in the contest.
Wesleyan recovered the initial onside kick but they were flagged for being offsides.
On the retry, Trey Shuff pounced on the kick to secure the ball for Glenville State.
Wesleyan got the ball back with one second remaining at their own 13 and attempted several laterals after a 21-yard catch by Lewis Jr. but was tackled at the Wesleyan 32-yard line.
Glenville State outgained Wesleyan by a 392-322 margin.
Mario Pender led the Pioneer rushing attack with 78 yards on 22 carries.
McNair completed 16 of his 29 passes for 214 yards and two scores.
Butler was their top receiver with 11 catches for 177 yards and one score.
Vinson was the top ground-gainer for the ‘Cats with 26 yards on seven tries.
Vinson completed 19 of his 30 passes for 234 yards and one score.
Lewis Jr. hauled in a team-best 10 catches for 119 yards.
Glenville State improved to 5-5 overall and 5-4 in the MEC.
Wesleyan dropped to 1-9 overall and 1-8 in league play.
The Bobcats will close out their regular season Saturday when they visit West Virginia State for a 1 p.m. kick-off.
Glenville State 13 13 3 7 – 36
Wesleyan 0 14 6 13 – 33
Glenville State – Justin Watts, 31-yard field goal
Glenville State – Dom Cizauskas, 33-yard interception return (Watts kick)
Glenville State – Watts, 26-yard field goal
West Virginia Wesleyan – Kenny Lewis, 6-yard pass from Luke Casey (Gunnar Christianson kick)
Glenville State – Carrington Anderson, 12-yard pass from Jaylen McNair (Watts kick)
West Virginia Wesleyan – Shaq Freeman-Parks, 3-yard run (Christianson kick)
Glenville State – Javon Butler, 59-yard pass from McNair (pass failed)
West Virginia Wesleyan – Jujuan Linzy, 28-yard pass from Matt Vinson (pass failed)
Glenville State – Watts, 23-yard field goal
West Virginia Wesleyan – Trey Lee, 6-yard interception return (kick blocked)
Glenville State – Thomas Boles, 5-yard run (Watts kick)
West Virginia Wesleyan – Freeman-Parks, 1-yard run (Christianson kick)
First downs – Glenville State: 22 (12 rushing, 9 passing, 1 penalty); West Virginia Wesleyan: 16 (3 rushing, 11 passing, 2 penalty)
Total yards – Glenville State: 392; West Virginia Wesleyan: 322
Rushing yards – Glenville State: 178; West Virginia Wesleyan: 54
Passing yards – Glenville State: 214; West Virginia Wesleyan: 268
Passes – Glenville State: 16-29-1; West Virginia Wesleyan: 22-34-2
Penalties – Glenville State: 6-64; West Virginia Wesleyan: 9-62
Punts – Glenville State: 4-43.0; West Virginia Wesleyan: 5-32.6
Fumbles – Glenville State: 0; West Virginia Wesleyan: 0
Fumbles lost – Glenville State: 0; West Virginia Wesleyan: 0
Red Zone – Glenville State: 5-for-6; West Virginia Wesleyan: 3-for-3
Time of Possession: Glenville State: 36:00; West Virginia Wesleyan: 24:00
Glenville State – Mario Pender 22-78; Thomas Boles 13-62 (1 touchdown); J’Quan Anderson 4-29; Jaylen McNair 4-6; Javon Butler 1-3. Totals 44-178 (1 touchdown).
West Virginia Wesleyan – Matt Vinson 7-26; Lawrence Brown 7-17; Shaq Freeman-Parks 7-6 (2 touchdowns); Jujuan Linzy 1-4; Luke Casey 1-1. Totals 23-54 (2 touchdowns).
Glenville State – McNair 16-for-29 for 214 yards, 2 touchdowns, 1 interception.
West Virginia Wesleyan – Vinson 19-for-30 for 234 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions; Casey 3-for-4 for 34 yards, 1 touchdown, 0 interceptions. Totals 22-for-34 for 268 yards, 2 touchdowns, 2 interceptions.
Glenville State – Butler 11-177 (1 touchdown); Carrington Anderson 3-28 (1 touchdown); Trey Shuff 1-8; Pender 1-1. Totals 16-214 (2 touchdowns).
West Virginia Wesleyan – Kenny Lewis Jr. 10-119 (1 touchdown); Jujuan Linzy 3-48 (1 touchdown); Sterling Dewdney 2-32; Derek Drapen 2-29; Freeman-Parks 3-19; Brown 1-13; Jonah Wellman 1-8. Totals 22-268 (2 touchdowns).