By Trent Nicholson, Contributing Writer
The West Liberty Hilltoppers fall to 1-1 on the season with a 50-27 loss to McKendree University.
West Liberty had a rough day on offense and defense as McKendree absolutely pummels the Toppers. The Hilltopper offense had 461 yards, but just couldn’t get the job done. West Liberty’s defense allowed 50 points on 592 total yards of Bearcat offense.
West Liberty quarterback Dakota Conwell left the game early due to injury. There is still no word on what happened. He ended his day going 4 for 13 with just 30 yards and one interception. West Liberty sent in backup quarterback Dylan LaGarde, who went 20 of 35 for 209 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions. Ian Kelly and Micah Lowe were the two main targets for LaGarde.
Kelly had seven receptions for 66 yards and two touchdowns, while Micah Lowe caught six passes for 51 yards. The running game for West Liberty was pretty solid today as five different running backs touched the ball in today’s game. Sophomore Braxton Gamble led the led the way with 5 carries for 76 yards and one touchdown. Gamble averaged 15.2 yards per carry.
The West Liberty defense did not execute today, therefore having 50 points scored against them. The top three players on defense today were Marcus Schumacher, Garrett Vulcano, and Solomon Dixon. Schumacher and Vulcano both combined for 11 total tackles, and Dixon had ten total tackles.
The McKendree offense had West Liberty’s number today. Bearcat quarterback Isaac Fisher went 27 of 37 for 353 yards and six touchdown passes. He also led the team in rushing yards carrying the ball 17 times for 130 yards. Treye Williams also carried the ball 17 times and rushed for 72 yards with one touchdown. Tyler Brewer and Dustin Walls were the two primary receivers for the Bearcats today. Brewer caught four passes for 120 yards and one touchdown, while Walls had six catches for 93 yards and two touchdowns.
Sean Dowling also caught two touchdown passes in today’s contest. Only one name stands out for the Bearcat defense today and his name is A.J. Wentland. He accounted for 22 total tackles in today’s game. On the three interceptions were Nate Powell, Jabaree Winston, and Cruz Navarro.
West Liberty will be playing at Fairmont State next Thursday night; kick-off is set for 7 P.M.