HIRAM – College of Wooster football records tend to drop when the Fighting Scots visit Hiram College, and that trend continued in the Black & Gold’s 49-21 victory Saturday afternoon at Charles A. Henry Malmisur Stadium field.
Senior quarterback Mateo Renteria was at the center of Saturday’s record-breaking performance. He completed 27 of 43 passes for 396 yards and three touchdowns. The fifth-year starter passed Wooster alum Gary Muntean (2-0, 1-0 North Coast Athletic Conference) for the most career passing yards in program history, and this counter reached 8,491 at the end of the day. Renteria tied Muntean for the program record with 65 career touchdowns. Fittingly, the scoring shot went to senior tight end Cole Hissong. Wooster’s D3football.com Preseason All-American extended for the pylon after securing the hold near the 3-yard line, and that extra effort made it 48-21 with 10:29 remaining in the game.
Senior Andrew Yanssens was involved from the start of the offense, catching an 8-yard touchdown pass just over three minutes into the game. Wooster was back in business moments later, as Hiram missed the kickoff return, putting the Scots on the Terriers’ 19-yard line (0-2, 0-1 NCAC) at 11:40. Yanssens surged down the middle to 2 yards, as Wooster doubled their lead to 14-0 at 9:32 of the first period.
Hiram tied the game at 21 on Malcolm Rogers’ third-quarter 69-yard touchdown down the left sideline, but it was all Wooster from there, with the Scots closing the game with 28 unanswered points. The first six of those came on Yanssens’ second touchdown of the game, and the senior running back added a third from one yard with 1:11 left in the third quarter. Between touchdown passes from Yanssens, Renteria connected with freshman EJ Jackson on a 31-yard touchdown drive into a tight window, for which the Scots dove in the end zone.
Hiram’s offensive line and quarterback Xavier Reyero struggled to contain Wooster’s pass rush all afternoon. Senior defensive lineman Quincy Taylor beat Reyero on the sidelines for Wooster’s first sack of the game in the first quarter, and on the next drive, a second-and-4 play from Hiram backfired, courtesy of junior linebacker Kobe Nadu, who crossed the line. unblocked. Reyero suffered the same fate on third down, with junior defensive back Alex White entering the backfield for a 10-yard backhand.
Senior defensive lineman Brandon Holt jumped on the sack bandwagon in the second quarter and Nadu knocked down Reyero in the third quarter for his second sack of the day. Freshmen Robert Mays III and Q Renteria and senior Harvey Briscoe knocked Hiram back 16 yards in the final three of the match, a streak in which Wooster recorded three straight sacks, giving him eight for the daytime.
Hissong amassed 140 yards on eight receptions, one of which was a 10-yard touchdown catch. Sophomore Brazos Gadler passed for 100 yards that day, turning seven receptions into 135 yards, with 48 of the strikes after the catch.
Senior defensive back Matt Ulishney took the honors in tackles at 12, and sophomore defensive back Jon Banal finished with six tackles and one interception.
Reyero completed 18 of 29 passes for 173 yards and a touchdown. Rogers found success on the ground with 160 yards on 15 carries. Moe Yarbrough was the top receiving target at 82 yards on seven catches.
Dylan Baliker had 11 tackles for Hiram. Both Gregory Wilson Jr. and Tovanta Revis had interceptions.
Wooster beat Hiram 522-312, was on offense for almost 35:00 of the game and was 8 of 16 on third down. Hiram was just 4 of 13 on third down.
Next, Wooster hosts Wabash College (1-1, 0-0 NCAC) in their home opener. Kick-off from John P. Papp Stadium is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Saturday, September 17, and the match is part of the College’s Black & Gold weekend.