Time of Poss.
Olivet, Mich. - The Wheaton football team, ranked 22nd in this week's D3football.com Top 25, concluded the non-conference portion of the schedule with a 61-14 victory at Olivet College on Saturday night. Wheaton will open conference play in front of a homecoming crowd at McCully Stadium next Saturday at 1 PM against Illinois Wesleyan.
Wheaton scored in less than three minutes of the opening kickoff, as quarterback Garrett Meador ran for a one-yard touchdown run to cap an opening drive of six plays and 58 yards. Meador's touchdown with 12:22 left in the first quarter gave the Thunder a 7-0 lead, en route to 26 first-quarter points. Meador connected with senior receiver on a 42-yard touchdown pass with 9:32 left in the quarter. The Wheaton defense also helped put the 'Orange and Blue' on the scoreboard with a safety by senior defensive lineman Charley Mitchell and senior linebacker Cory Hart recovered a fumble and returned it 10 yards for a touchdown. Junior kicker Scott Roche capped Wheaton's first-quarter scoring with a 28-yard field with 3:37 left in the opening quarter to account for the 26-0 lead at the conclusion of the quarter.
Wheaton safety Ryan Foster intercepted a pass on Olivet's opening drive of the second half and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown to extend Wheaton's lead to 47-0 with 12:39 left in the third quarter. Olivet put its first points on the board with touchdown with 8:15 left in the third quarter and Wheaton countered with a two-yard touchdown pass from Roberts to Justin Zeller with 5:42 remaining in the third quarter to extend its lead to 54-7. Olivet recorded a 58-yard touchdown pass with 4:30 remaining in the third quarter and Wheaton capped off the game's scoring on a five-yard touchdown run by freshman Justin Swider with 2:11 remaining in the game to account for the final score of 61-14.
Wheaton amassed 528 yards of total offense, passing for 256 yards and rushing for 272. Olivet had 238 total yards, passing for 230 yards, with just eight rushing yards.
Junior cornerback Micah Markley led the Thunder defense with seven total tackles and two interceptions. Sam VanHeest made five tackles, including two for lost yardage (-12 yards). Ben Johnson and Hart each registered two tackles for lost yardage. Foster, Bryan McBroom and Tyler Langs each intercepted a pass.