Time of Poss.
Wheaton, Ill. – The Wheaton Thunder (7-2, 5-2 CCIW) football team defeated Augustana 53-10 on Saturday at McCully Stadium in the home finale for the 2017 Thunder schedule. Wheaton concludes the regular season next Saturday at Carroll University in a 1:00 p.m. kickoff.
Wheaton gained a season-high 636 yards of offense, passing for 314 yards with 322 rushing yards. Augustana ran for 146 yards and threw for 75 yards to total 221 yards of offense.
Thunder senior running back Sola Olateju carried the ball 14 times for 194 yards, with two touchdown runs. He also caught three passes for 88 yards with a touchdown catch. Olateju is now just 42 yards shy of Garrett Granberg's 2,963 career rushing yards for second place on Wheaton's all-time rushing list. TJ Williams tallied 77 rushing yards with a touchdown run and Jerome Gray ran for 35 yards with a run into the end zone.
Thunder receiver Phillip Nichols caught six passes for 66 yards. Chase White collected four receptions for 58 yards and Zach Lindquist tallied four catches for 52 yards.
Jesse Furrow completed 16 of his 26 passing attempts for 239 yards with two touchdown tosses. Curtis McWilliams was 4-for-8 passing with 42 yards and Dave Beamer had a 4-for-6 passing effort for 25 yards.
Eric Stevenson led the Thunder defense with nine total tackles, including 1-1/2 tackles for loss (-3 yards). Austin Hoover totaled six tackles with a tackle for lost yardage (-3 yards). Patrick O'Connell (PICTURED RIGHT) registered six tackles, including four tackles for loss (-22), with 1-1/2 sacks (-17 yards). Luke Sahly contributed five total tackles with a pass breakup.
Antonio Cannon led the Augustana rushing attack with 60 rushing yards. Danny Giffels led the Augustana defense with 10 tackles. John Kappel recorded seven total tackles for the Vikings.
The Vikings scored the first points of the game with a 41-yard field that gave Augustana a 3-0 lead with 13:33 remaining in the first quarter. Wheaton responded on the first play of the ensuing drive with a 72-yard touchdown run by TJ Williams. Wheaton was unable to convert the PAT attempt that followed Williams' touchdown as the Thunder led 6-3 with 13:16 remaining in the opening quarter. Furrow connected with Tyler Pace on a seven-yard touchdown pass to increase Wheaton's lead to 13-3 with 7:49 remaining in the first quarter.
Thunder kicker Stefan Knoerr booted a 22-yard field with 4:10 remaining in the first half to extend the hosts' lead to 16-3. Olateju connected with Jesse Furrow on a 67-yard touchdown pass to give the Thunder a 23-3 lead with 1:06 left in the first half. Knoerr booted a 46-yard field as time expired to end the first half with Wheaton leading 26-3.
Olateju broke free for a 76-yard touchdown run with 12:51 remaining in the third quarter that increased Wheaton's lead to 33-3. Zach Lindquist's four-yard touchdown run with 7:27 remaining in the third quarter gave Wheaton a 40-3 lead. Olateju's third touchdown of the day was a 12-yard touchdown with 5:30 remaining in the third quarter for a 46-3 Thunder lead. Senior Jerome Grey reached the end zone on an eight-yard touchdown run for a 53-3 Thunder advantage with 1:20 remaining in the third quarter.
Augustana's Alek Jacobs scored on a 13-yard touchdown run with 6:34 left in the fourth quarter to account for the 53-10 final score.