No. 3 UW-Whitewater wins season opener 51-3 over TCNJ
The No. 3 ranked University of Wisconsin-Whitewater football team won its 25th consecutive game at Perkins Stadium to open the 2016 season Saturday, defeating The College of New Jersey 51-3 in a non-conference affair.
The Warhawks (1-0 overall) piled up 481 yards of total offense, including 357 in the first half, and held the Lions to 186 yards and a 2.6-yards-per-play clip.
Making his UW-Whitewater debut, sophomore running back Drew Patterson (Sussex, Wis./Hamilton) totaled eight carries for 89 yards and three touchdowns, all in the first half.
Sophomore quarterback Cole Wilber (Dana Point, Calif./Dana Hills) led the passing attack, completing 14-of-18 passes for 191 yards and two scores in his first career start. Sophomore wide receiver Mitchell Dess (South Milwaukee, Wis./South Milwaukee) tallied six receptions for 79 yards.
Senior defensive lineman Brandon Tamsett (Waterford/Waterford-Union), sophomore defensive lineman David O'Gorman (Watertown, Wis./Watertown) and sophomore linebacker Bryce Leszczynski(Milwaukee, Wis./Pius XI) posted five tackles apiece to lead the Warhawks' balanced defense, which recorded eight tackles for a loss.
UW-Whitewater opened the contest with an eight-play, 70-yard drive capped by a six-yard touchdown run by sophomore running back Jarrod Ware (Bradley, Ill./Bradley-Bourbonnais) with 13:05 left in the first quarter.
After the Warhawks forced TCNJ (0-1) to punt, they converted on a fourth-and-one from the Lions' 28-yard line and, four plays later, Patterson plunged in from three yards out to make it 14-0 with 6:15 on the clock.
Following a field goal by TCNJ early in the second quarter, UW-Whitewater found the end zone four times in the frame.
Patterson scored for the second time in the game from one yard out before sophomore wide receiver Canton Larson (Oconomowoc, Wis./Oconomowoc) caught an 18-yard touchdown from Wilber with 8:31 to play.
Patterson broke through the line and ran untouched to the end zone from 34 yards out with 4:48 remaining, and junior tight end Tony Gumina (Sussex, Wis./Hamilton) capped the half with a 19-yard touchdown catch from Wilber to give the Warhawks a 41-3 advantage.
Junior Ben Franzen (Hampshire, Ill./Hampshire) converted a career-long 44-yard field goal four minutes into the third quarter, and freshman wide receiver Josh Ringelberg (Greendale, Wis./Greendale) hauled in an 11-yard touchdown early in the fourth from sophomore quarterback Ryan Curran (Sun Prairie, Wis./Sun Prairie).
Saturday's victory was the 13th straight season-opening victory for UW-Whitewater.
The Warhawks continue non-conference play next Saturday against Belhaven (Miss.). Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. at Perkins Stadium.