Blue Jays Lose Tough Fought Game On Homecoming

Photo by Caleb Maassen.
Photo by Caleb Maassen.

Fulton, MO 10/1/2022- The Westminster College football team returned to Fulton on Saturday for homecoming after being on the road the last two weeks. The Blue Jays were coming off a tough non-conference schedule and welcomed in the Minnesota-Morris Cougars to the friendly confines of Blue Jay Stadium for the first UMAC game of the season.

Things were looking up for the Jays to start the game. They would win the toss and get the ball first. After a 21-yard return by freshman Shelby Pittsenbarger (Warrensburg, MO / Warrensburg) the Blue Jay offense would get started on their 28-yard line. They would march down to the Cougars' 13-yard line but would be denied after going for it on fourth down.  The drive would eat up most of the first quarter and the game would be tied 0-0 at the end of the first quarter of play.

The Cougar offense would score fourteen points in the second quarter. The Blue Jays would respond with a 1-yard touchdown run by sophomore running back Dante Billups (Mexico, MO / Mexico) with 1:01 left in the 1st half. The Blue Jays would score a two-point conversion on a fake extra point. Pittsenbarger would run untouched to the right side to make the score 14-8 and give the Blue Jays some momentum heading into halftime.

Minnesota-Morris got the ball to start the third quarter and would return the opening kickoff forty-eight yards to the Westminster 36-yard line. Seven plays later the Cougars would find the end zone again to extend their lead 21-8. They would score with 6:05 left to play in the game and defeat the Blue Jays 28-8.

The defense stood tall most of the game with defensive lineman Rothman Harris III (Farmington, MO / Farmington) recording eight total tackles and one sack for a 6-yard loss. Meanwhile, Robert Anthony (Herrin, IL / Herrin) notched the team's only interception, returning it for 46 yards; he also made eight tackles.

The offense was led by Billups who had 20 carries for 83 yards and a touchdown. Jordan Kern (St. Louis, MO / Parkway North) had 17 carries for 72 yards. The two running backs averaged 4.2 yards per carry behind their big offensive line.

The Cougars improve to 2-3 on the season and are now 1-0 in the UMAC. The Blue Jays fall to 0-5 on the season and 0-1 in the UMAC.

The Blue Jays will look to bounce back next week when they hit the road again to take on the Panthers of Greenville University. Kick-off is set for 1:00 PM