Kansas Wesleyan Flag Football closed out its regular season on Sunday facing the Saint Mary Spires, and came away with a dominating win, topping the Spires 57-0 at Gene Bissell Field at JRI Stadium at the Graves Family Sports Complex.
Sunday’s 57 points was the second highest point total of the season for the Coyotes, second to when KWU scored 60 on Bethel on March 8 in just under three full quarters of action.
The Coyotes outscored the Spires 108-0 in their two meetings on the season.
Wesleyan’s 393 yards of total offense in the game is also a new season high, as the Coyotes finished with 280 yards passing and 119 rushing.
The game was all Coyotes from the opening drive. Wesleyan only needed three plays and 80 seconds to find the endzone on the first drive. A 28-yard run started by Brianna Hernandez-Silva (SR/Las Vegas, Nev.) and finished by Kendra Velasquez-Munro (SO/Las Vegas, Nev.) got the drive started, and two plays later Hernandez-Silva found Angel Roman (SO/Jacksonville, Fla.) from 27 yards out for the score to give the Coyotes the lead.
After a stalled Saint Mary drive and punt, the Coyotes got right back to work. This time the Coyotes used a little more clock, needing nine plays and just over five minutes to score again, as Hernandez-Silva found Jazmine wide open in the middle of the endzone for the score marking it 14-0 with 1:52 left in the quarter.
The Coyote special teams provided the next bit of excitement as KWU’s defense forced a Saint Mary punt, that Ciaran DeCuir (SO/Las Vegas, Nev.) returned 60 yards down the sideline for the score with 11:14 left in the second quarter making it 21-0 after Hernandez-Silva found Tori Wlodarczyk (FR/Las Vegas, Nev.) for the 1-point PAT.
Angel Roman picked off a pass on Saint Mary’s next drive setting up a short field for the Coyotes at the USM 28 and three plays later the Coyotes were in the end zone again as Hernandez-Silva rushed for seven yards then lateraled to DeCuir to finish it off.
Wesleyan’s next drive only took two plays to score again, a third time in less than six minutes in the second quarter. Hernandez-Silva rushed for 20 yards, then found Angel Almaraz (FR/Las Vegas, Nev.) on a 10-yard pass to make it 35-0 with 6:21 to go in the half.
The Coyotes led 35-0 at half time.
KWU’s defense came up big on the Saint Mary drive to start the second half as Alexis Jimenez (SO/Miami, Fla.) nearly had an interception deflecting a USM pass, which would have been her second pick of the day.
Wesleyan’s first drive of the second half needed one play as Hernandez-Silva found Whitfield again, with no one within five yards of her for the score from 30 yards out.
Saint Mary drove to the KWU 23 on its next drive but stalled there, and the Coyotes quickly went the other direction. It only took three plays for the Coyotes to score again, as Hernandez-Silva found DeCuir open over the middle, who broke free from a Saint Mary defender, and raced to the endzone for the score from 47 yards making it 48-0 Coyotes.
Right before the end of the third, the Coyotes had a nifty play that turned into a big gainer. Quarterback Emilee Buhl (SO/Willis, Texas) looked to find Wlodarczyk over the middle, but the ball went through her hands right to Whitfield who raced down the sideline to the USM 10.
KWU got two points on a safety in the fourth. KWU’s drive stalled at the USM 1, and after a no gain play, Ansdiane Rabano (FR/Jersey City, N.J.) sacked USM quarterback Sable Barnes in the endzone for a safety with 10:44 left in the game.
The Coyotes got one more score in the game. The Coyotes took over at their own 27 and marched down the field to the USM 23. It appeared that the Coyotes had thrown an interception that was returned for a touchdown, but a roughing the passer penalty negated the play and gave the Coyotes a first and goal at the USM 13. On the next play, Buhl found Whitfield for a score and the PAT to Nickayla Howard (SO/Las Vegas, Nev.) was good making it 57-0 with 4:03 left.
Hernandez-Silva led the Coyotes going 11 of 15 passing for 186 yards and five touchdowns, and Buhl was 9 of 16 for 94 yards and a score. Hernandez-Silva added 59 yards rushing on six carries and Velasquez-Munro added three carries for 54 yards.
Whitfield just missed a 100-yard receiving day with six catches for 99 yards and three scores. Velasquez-Munro had three catches for 26 yards and Alamaraz had three grabs for 25 and a score. Nine difference players had a pass reception.
Alexa Mansur (SO/Henderson, Nev.) led the Coyotes with seven flag pulls and a pass breakup on defense. Jimenez was one of three Coyotes to have four flag pulls and added an interception. Rabano had two sacks and Howard had one and Leila Casillan (FR/Las Vegas, Nev.) had one as well.
The Coyotes wrap the regular season with a school record 12th win improving to 12-3 overall and finish the KCAC schedule at 8-2.
The Coyotes will be the No. 2 seed in the KCAC tournament that starts Friday at the brand new Paragon Star Sports Complex in Lee’s Summit, Mo. KWU will play at 6 p.m. Friday against the winner between No. 3 seed Midland and the No. 6 seed, either Bethel or Saint Mary, who both went 1-9 in the KCAC and split their regular season meetings.
The KCAC Championship game is set for 3 p.m. at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday.