Men’s football drops season opener to No. 3 Western

Photo by Will Huang

Photo by Will Huang

The Wilfrid Laurier men’s football team dropped a rough match against the No. 3 nationally ranked Western Mustangs Saturday night, losing 59-9.

“[It was a] really tough game, wasn’t pretty,” head coach Michael Faulds said. “We’ve got to do a better job protecting the football and we gave away too many penalties.”

“Anytime you face a good quality team like Western, you can’t give them extra chances and we did a lot of that tonight.”

The Laurier defence held the surging Mustang offence to just 14 points in the first quarter, with Western’s running game being limited.

However injuries and penalties were the Hawks’ faults every time the offence went to work.

The Mustangs took control in the second quarter, leading 38-0 at the half.

Kicker Nathan Mesher contributed the lone scoring Laurier had on the evening, going 3-for-3 on his field goal attempts to get the Hawks on the board.

Fifth-year running back Dillon Campbell used multiple tactics to carry the ball, gaining 125 all-purpose yards, with 51 receiving and 74 rushing.

Western would continue to dominate the Hawks throughout the match, taking points however they can to bury the Hawks’ defence. The Mustangs would tack on 21 more points to finish the game, replacing quarterback Will Finch with backup Stevenson Bone midway through the third quarter.

Finch ended the game 25-for-33 for 385 yards and three touchdowns. His counterpart, Laurier’s James Fracas, finished 22-for-32 for 283 yards.

Despite the blowout loss, Faulds took away a few positives from the game.

“I guess one positive would be Nathan Mesher and his field goal kicking, and I thought our defence battled really strong early on. We gave them 14 points from our offence. Considering the offensive juggernaut that Western is, we kind of held them intact for the first half.”

Laurier drops to 1-2 to begin the season. Next, the Hawks will be focused on getting healthy and use their bye week to heal up as they rest up for Homecoming when they host the Windsor Lancers. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. on Sept. 26 at University Stadium.

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