Story and photo courtesy of Illinois Wesleyan Athletics
CHICAGO, Ill. - For the second straight year, the Illinois Wesleyan football team is 5-0 overall and 2-0 in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin after a 44-7 win at North Park in Chicago on Saturday, October 6.
The Titans amassed 471 yards of total offense while limiting the Vikings (1-4 overall, 0-2 CCIW) to 151 yards and the lone North Park score came on a fumble recovery return for a TD. Junior quarterback Rob Gallik completed 24 of 29 passes for 319 yards and three touchdowns. The .828 completion percentage is second best in an IWU single game for 10 or more attempts, behind only .871 by Lon Erickson against Millikin in 1996, when he was 27 of 31.
Alex Garvey had nine catches for 127 yards and two TDs to lead IWU and junior T.J. Stinde had 45 total rushing yards with a TD on 13 attempts.
North Park opened the scoring when Doug Ivy recovered a fumble by Gallik and returned it 86 yards for a touchdown. Tony Kebede added the extra point kick to give the Vikings a 7-0 lead with 6:20 left in the first quarter.
The Titans scored with 3:00 to play in the first when Garvey caught a 30-yard TD pass from Gallik and freshman Michael Kelley kicked the extra point to tie the game at 7-7.
Gallik connected with junior Sean Conley for an 8-yard TD pass with 11:55 left in the half and Kelley's kick made it 14-7 IWU.
Garvey caught his second scoring pass from Gallik with 2:55 to play in the half and IWU carried a 21-7 lead into the locker room at intermission.
Gallik capped an 88-yard, 10-play drive that consumed 5:33 with a 15-yard run for a score with 5:33 to play in the third quarter and IWU held a 28-7 edge. A seven-play 75 yard drive was ended with 1 second to play in the third quarter with a 3-yard TD run by Stinde and the extra point kick gave the Titans a 35-7 lead.
The Titans struck back defensively on the next Viking possession when Tim Hollowed intercepted a pass at the North Park 31. A personal foul advanced the ball to the 16 and Brett Robinson ran the ball in to stake IWU to a convincing 41-7 lead.
Kelley's 22 yard field goal with 8:53 left put the finishing touches on the scoring.
Senior linebacker Mike Kraft led IWU with 4.5 total tackles and Kyle Pfister had four tackles with a 33-yard interception return.
Illinois Wesleyan will host Carthage at 1:30 p.m. next Saturday (Oct. 13) for the annual IWU Homecoming game.