WINFIELD — There wasn’t much separation between McPherson College’s Bulldogs and Southwestern in the final stats on Saturday, but there sure was in the final score.
Southwestern totaled 429 yards to 395 for the Bulldogs, but the Moundbuilders avenged last year’s loss with a 45-17 victory, dropping Mac to 0-2 in the KCAC and 1-2 overall.
It was a major step back for the Bulldogs, who were hoping to use this game as a springboard for a turnaround to their season since they have winless Bethel coming to town on Saturday. The Bulldogs have now given up 102 points in their first two conference games.
Just as last week, the Bulldogs grabbed a 7-0 lead on a 20-yard TD pass from Ed Crouch to Jackson Goodmiller.
After Southwestern scored a touchdown and field goal to take a 10-7 lead, Mac tied it on freshman kicker Jack Reid’s 35-yard field goal.
Southwestern, however, scored a pair of touchdowns less than 3 minutes apart before the end of the first half to lead 24-10 and then made it 31-10 before the end of the third quarter.
The only other other score for the Bulldogs was an 11-yard run by Crouch, which capped a 75-yard drive.
Southwestern flummoxed the Bulldogs by dropping eight defenders in coverage, which allowed freshman Mac running back Corey Davis to run for 87 yards on 16 carries, while Crouch added 75 on 13 tries. Armond McCray also chipped in with 43 as the Bulldogs had 204 as a team.
But Crouch threw for only 191 after piercing Bethany for 425 last week. Goodmiller and Eman McNeil both had five grabs.
Thomas Lanktree (14 tackles), Ashton Serpas (12) and Tanner Williams (10) were all busy on the defensive side for the Bulldogs.
Southwestern’s Christian Gordon threw for 254 yards, while Silas Jefferson scored three rushing touchdowns for the Builders. Keyshawn Wyatt had 75 yards rushing and a pair of scores.
Mac’s game with Bethel on Saturday at McPherson Stadium has a 7 p.m. start. It will be the annual Blake Reed Memorial Game, with the newly renovated Blake Reed Memorial Football Locker Room being dedicated at 2:30 p.m.