UW-Whitewater didn’t get off to a rousing start Saturday at UW-River Falls.
The Falcons went 70 yards in 13 plays to take a 7-0 lead on the undefeated Warhawks.
But that was the highlight of the day for the hosts, who didn’t score another touchdown again until the fourth quarter. By then the UW-Whitewater offense had taken command as quarterback Zach Oles completed five touchdown passes to lead the Warhawks to a 49-28 Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference win.
UW-River Falls had moderate success moving the football, but having to settle for two field goals in the first half and fumbled inside the 5-yard line while only trailing 21-13. Matt Anderson forced the fumble, and Nate Tranel came out with the ball at the Warhawks 1.
Tranel now has two fumble recoveries on the season.
Oles completed 12 of his 21 passes, including five passes to junior receiver Derek Kumerow, who scored twice. Kumerow would have added a third touchdown if not for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that negated a 44-yard onside kick return with 3 minutes, 29 seconds left in the game.
Holte finished the Warhawks’ first drive with an 8-yard touchdown pass from Oles.
Oles completed an 18-yard touchdown pass to Sam DeLany in the second quarter before throwing one to Kumerow for 27 yards later in the quarter and another to Kumerow in the third quarter for 8 yards.
Jaylon Edmonson caught the fifth touchdown pass in the third quarter on a screen pass that covered 35 yards to give Whitewater a 42-13 lead with 2:28 to play. The Edmonson touchdown was set up by sophomore linebacker Aaron Sturdevant’s interception.
Egon Hein and Zach Sutphin also had interceptions.
Kaleb Kaminski had 13 tackles to lead the Warhawks.
Whitewater’s Alex Peete carried the ball 13 times for 107 yards and a touchdown run of 59 yards.
UW-Whitewater (7-0, 4-0 WIAC) is now the lone-undefeated team in the league after UW-La Crosse earned a 31-3 victory against UW-Oshkosh on Saturday. The Eagles (5-2, 3-1) will travel to Whitewater for a 1 p.m. game next Saturday.
UW-WHITEWATER 49, UW-RIVER FALLS 28
Whitewater 14 14 14 7—49
River Falls 7 6 0 15—28
Scoring summary: RF—Beckman 5 run (Patterson kick). W—Holte 8 pass Oles (Gasienica kick). W—Peete 59 run (Gasienica kick). RF—FG Patterson 28. W—DeLany 18 pass Oles (Gasienica kick). RF—FG Patterson 37. W—Kumerow 27 pass Oles (Gasienica kick). W—Kumerow 8 pass Oles (Gasienica kick). W—Edmonson 35 pass Oles (Gasienica kick). RF—Praschak 63 interception return. RF—Reissmann 29 pass Beckman (Traxler pass). W—Parish 15 run (Gasienica kick).
Statistics: First downs—UW-W 19, UW-RF 31. Rushes (att.-yds)—UW-W 34-209, UW-RF 41-84. Passes (comp.-att.-yds.)—UW-W 13-26-2, UW-RF 42-61-3. Passing yards—UW-W 220, UW-RF 411. Fumbles-lost—UW-W 0-0, UW-RF 0-0. Penalties-yards—UW-W 13-158, UW-RF 5-89.
Individual leaders—UW-W Peete 13-108, UW-RF Fugate 17-52. Passing—UW-W Oles 12-21-211, UW-RF Beckman 40-57-387. Receiving—UW-W Kumerow 5-61, Holte 3-70; UW-RF Herink 15-143.