The opponent changes, but similar challenges await the Whitworth Pirates in Week 2.
After losing its season opener to Hardin-Simmons, which featured dual-threat quarterback Justin Feaster and standout receiver ZaVious Robbins, Whitworth calls on Pomona-Pitzer and another talented quarterback-receiver combination today at Merritt Field in Claremont, Calif.
Whitworth’s defense did a decent job, allowing three touchdowns to Feaster, Robbins and Co., but the offense was inconsistent in a 27-7 loss. The nationally ranked Cowboys’ final TD came on an interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Pomona-Pitzer (0-0) returns 18 starters from last year’s 3-5 team. The Sagehens, members of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, are led by four-year starting quarterback Jacob Caron, son of head coach Roger Caron, and receiver Robert Maki. Caron had 12 touchdowns passing and 13 rushing last season. Maki had 91 receptions for 1,219 yards.
“The quarterback throws it very well and he’s a big guy that runs exceptionally well,” Whitworth coach John Tully said. “The key will be really containing him and not letting him loose on a scramble and giving up a big pass or run. We want to make them march down the field.”
Tully was encouraged with several aspects from the season opener. Adam Anderson, returning from offseason ankle surgery, had 97 yards rushing and 40 receiving. He seemed to get better in the second half.
“Three weeks from now, I think he’ll be close to where he was a couple of years ago,” Tully said.
Tully said sophomore quarterback Taylor Eglet was “solid” and should continue to improve with more game experience. Backup Andrew DeFelice played one series against Hardin-Simmons and could direct a couple of possessions today.
“Both of those guys have ability and we want to see what they can do,” Tully said. “Looking over the last two seasons, we’ve lost three quarterbacks (to injuries) and I think we have to have two guys ready.”