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Football preview: Willamette at Whitworth

Fifth-year senior Ian Kolste leads Whitworth’s passing attack. (Tyler Tjomsland / The Spokesman-Review)
Fifth-year senior Ian Kolste leads Whitworth’s passing attack. (Tyler Tjomsland / The Spokesman-Review)

Bearcats at Pirates

Kickoff: 12:30 p.m. at the Pine Bowl

Records: Willamette (3-5, 2-3 Northwest Conference), Whitworth (6-2, 4-1 NWC)

TV/Radio: SWX/1230-AM

Overview: The Whitworth Pirates come home for their final home game, taking on the Bearcats for Senior Day. Willamette has shown flashes, such as the 63-24 pasting of Puget Sound to open the season, but has otherwise been inconsistent. “Two years ago, we had an unbelievable game here,” Whitworth coach Rod Sandberg said of a 61-45 win. “Last year, there was a monsoon” in Salem during a 20-16 come-from behind win for the Pirates. The Pirates again will be led by quarterback Ian Kolste, who already holds the records for passing yards and total yards in a season with two games remaining. Running back Duke DeGaetano (131 carries, 754 yards) is only one rushing touchdown away from tying the team record of 18 set in 2008. The Bearcats are led by running back Taylor Wyman who averages a conference leading 107.8 yards a game. Willamette is averaging 22.6 points and 381.5 yards a game and will be facing a Whitworth defense that has been giving up a whopping 529.4 yards a game. The Pirates will be without second-leading receiver Chase Naccarato (43 catches, 379 yards), who broke a hand in the 55-35 win last week at Pacific.


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