October 6, 2012 - Few venues in the GLIAC have proved to be as frustrating to the Charger football team as Wayne State's Adams Field. That trend continued Saturday afternoon.
Despite the Charger defense all but shutting down the Wayne State offense over the final three quarters, Hillsdale suffered another frustrating loss at Adams Field, 24-21 Saturday. Hillsdale is now 4-2 overall and 4-1 in the GLIAC and travels to Ferris State next weekend.
Wayne State scored on its opening possession, then took an interception back 82 yards to jump out to an early 14-0 lead in the game. A 74-yard run set the Warriors up deep in Charger territory, but the defense limited the Warriors to a field goal, and it was a 17-0 game with 12:31 left in the second quarter.
From that point on, Wayne State possessed the ball eight more times and generated just 116 yards of total offense against the Hillsdale defense, an average of only 14.5 yards per drive. But it turned out to be just enough, as the Wayne State defense was opportunistic in capitalizing on chances to create turnovers of its own.
Hillsdale turned the ball over four times, twice on interceptions and two on lost fumbles, that stopped scoring drives short. The four turnovers are a season-high this year for the Chargers.
Hillsdale made a valiant comeback after facing a big deficit on the road to last year's national runner-up. Senior QB Anthony Mifsud got the team on the board with a 27-yard touchdown run in the second quarter to make it a 17-7 game. With less than a minute to go until halftime, Mifsid lofted a pass to sophomore WR Brett Miller, who made a gorgeous toe-dragging catch deep in the end zone to retore momentum back to the Chargers. The score stood at 17-14 Wayne State at halftime.
However, the Chargers turned the ball over on their first drive of the second half on a botched snap, setting the Warriors up at the Hillsdale 12-yard line. Two plays later, Wayne State was back up by 10.
Mifsud scored his second rushing touchdown of the day with 5:05 left in the game, finding paydirt from 8 yards out to close the gap to three. The Chargers had two more possessions in the game's final five minutes, but were unable to tie or take the lead.
Wayne State's special teams also made an impact on the ballgame, blocking a field goal early in the fourth quarter that could have made it a one-score game with more than 12 minutes to play.
Mifsud completed 17 of 34 passes for 199 yards through the air. He ran the ball a season-high 17 times, gaining 90 yards, also a season-high.
Senior RB Joe Glendening had his most productive game of his career versus the Warriors, gaining 122 yards on 24 carries. Senior H-back Cam White had a team-high six catches for 52 yards, while Miller hauled in three passes for 66 yards, including his touchdown reception.
Junior DB Nick Galvan led Hillsdale defensively with eight total tackles and two tackles for loss. Junior LB Brett Pasche had seven stops, while sophomore Joe Snyder had a fumble recovery for the Chargers.
Hillsdale has just one win at Adams Field since 1998. Since 2008, the Chargers have lost to the Warriors at Wayne State by scores of 14-7, 14-9 and now 24-21. In each of the last two meetings in Detroit between these teams, one of Wayne State's touchdowns was on an interception return for touchdown.