Wolves travel to face Shorter | Sports


It’s a short road trip for the 14th-ranked West Georgia Wolves football team this Saturday as the UWG heads to Rome to face the Shorter Hawks in Gulf South Conference at 1pm.

Although this is a short trip, it is still a road game in the GSC, and Wolves (3-0, 1-0 GSC) are ready to set their record of invincibility at stake in their first afternoon game of the season.

“We’re ready to start our second week of the conference,” said head coach David Dean at this week’s weekly press conference. “We have a big challenge ahead of us because every time you play on the road in this conference it’s a tough test.”

Shorter (2-1, 0-0 GSC) is in the midst of one of his most successful starts in recent history with wins over Brevard and most recently a 38-17 road win over Clark Atlanta on the week last.

“They lasted two or three years and didn’t win a game, and now they’re 2-1,” Dean said of the Hawks. “Coach (Zach) Morrison and his staff have done an amazing job transforming this program. I was impressed with the way they recruit and they bring in people who can compete at the Southern Gulf Conference.

West Georgia, meanwhile, is 3-0 for the second time under Dean and for the 11th time in 40 years of history, and the Wolves defense is a big part of that. The West Georgia defense is ranked fourth in the country in total defense, allowing just 192 total attacking yards per game.

The Hawks present some interesting challenges for Wolves ahead of Saturday’s game.

“What really impresses me about Shorter is how well they can move the ball,” Dean said. “They have two tight ends that impressed us, two good running backs, and their quarterback is playing really well, and they have wide receivers who play.”

One of the running backs Dean refers to is Hawks leader Jaiden Dollard, who has 232 yards and four touchdowns.

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“The thing is, he gets a lot of yards after contact,” Dean said of Dollard. “So once we have made that contact, we have to lock it up and the cavalry has to come.”

In three games, West Georgia’s leading tackle was first-year defensive end Cody Gast, who totaled 16 tackles, including eight solo saves. Senior defensive end TJ Arnold has been in the right place at the right time this season, recovering two fumbles so far.

Offensively, Wolves are looking to continue against Shorter. Led by junior quarterback Harrison Frost, Wolves erased a deficit late last week to defeat 22nd-nd Delta State, despite some adversity in weather conditions and turnovers.

“Harrison has an incredible talent for putting it all behind him, whether it’s good or bad,” added Dean. “He has the natural ability to do it, and I think it rubs off on everyone else on our team. “

Frost is in the top 25 in all of Division II for passing touchdowns (7), passing yards (881), passing yards per game (293.7) and completion percentage (63 , 3). When it comes to goals per game, Frost is in the NCAA’s Top 10, ranking ninth with 25.3 goals per game.

Frost’s main target this season has been senior Mechane Slade. The Roswell native is second in the league in 28th nationally in touchdowns with three and his 194 receiving yards in three games are fifth in the GSC.

These weapons and many others seem to light up a different kind of defensive look than the Hawks.

“It’s a little different kind of defense that we’re up against this week,” Dean said. “Last week we faced a 3-3 stack, and this week we’re up against a four-man front with two linebackers in the box.”

It should be another great Gulf South Conference football game when Wolves and Hawks meet for the ninth time in program history. Wolves lead the series 7-1, never losing to Shorter in Rome.

Kick-off from Barron Stadium is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday.

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