STERLING, Kan. - The Bethel College Threshers football team played an away game against Sterling College on Saturday afternoon. This was an offensive shootout with plenty of touchdowns to satisfy any football fan. After all the touchdowns and excitement of the game, the Threshers fell just short in this shootout with a 70-56 loss to the Sterling Warriors.
The Threshers started off strong and played tough on offense all game. The Threshers started the game off with a 2 play 60 yard drive that was capped off with a 50 yard touchdown run by Jalen Sykes (SR/Bakersfield, CA) to make it a 7-6 game in the 1st quarter. That drive was a sign of more to come as the Threshers continued to roll through the Sterling defense.
Sykes had a tremendous game on the ground as he ended his day with a career high 330 rushing yards and five touchdowns. Sykes has proven to be the workhorse Bethel can rely on this season He is now leading the NAIA in rushing yards per game, sitting just above 150. He also leads the conference with total rushing yards on the season, at 904. The running game was made possible by the offensive line who put together holes large enough for a semi truck. The offensive line includes Santiago Aragon (SR/Mora, NM), Anthony Romero (SR/Salinas, CA), Kerry Washington (SR/Wichita, KS), Kyle Wilson (JR/California City, CA), and Henry Baxter (SO/Dothan, AL).
The passing game also showed life on Saturday under the direction of Chase Sparks (FR/Oklahoma City, Okla.) at quarterback. Sparks ended the day with 222 passing yards and three touchdowns. The passing attack was aided by the receivers who snagged key passes and torched the Sterling defense all day. Marquis Jackson (SR/Miami, FL) led the receiving core with 107 yards and two touchdown grabs. Tahj Davidson (FR/Edmond, OK) accounted for 32 receiving yards and one touchdown. Montero DuBose (JR/Indianapolis, Ind.) was 2nd in all purpose yards with 110.
The offense accounted for a total of 592 yards of total offense with eight touchdowns on the day. The ground game continues to be a strong point for the Threshers offense as they've put up 556 rushing yards in the last two games.
Unfortunately, the defense had a bit of a rough outing. The Threshers pass defense came into the game as the #2 unit in the NAIA in terms of yardage given up, but couldn't quite contain Sterling quarterback Cedrick Phillips. Phillips has proven to be a talented player, as he was awarded NAIA Offensive Player of the Week earlier this season. The Threshers allowed Phillips to throw for six touchdowns, and add 142 rushing yards. Without the key shutdown defensive stops they have been getting, the Threshers couldn't quite secure the victory.
The Threshers look to keep the offense rolling in their next game this Saturday the 22nd, as they host Southwestern. The game will be played at 1:30 PM.