Tabor opens season with 32-13 win over Kansas Wesleyan

The Tabor Bluejays began defense of their 2004 KCAC title with a convincing 32-13 win over the Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes Saturday night in Salina.

Roger Butler scored the first of his three touchdowns from 2 yards out with 4:55 to play in the first quarter to put Tabor on top 7-0.

Wesleyan answered with an eight play, 72 yard drive to knot the score at 7 with 2:48 to play in the opening quarter.

Quarterback Ricky Ishida connected with T.J. Jackson with 11:12 to play in the half giving Tabor a narrow 13-7 lead which it carried into the halftime locker room.

The second half was all Bluejays though, as Tabor took its opening possession of the second half and drove 55 yards in eight plays with Butler sealing the deal with a 15 yard scoring burst to put the Bluejays on top 19-7.

Butler scored again at the 6:51 mark of the third quarter, this time from 4 yards out, staking the Bluejays to a 26-7 lead.

Kansas Wesleyan fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Tabor recovered setting up Tabor’s final scoring drive as
Ishida hooked up with freshman Sage Hemmert from 24 yards out to round out the Bluejay scoring and give Tabor a commanding 32-7 advantage.

Wesleyan managed a late third quarter score to cut the lead to 32-13 but a scoreless fourth quarter resulted in the 19 point Tabor win.

Tabor rolled up 449 yards of total offense led by Butler who carried the ball 32 times for 158 yards and Ishida who was 17-of-41 passing for 220 yards while distributing the ball to eight different receivers.

The two teams combined for 26 penalties and 258 yards as Tabor had 16 infractions for 156 yards, but in the end, the Bluejays moved to 1-0 while Wesleyan fell to 0-1.

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