CARROLLTON, Ga. – The 2017 regular season ended on a sour note on Saturday afternoon, as the 24th-ranked West Georgia Wolves fell 34-29 to West Florida at University Stadium.
The Argonauts erased an early deficit with 24 unanswered points, and held off a final Hail Hary attempt from West Georgia to upset the Wolves on Senior Night to end a six game home winning streak at University Stadium. Offensively, the two teams hung similar numbers as West Georgia outgained the Argonauts by only three yards with 398 yards of total offense. Defensively, however, the Argos were able to get the lone turnover of the game that turned into seven points that would prove to be the difference.
The opening quarter was all West Georgia, as the defense held the Argos to just 30 yards on 14 plays, and jumped out to a 16-0 lead. Willie Candler found DeNiko Carter on a deep ball on West Georgia’s first play from scrimmage as Carter then took it to pay dirt for a 72-yard score. The PAT was no good as UWG led 6-0 after 19 seconds of action.
After Trey Wiggins added a 20-yard field goal to make it a 9-0 game, Mikell Lands-Davis added to the tally with a 22-yard rushing touchdown on the final play of the first quarter to stretch the lead to 16-0.
West Florida scored 14 unanswered points in the second quarter as Mike Beaudry hit Josh Smiley for a 12 yard score, and then connected with Rodney Coates for a seven-yard score with 21 seconds left in the half to make it 16-14 at the break.
The Argonauts added ten points right out of the break, as West Florida capitalized on a fumble recovery, driving down the field and scoring on what was a near interception that deflected up and into the arms of a wide open UWF receiver. After UWF added a field goal to take an 24-16 lead, Candler connected with Shaq Roland for a 41-yard score to cut it back to a one-point game at 24-23 with 5:11 left in the third quarter.
West Florida then added ten straight points in the fourth quarter, and the Wolves answered with a seven-yard touchdown pass from Willie Candler to Taylor Turner with 2:24 left in the game to cut the lead to 34-29. The defense held the Argonauts, and then had one last opportunity following a punt, but the Hail Mary would fall incomplete.
The Wolves wrap up the regular season at 8-3, and will await the decision of the DII South Region Committee to learn their postseason fate. The Selection Show is set for 5 p.m. on Sunday.