Bethel College football coach Terry Harrison, along with most of his staff and a good percentage of his players, will experience “Menno Bowl” for the first time when the Threshers travel to Hillsboro at 7 p.m. Saturday to go against arch rival Tabor.
The Threshers enter the game 0-3, with two of those losses by six points or less. Tabor is 1-1, coming off a 28-7 win over Friends last week. The Falcons opened the season with a 13-10 loss to Saint Mary in the opening week of the season, followed by a bye week.
“They are a good team,” Harrison said. “They have only played two games, but they are 1-1. They have been one of the more successful teams in the conference, there’s no doubt about that.”
Tabor has used three quarterbacks this season. Trey McGee has hit 13 of 30 passes with two interceptions for 142 yards. Micheal McPeak has hit 10 of 22 passes with two interceptions for 126 yards. Kade Holderread has hit six of 10 passes for 99 yards.
Drevion Cooper leads the running back corps with 35 carries for 199 yards and a touchdown. Josh Johnson has 28 carries for 122 yards and three touchdowns. McGee has 20 carries for 55 yards and a touchdown.
C.J. Tate leads the receivers with seven catches for 190 yards,
“They are pretty multiple on offense,” Harrison said. “They don’t throw as much as the first three teams we played. They run the ball a lot more. They have a good running back and two good quarterbacks. It will be a relief for our team to face a running team, since that plays into our strengths with so many pass-happy teams in the conference.”
The Tabor defense is led by Brad Kitsner with 16 total tackles and Tanner Hettenbach and Kaleb Neuschafer with 14 each. Melvin Williams has 13 total tackles. Caleb Devine has two interceptions. Hellenbach has a fumble recovery.
For Bethel, Zach Esau has hit 21 of 39 passes for 367 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions. Esau also leads the team in rushing with 219 yards and two touchdowns. Cameryn Harrison has 212 yards rushing and a touchdown. Braedon Starlin-Driver has 206 yards rushing and a pair of touchdowns. Gary Jolivet has 166 yards rushing with two touchdowns.
Tanner Galliart leads the receivers with 208 yards on nine catches and two touchdowns.
On defense, Jordan Bell has 37 total tackles, followed by Joshua Seabolt with 30 and Charles Johnson with 19. Bell and Seabolt are ranked 1-2 in the conference in total tackles. Each have 1.5 sacks.
“Our kids are hungry right now,” Terry Harrison said. “The way we’re competing right now, results may not be showing up on the scoreboard, but if they keep playing at that level, it’s going to come in time. As long as we continue to do the right things, results on the scoreboard will start to come out in our favor. We need to keep improving and keep getting better every time out. So far, we’ve been doing that.”