Wittenberg heads to Wooster after disappointing loss at home to Denison

Tigers have won 12 straight games against Sc ots

Credit: David Jablonski

Credit: David Jablonski

Wittenberg has played bagpipe music over the loudspeakers for years in practice whenever the next opponent is the Wooster Scots. That hasn’t changed in the first season for coach Jim Collins.

Collins said the players wanted to keep that tradition going this week in preparation for a 1:30 p.m. Saturday game at Wooster. Anything should help as the Tigers try to bounce back from what has to be considered the most disappointing performance of the season: a 28-10 loss at home to Denison.

“We’ve responded well,” Collins said Wednesday. “We came out yesterday and had a good practice. We had weightlifting on Sunday and Monday, and it went well. It’s not easy to get that feeling out of here. The only way to work on it is to get focused on what’s next and the task at hand. You get in the weight room, and you go hard. You get on the practice field, and you go hard with great concentration and focus.”

Wittenberg (4-3, 4-2) sat alone in first place with a half-game lead entering the game against Denison. It’s now tied for second with Denison (6-2, 4-2).

DePauw (6-1, 4-1) and Wabash (5-2, 4-1) are tied for first place. In all likelihood, the NCAC championship will be decided Nov. 12 when Wabash plays at DePauw in the 128th Monon Bell Classic.

Wabash plays Hiram (1-5, 1-6) and Kenyon (3-4, 2-3) the next two weeks, while DePauw plays Kenyon and Oberlin (0-7, 0-5).

Wittenberg’s next opponent, Wooster (4-3, 2-3), is 0-3 against teams in the top half of the standings. It has been outscored 142-21 by Wabash, DePauw and Ohio Wesleyan.

Wittenberg has won 12 straight games in the series since a 27-6 loss at Wooster in 2008.

“They’re sitting right now with the same record we have in terms of overall record, so it’s going to be a challenge,” Collins said, “and no matter what we’ve got to play better than we played this past week.”

In looking back at the Denison game, Collins said, “In critical situations offensively, we just didn’t execute to the best of our ability, and that was the difference.”

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