Area football players spark Wesley's run

Alumni Report


Up at Wesley College in Dover, Del., a Division III football team stacked with talent from the Baltimore area is still trying to come down to earth after last Saturday's 46-7 romp over Bridgewater (Va.) in the NCAA quarterfinal playoffs.

"We're having a dream, and we don't want to wake up from it," said junior free safety Mario Harris, who played at Annapolis.

Wesley coach Mike Drass could think of one way to bring his 12-1 team back to reality.

"We're just getting ready to get some cold-weather gear and head to Wisconsin," said Drass whose team will meet Wisconsin-Whitewater in the NCAA Division III semifinals Saturday at 1 p.m.

There are 24 players from the area on the Wolverines, led by Harris and sophomore wide receiver Larry Beavers. The two have been close friends since their playing days at Annapolis.

The 5-foot-8, 180-pound Harris leads the team with 106 tackles, five forced fumbles, four passes broken up, two interceptions, and one fumble recovery. Harris is a first-team Division III All-America selection this season.

"Mario plays big, he plays like he's 6-2, 200 pounds," Drass said. "He's a ferocious hitter. He's small, and teams don't think of him giving you a whack. But he'll knock you on your butt."

And Beavers?

"Larry's one of the fastest players you're going to see in small college football," Drass said. "When he has the ball in his hands, any time he touches the ball he has a chance to score. The reason we got Larry here is he wanted to be with his friend Mario."

Beavers scored two touchdowns Saturday, one on a 65-yard run off a reverse and the other on a 24-yard touchdown pass. Beavers leads the team in overall scoring with 16 touchdowns and is second in receptions with 48 for 1,076 yards and 15 touchdowns.

The 5-10, 170-pound Beavers also tops the team in all-purpose yards with an average of 127.5 yards a game and is first in kickoff returns with 18 for 431 yards.

Another key player is freshman starting offensive tackle Dave Erdman (6-4, 297) of River Hill.

"He does a great job of being a better athlete," Drass said. "He runs a 5.0 flat 40-yard dash, and I think as he's learning the game, the sky's the limit for him. "

Drass also acknowledged senior wide receiver Curtis Gore (Wilde Lake) and senior defensive end Anthony Johnson (Southern). The coach said Johnson is possibly the "best leader we've had at Wesley."

Others top Wolverines from the area are senior linebacker Bryan Sorenson (Southern), sophomore linebacker Josh Jones (Eastern Tech), senior cornerback Brian Bush (Parkville), and freshman cornerback Terrell Ingram (Old Mill).

Contact Bill Free by e-mail at or by phone at 410-833-5349.

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