Furman recovered from a lackluster first half to route Western Carolina 95-0 Saturday at Roberts Field.
Played in rainy conditions,the Paladins failed to generate any forward motion in the first half. The squad looked rusty in the season opener and was penalized more than 25 times for knock ons, off sides and other infractions.
While the underdog Catamounts enjoyed possession for much of the half, WCU was unable to find the try zone. Furman tighthead Lucas Ward bullied into the tryzone twice and flanker Nick Robertson scored a try to stake the Paladins to a 15-0 halftime.
After the break, and a stern lecture from Coach John Roberts, the Paladins immediately found both rhythm and the try zone. When the Furman team began spinning the ball wide, the trys came in droves.
Furman scored 80 points in the second half, a club record. Nine Paladins scored trys.
“We must have had a dozen dropped balls in the first half,” said Coach John Roberts. “Some of that was wet conditions and opening day jitters. But we eliminated those in the second half and found our rhythm.”
Roberts said freshman Jacob Milchuck was inserted at halftime at flyhalf and made an immediate impact by scoring a try and setting up several more.
“Our backline was very fluid under Jake’s charge,” Roberts said. “He was able to get a grip on the wet ball and kept us going forward.”
Furman (1-0) travels to Greenwood Saturday to face Lander (0-1).