Walton Leads Bearcats to 28-14 Over Menlo

SALEM, OR — Cameron Walton threw two touchdown passes and ran 37 yards for another score as the Willamette University Bearcats (2-2) rolled to a 28-14 win over Menlo College (0-2).

The Bearcats rolled up 406 yards of total offense, but needed a circus play on a 57-yard pass from Walton to Brett Meyer to hold off Menlo in the second half as they evened their record heading into Northwest Conference play next week.

The Bearcats broke on top early, scoring the first 21 points of the game.

Flanker Jeff Liepman out-jumped two Menlo defenders to haul in a 30-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the second quarter, capping an 11-play, 75-yard drive. Matt Bicocca's extra point put the Bearcats up 14-0.

On Willamette’s next possession, Walton pushed the lead to 21-0 when he raced 37 yards on an option play.

The Bearcats first score came when Walton found C.J. Washington for a 21-yard TD pass with 10:04 to play in the first quarter. That capped another long drive, this one covering nine plays and 79 yards.

Menlo’s fist score came with only 12 seconds left in the first half when quarterback Adam Hazel hit tight end Joey Risi on a 26-yard touchdown pass.

The most acrobatic play of the game came in the third quarter when Walton and Brett Meyer combined for a 57-yard pass play to set up a Calvin Keyser-Allen three-yard touchdown run. Walton looked to be sacked, escaped from two Menlo tacklers and found Meyer wide open at the 25-yard line. Meyer took it to the three-yard line. Keyser-Allen scored on the next play and the extra point by Bicocca made it 28-7.

Menlo pulled to within 28-14 early in the fourth quarter when Hazel hit wide receiver Marvin Stickel for a five-yard touchdown pass. That capped a 10-play, 73-yard drive.

But despite a pair of long drives in the second half, the Oaks failed to score.

For the game, Willamette rushed for 281 yards compared to just 30 yards for Menlo. The Bearcats rolled up 406 yards of total offense. Willamette did fumble the ball six times, but recovered every one. The Bearcat defense had six sacks to one for Menlo.

Individually, Walton led the Bearcats in rushing with 62 yards on 17 carries. Steve Wilbon had 12 carries for 59 yards. Calvin Keyser-Allen had 10 carries for 53 yards. Seven different Willamette players carried the ball, rushing for 281 yards on 56 carries.

Eddie Connor had ten carries for 30 yards to lead the Oaks. Overall, Menlo rushed for 30 yards on 25 carries.

Walton completed six of ten passes for 125 yards and two touchdowns. Hazel completed 25 of 45 passes for 236 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Stickel had eight catches for 74 yards.

The Bearcats host the University of Puget Sound next week in their Northwest Conference opener.

Cameron Walton

Cameron Walton