Newberry announces 2023 football schedule – ABC Columbia
NEWBERRY, S.C. — The defending Piedmont Division and South Atlantic Conference champion Newberry College football team has announced their pathway to a third straight conference title, including a new opponent for their season opening matchup
That match-up will feature a trip to Shippensburg, Pa. as the Wolves will take on the Raiders of Shippensburg University on September 2 at 12:00 p.m. This will be the first match-up between the two teams in program history. Shippensburg finished 5-6 on the season last year while taking home a 3-4 conference record in the competitive Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference. Returning home to the friendly confines of Setzler Field the next week, September 9, the Wolves will welcome in a familiar foe in the Crusaders of North Greenville University. Newberry currently holds a 13-5 advantage over the Crusaders all-time, including a 29-22 victory over NGU in Tigerville last season.
“I’m excited about starting the season against Shippensburg,” said head coach Todd Knight. “They are a really good football team and have a tradition of winning there; it will be a great test and measuring stick for us. Coming home to an in-state team after that, i’m excited to see where we are as a team, as expectations are extremely high coming off back-to-back championships.”
The Wolves then make their foray into conference play as the league schedule looks the same as it did a year ago for Newberry, starting off with a home match-up with the Wasps of Emory and Henry on September 16. The Wolves were able to pull off the overtime victory over the Wasps a season ago in their first match-up since the early 70’s. Newberry holds the 5-2 advantage all-time. The second road trip of the year sees the Wolves take the short trip down the road to Greenwood, S.C. where the Flying Fleet of Erskine College play their home games on September 23. After restarting their football program in 2021, the Wolves have had the Fleet’s number going 3-0 against them in that stretch. Overall, Newberry holds a 19-15-2 all-time record against Erskine. This will also be the final season that the Flying Fleet will be a conference opponent for the Wolves as they transition to a one-year deal with the Gulf South Conference before Conference Carolinas returns to sponsoring football as a league sport in 2025.
Looking to avenge one of their two losses in the past season, the Wolves wil then turn their attention to the Eagles of Carson-Newman University who will make the trip to Newberry on September 30. One of only three league members to hold an overall winning record with the Wolves, thanks in part to their national prowess in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, the Eagle hold the 33-24 advantage all-time over Newberry. However, the Wolves have had more success against the Eagles in recent years, winning four of the last six matchups against them and hold a 17-10 advantage over them in home matchups. Another road trip for Newberry sees them travel to Wilson, N.C. to take on the Bulldogs of Barton College. This will be just the fourth matchup all-time against the two schools with Newberry holding a perfect 3-0 and record against the Bulldogs, including two wins on the road.
The Wolves then return home for a pair of contests against Catawba (10/14) and Lenoir-Rhyne (10/21). Newberry moved ahead of the Indians in the all-time record last year with a 34-27 win in Salisbury that saw the Wolves now move to 42-41-3 all-time against them. The last 10 matchups against Catawba have been favorable for the Wolves as they hold the 7-3 advantage over that stretch. The Battle for the Bishop’s Trophy returns to Setzler Field on October 21 after seeing the Wolves defend the trophy in Hickory last season with 38-24 win over then No. 12 Lenoir-Rhyne that saw the Wolves take over their spot in the national poll the next week. Newberry has taken the last two games against Lenoir-Rhyne.
The only other loss from the 2022 season sits next on the Newberry schedule as they travel to Gaffney, S.C. on October 28 to take on the Saints of Limestone University. The Wolves will look to avenge their homecoming loss to the Saints from last season, as it’s only the second time the Saints have been able to defeat the Wolves with Newberry holding the 6-2 all-time advantage. Oddly enough, the Wolves two losses to the Saints have both come with Newberry having home field advantage as they are a perfect 3-0 against Limestone in away games. A visit from the Wingate Bulldogs wraps up what would be considered the regular season of conference play as the two teams meet at Setzler Field on November 4. The Wolves were able to secure the Piedmont Division with a win over the Bulldogs last year while they have the 7-3 advantage over Wingate in the last 10 meetings.
“We know that we have a target on our back, but we’ve been having a good spring practice season and am looking forward to what we will put out on the field in the fall,” added Knight. “The Limestone loss stung last year on homecoming so we have that one kind of circled in the back of our heads, but know that this is a very competitive conference and we will have to bring our A-game to every matchup if we want to be successful.”
The final matchup of the season is a moving target for the Wolves as while it is currently schedule for a road trip to Mars Hill on November 11, the Wolves could travel to any of the Mountain Division teams for the final game of the season if they are to secure the Piedmont Division title for the second straight year to compete for a SAC Championship. The Wolves and Lions were scheduled to meet last year at the end of the season already, but the standings shook out for them to compete for the first SAC Championship with the Wolves taking away the 27-24 victory.
The WKDK Radio team of Jimmie Coggins and Al De Lachica will be on site for every Newberry football game, including making the trip to Shippensburg to broadcast. Once the Wolves hit conference action, live video will be available through FloSports, the official live streaming provider of the South Atlantic Conference.
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