Salem has been playing football since 1992 and Wesleyan’s first season was in 1998, but the teams had never met before last season. Now, the schools, separated by 41 miles, are starting to make it a yearly occurrence. Wesleyan, a Gwinnett County Class AA private school, will travel to Conyers Friday for a non-region game against the Class AAAAA Seminoles, the second consecutive season the schools have met in week two.
Both teams will be looking to snap a losing streak. Wesleyan, which lost to Holy Innocents’ 17-14 in the season opener has dropped five consecutive games. Salem, a 20-0 loser to Rockdale, has lost seven consecutive games.
In the loss to Rockdale, the Seminoles’ defense didn’t play poorly, but the offense was nonexistent. Salem was held to 86 total yards and just 19 in the second half.
“Bottom line, we never got that good running game going,” said Salem coach John Starr. “We’ve got to generate some offense.”
Wesleyan’s quarterback Christian Stark was one of the few players to generate offense in the Wolves’ week one loss. Stark, making his first start at quarterback, had a 14-yard passing touchdown in the first quarter, then added a one-yard touchdown run — part of a 68-yard effort on the ground — early in the second to give Wesleyan its last lead.
Stark and the visiting Wolves are hoping for a repeat of 2012. After a one-point loss to Holy Innocents in the opener, Wesleyan rattled off four straight wins, beginning with a 38-19 victory over Salem.
For Starr and his club, it’s all about improving.
“I just want to go home, start breaking it down and see how we can get better,” Starr said after the Rockdale loss. “I’m still excited.”