Former Swede out to defeat alma mater Saturday night

By Steve Sell
September 24, 2015

LINDSBORG — The Ottawa Braves have been the KCAC’s gold standard the past six years, winning four football championships.

But maybe some of the glitter is starting to flake off.

The Braves opened KCAC play with a thud last week losing a 43-17 decision to Tabor, a game that took place in Ottawa no less.

You can expect the Braves to come into Bethany College’s Anderson Stadium breathing fire Saturday night as they are still looking for their first win of the year — just like the Swedes.

Ottawa is 0-2 overall and Bethany 0-3, as the Swedes have played an extra non-conference game. 

Kickoff is set for 6 p.m.

The game marks the return of former Bethany College All-American Kent Kessinger, who has established perhaps the KCAC’s best program since arriving in Ottawa in 2004. After four up-and-down years, the Braves have won no less than eight games the last seven years.

Like Ottawa, Bethany is coached by a former Swede alum, Paul Hubbard, whose team let a golden opportunity slip away last week in a 30-23 loss to Bethel. Bethany blew out to a 20-6 lead and appeared to have matters well in hand, but put it on cruise control and could never regain the form that vaulted it into the lead.

Ottawa generally has been the KCAC’s top offensive team during Kessinger’s tenure, but he doesn’t have the playmakers as year’s past. OU is averaging just over 300 yards a game, while Bethany is at 263. Normally Ottawa has a prolific passing game, but so far it is averaging just 186 yards through the air, though it ranks third in the KCAC, which is more tilted toward the run this season.