Davion Wilson didn’t even start Friday night. He missed a practice this week.
He didn’t get his hands on the ball until Rock Island’s ninth play of the game.
But once he got it, he was pretty hard to stop. As always.
Wilson rushed for 282 yards in 23 carries and scored four touchdowns as Rock Island finally stopped stopping itself in the second half on its way to a 43-22 victory over Galesburg in the Western Big Six opener at Almquist Field.
The Rocks (2-2 overall, 1-0 in the Big Six) cranked out 575 yards of offense in the contest as quarterback Ian Purvis also had a good day, completing 13 of 22 passes for 175 yards. Senior Aaron Voss caught eight passes for 115 yards.
And there was someone else in the offense that had a very good night.
Both Wilson and Rocky coach Ben Hammer were quick to give lots of credit to the offensive line of Kobe Rios, Logan Swartz, Will Maurer, Chase Spragg, Tommy Smith and Peyton Mahmutovic. When Mahmutovic hurt his knee, there was no drop-off when Donovan Rogers came into the game.
“Our offensive line did it tonight,’’ Hammer said.
“I really enjoy running behind those guys,’’ Wilson added. “It’s a lot of fun.’’
Rios admitted that he and his pals enjoyed the night, too.
“When you see someone else succeeding and you know it’s in part because of what you did, it gets us pretty juiced,’’ he said.
The Rocks had 315 yards at halftime, but they didn’t have a very big lead because they also had committed 10 penalties for 77 yards.
Because of that, Galesburg trailed only 22-15. The Silver Streaks (0-4, 0-1) rolled down the field in the final minute of the half with the help of some trickery. Kobe Ramirez gained 14 yards on a fourth-and-2 fake punt and after quarterback Connor Aten scored the touchdown on a 7-yard run, he added a 2-point conversion by running up the middle out of a swinging gate formation.
The Rocks didn’t let any of that bother them, though.
Wilson, who now has 786 yards in the first four games, said Hammer’s halftime message was: “Just keep fighting, keep doing what we’re doing.’’
His advice to Wilson personally: “Just hit the hole fast and keep scoring touchdowns.’’
That’s exactly what the 180-pound junior did. After an exchange of fumbles to open the half, Wilson took matters into his own hands, charging 31 yards for a touchdown, carrying a couple of Galesburg players the last few yards. Purvis ran for a 2-point conversion to make it 29-15.
The Rocks put together another long drive on their next possession with Jakye Hill capping an 11-play, 70-yard march with a 12-yard TD run.
Wilson went 23 yards untouched on the first play of the fourth quarter for his fourth touchdown of the night to pretty much finish off the Silver Streaks.
Wilson had gotten the scoring started with a 5-yard touchdown run in the middle of the first quarter, setting up the TD with a 27-yard gallop on the previous play.
Galesburg, which had scored only 15 points in its first three games, quickly countered with a 38-yard TD pass from Aten to Dewon Pulley but the Rocks’ offense kept clicking.
They regained the lead on a 38-yard scoring run by Wilson and following an interception by Bryce Trask, they grabbed a 21-7 lead when Purvis hit Voss with a 45-yard TD pass.