BY KYLE BEERY | SPORTS CONTRIBUTOR
The Butler football team now finds itself in a deep hole in its quest for a third straight Pioneer Football League Championship. The Bulldogs (3-3 overall, 1-2 PFL) fell on the road at Campbell University Saturday 28-9.
The Bulldogs were bit by the injury bug in the first quarter, as starting quarterback Matt Shiltz and All-PFL offensive lineman David Tiwari left the game with undisclosed injuries.
Malcom Weaver replaced Shiltz under center, and finished the day with 166 yards passing and one interception on 14 completions in 29 attempts. Shiltz was 4-of-5 for 31 yards before leaving the game.
The Camels (3-3 overall) remain at the top of the PFL, now holding a perfect 3-0 conference record and a three-game winning streak.
Campbell opened the scoring with a 50-yard touchdown pass from Dakota Wolf to Jared Joyner with 7:26 remaining in the first quarter.
The Camels would open a 14-3 lead late in the first half, only to have the Bulldogs answer with a 71-yard drive capped by a 4-yard Rico Watson touchdown run to put the score at 14-9 heading to the half.
That would be as close as Butler got though, as Campbell put up two unanswered touchdowns in the second half.
Wolf finished the day 34-of-42 passing with 306 yards and two touchdowns. The Camels out-gained the Bulldogs 384-218 in total yards of offense.
Butler returns to Indianapolis next Saturday, hosting the University of San Diego Toreros.
San Diego rolled the Bulldogs 42-14 last season. The Toreros won a share of the PFL title along with Butler last year, but due to self-reported recruiting violations, they vacated their title, giving way to Butler to be the first team to ever represent the PFL in the Football Championship Subdivision Playoffs.
The Bulldogs will have an uphill climb to get back to that place this year, as Campbell sits undefeated at the top along with Jacksonville. Both teams beat Butler and would hold the tiebreaker for the PFL’s automatic playoff bid.
Kickoff will be at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday at the Butler Bowl, where the Bulldogs have a 1-1 record this year.