Juniata and Gettysburg each flex offensive muscles as Bullets down Eagles, 58-27
(Posted September 17, 2011)
HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- There was plenty of offense, a healthy dose of special teams thrills, and some brilliant defense played at times, all of which resulted in Juniata College and Gettysburg College combining for 835 yards of total offense as Gettysburg downed Juniata, 58-27, in a Centennial Conference football matchup Saturday afternoon at Knox Stadium.
Juniata (0-3, 0-2 Centennial) tallied 239 yards of offense, most since the Eagles racked up 386 yards in last year's meeting with the Bullets, and the 27 points marked Juniata's highest scoring performance since a 53-41 loss to Dickinson to close out the 2008 season.
Eagles freshman quarterback Ward Udinski (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks West) posted 131 yards through the air on 20-of-46 passing with one interception and two touchdown passes, and carried 11 times on the ground for 43 yards.
Udinski's favorite target for the afternoon was junior wideout Julian Valdiserri (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mt. Lebanon), who hauled in eight passes for 46 yards and both touchdown receptions. Freshman receiver Hunter Phillips (Funkstown, Md./South Hagerstown) had five catches for 45 yards, with Dinambi Butler (Washington, D.C./Archbishop Carroll) pulling down a pair of receptions for eight yards.
Junior running back Quadir Christian (Johnstown, Pa./Greater Johnstown) had 10 carries for 13 yards, most of that coming in Juniata's first possession of the game. Christian had a pair of impressive runs for eight and seven yards respectively in the Eagles' opening drive, but the Gettysburg defense was able to bottle-up Christian the remainder of the day.
After Gettysburg got on the board in the opening quarter on a 64-yard Aden Twer touchdown reception, the Bullets added two more touchdowns in the second quarter before the Eagles were able to respond.
Juniata capped an eight-play, 69-yard drive at the 6:56 mark of the second quarter, when Udinski hit Valdiserri on the two-yard pass play for six points. The Eagles' drive was aided by roughing the passer and pass interference penalties on Gettysburg, part of the Bullets' tally of 20 penalties for 206 yards collected on the day. A 27-yard Udinski rush on 2nd-and-10 brought Juniata into the Gettysburg red zone and was the pivotal play to help lead the Eagles to their first touchdown.
A Gettysburg TD late in the second quarter on Ted Delia's seven-yard rush gave the Bullets a 28-6 advantage at the intermission. The Bullets outgained the Eagles 322 yards to 100 yards, but Juniata was aided by Gettysburg's 95 penalty yards in the first half alone.
The Eagles' second score came early in the third quarter, set up by freshman cornerback Nicholas Stubbs (Hagerstown, Md./South Hagerstown) pick off Gettysburg quarterback Kyle Whitmoyer's pass. Stubbs returned the interception 17 yards to the Bullet four-yard line, and Udinski connected with Valdiserri in the endzone on the next play.
Juniata posted its second touchdown of the third quarter with 9:42 remaining in the frame, on senior defensive back Tyler Cottle's (Everett, Pa./Northern Bedford) block of Gettysburg's punt attempt by Rob Pennella from the Bullet 22. Cottle recovered the ball in the end zone, for the Eagles' first TD on a blocked punt since Andy Miller accomplished the feat against Dickinson late in the fourth quarter in 2009.
However Gettysburg managed to score three touchdowns, including two-point conversions on two of the scores, and held a 51-19 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The Eagles tacked on their final score of the game with 9:07 left on the clock, when sophomore running back Zach McCaulley (Bellwood, Pa./Bellwood-Antis) broke into the endzone with a one-yard TD rush for the second rushing touchdown of his career. That play closed a 19-play, 84-yard drive lasting over six minutes â?" Juniata's longest scoring drive since an 89-yard TD drive against Moravian in 2007.
A 33-yard return on the ensuing kickoff left Gettysburg at midfield to start its next drive, and the Bullets closed out the scoring for the day with Nick Ulassin's 26-yard rushing touchdown with 6:47 left to play.
Delia led Gettysburg offensively with 105 yards rushing on 13 carries with three touchdowns, with a pair of pass receptions for 11 yards. He also logged Gettysburg's final touchdown of the third quarter on a 75-yard punt return, giving him four TDs on the afternoon.
Whitmoyer was 9-of-17 through the air for 134 yards, while backup Kody Smith finished with 163 yards passing on a 10-of-15 performance.
Twer was Gettysburg's top receiver, grabbing eight passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns.
Juniata was paced defensively by sophomore linebacker Kevin Gorman (Waverly, N.Y./Waverly Central) with nine total tackles, including eight solo stops, with 3.0 tackles-for-loss of 11 yards and one sack. Freshman safety Keith Stewart (Havertown, Pa./Haverford Township) had eight tackles with one for loss, and recorded his first career interception. Stubbs, corner Andrew Masullo (Bellefonte, Pa./Bellefonte) and defensive lineman David Weiss (Middletown, Md./Middletown) each had six tackles.
Juniata is on the road next week, when it travels to Lancaster, Pa., to face Franklin & Marshall College in a Centennial Conference matchup. Kick-off is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.
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