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Juniata Football Claims First Win

(Posted October 30, 2004)

Senior Paul Evans tied a Juniata record with three interceptions and made several key defensive plays in the final minute to help seal a Juniata win over Lycoming.

Juniata 14, Lycoming 7

Williamsport, Pa.? The Juniata football team forced four second-half turnovers, one of them a 55-yard interception return for a touchdown by Troy Beaver (Bellwood-Antis/Tyrone), broke a 7-7 tie and helped Juniata to a 14-7 victory over Lycoming College in Middle Atlantic Conference action at David Person Field Saturday afternoon.
The win was the first of the season for Juniata, which improved to 1-7 overall and 1-6 in MAC play with the victory. Lycoming dropped to 2-6 overall and 2-5 in the conference.

The victory was Juniata?s first win over Lycoming since the 1987 season, with the only non-Warrior win coming with a tie in 1992. Lycoming had won the previous nine contests between the two programs, and Juniata had not claimed a win at Lycoming since 1974.

Juniata?s defense was the story of the game as the Eagles finished with five interceptions, and held Lycoming without scoring on two Warrior trips inside the Juniata five-yard line.

Senior cornerback Paul Evans (Huntingdon/Huntingdon) matched a Juniata record with three interceptions in the game. The Warriors finished with 279 yards of total offense, but were held to just the seven points.

Neither team could break through in the first quarter. The Warriors took the opening kickoff and drove into Juniata territory. The drive ended with Chris Schrader pushing a 35-yard field goal attempt missed wide right. Lycoming quarterback Phil Mann was attempting to play through a shoulder injury, but struggled in the first quarter and was replaced in the early going. The Warriors would use four different signal-callers in the game.

A 40-yard run from Juniata?s Duane Ehredt Jr. (Bellwood-Antis/Tyrone) brought the ball into Lycoming territory for the first time. But the Warriors held on a fourth-down attempt as Lycoming took possession on the turnover on downs.

Juniata?s defense set-up the first score of the game. Lycoming quarterback David Hall was picked off at the Juniata 48 by Matt Schmidt (South Wester/Spring Grove) and returned into Lycoming territory. Juniata took over and moved the ball to the six. A facemask penalty extended the drive, which Corey Doyle (Southern Huntingdon/Orbinsonia) capped with a 3-yard pass to Jason Koch (Kutztown/Kutztown) for a score. Dan Heinlein (Bishop Carroll/Ebensburg) added the point after, giving Juniata a 7-0 lead.

Making his second career start, Doyle finished the game 8-for-22 for 62 yards and a score. Ehredt fell just shy of the 100-yard mark as he posted 89 yards rushing for Juniata.

On the ensuing possession the home team moved the ball inside the four yard line. Juniata?s defense then held up, stopping four Lycoming plays inside the four to forces the turnover on downs.

The Warriors forced the quick three-and-out, getting the ball back on the punt in good field position. Lycoming again drove inside the five-yard line with less than a minute left in the half. The Warriors were unable to punch into end zone as Juniata kept Lycoming off the scoreboard and went to halftime leading 7-0.

Lycoming swung the momentum on Juniata?s first possession of the second half. Jim Smith picked off Doyle on a third and long giving Lycoming the ball at the Juniata 39. David Smith hit Tim Brown with a completion down to the Eagle one. Smith then plunged in himself to give Lycoming the touchdown. Chris Schrader added the extra point to knot the score at seven just a few minutes into the second half.
After the two teams exchanged punts, Juniata?s defense came up with its second turnover of the game. Beaver picked off Smith in the flat and returned the ball 55 yards for the touchdown. The successful point after gave Juniata a 14-7 lead with 4:50 left in the third quarter.

Lycoming put itself in position for a tying drive when Greg Silenok picked off Doyle and returned the ball to the Juniata 37. The Warriors were given new life when an Evans interception deep in Juniata?s end of the field?which would have been his second of the games?was wiped out with a roughing the passer penalty. It proved to not matter as the drive ended several plays later with Evans picking off his second pass of the game, this time in the end zone, and returned the ball to the Juniata 43.

The Warrior defense held again, forcing a Juniata punt. Evans came up big again, grabbing his third interception of the contest and bringing the ball back to the Lycoming 36.

Lycoming answered right back, with Luke Sterling corralling the eighth interception of the game, and giving the ball back to the home team with less than four minutes remaining in the game.

After a Juniata defensive stop, and the Eagles had worked the clock under 20 seconds left in the game, Lycoming's Matt Murdock broke a 64-yard punt return to bring the ball to the Juniata 24. The Warriors took two shots at the end zone, both of which were broken up, the final one by Evans to seal the win.

Brandon Traugh finished just shy of 100 yards for Lycoming on the ground as he rushed for 97 yards on the game. Hall closed his day 12-for-29 with 144 yards passing and three interceptions. He also rushed for Lycoming?s only score.

Peter Thomas (Mechanicsburg/Mechanicsburg) paced Juniata with 11 tackles in the game. Nick Trionfo (Dundalk/White Marsh, Md.) made seven stops, had a pair of passed defended and earned a sack in his first start of the year. Frederick Wall (Big Spring/Newville) had a pair of quarterback sacks on the day for Juniata.

Tim Hartingh led all players with 12 tackles for the Lycoming defense, with four of his stops coming for a loss.

Juniata will look for its second win of the season next Saturday as the Eagles host MAC opponent King?s.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.