Eagles Football Unable To Stop Nationally Ranked Foe
(Posted November 5, 2005)
Delaware Valley 58, Juniata 27
Huntingdon, Pa. ?Delaware Valley College quarterback Adam Knoblauch reached a rare milestone and the overall offensive strength of the eighth-ranked Aggies was too much for the Juniata College football team to overcome despite one its strongest offensive efforts of the season as the Eagles fell to the visitors by a 58-27 score in Middle Atlantic Conference action at Knox Stadium on Saturday. With the victory, Delaware Valley clinches at least a share of the MAC Championship and insured itself the automatic berth in the NCAA Division III Championships.
Juniata fell to 0-9 on the season and 0-8 in conference play, while the Aggies improved to 9-0 and 8-0 in the conference.
Knoblauch notched 420 yards of total offense on the afternoon in the first half and became just the fifth quarterback in NCAA history (all Divisions) to pass for 10,000 yards and rush for 1,000 yards in a career. He upped his career total to 10,223 passing yards and 1,297 rushing yards to join current Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair (Division I-AA Alcorn State), Doug Nussmeier (Division I-AA Idaho), Curt Anes (Division II Grand Valley State) and Adam King (Division III Howard Payne) on the exclusive list.
Knoblauch reached the milestone with 2:56 remaining in the first quarter as he completed a pass over the middle to Joel Foreman an 18-yard gain. The completion was his sixth in as many attempts for 143 yards at the time. Knoblauch?s efforts led to the visitors establishing a new school record with 687 yards of offense. It was also a record-breaking day for receiver Don Marshall as he established a new Delaware Valley record with 251 yards receiving.
While the Aggies were setting records, it was also a productive day for Juniata?s offense as the Eagles produced 376 yards of total offense, and actually outscored the visitors 20-9 in the second half. Duane J. Ehredt Jr., (Bellwood-Antis/Tyrone) rushed for 161 yards on the day, and moved past the 1,000-yard mark for the season.
The Eagles found themselves in a quick hole, as the Aggies scored on their first two possessions. Steve Cook ran in from three yards after Knoblauch engineered a 10-play 75-yard drive. The point after made it 7-0 visitors. After a 59-yard punt from Jesse Leonard (Shade/Johnstown) pinned the visitors deep in their own end, Knoblauch found Marshall for an 89-yard completion, setting up a one-yard scoring run from Rob Snyder. A failed conversion left Juniata trailing 13-0 with 8:46 remaining in the first quarter.
Juniata answered by putting together a methodical 16-play, 65-yard scoring drive, that was capped with a five-yard scoring run from Ehredt Jr. Dan Heinlein?s (Bishop Carroll/Ebensburg) cut the lead to 14-7, with still three minutes left in the quarter.
But Delaware Valley would pull away by scoring touchdowns on its next five possessions, all in the first half. The next score came after Knoblauch collected his milestone on the completion to Foreman. Six plays later, the senior QB capped the drive with a 17-yard scoring run. The Aggies made the two-point conversion to take a 21-7 lead.
It took only one play for the visitors to add to the lead, as Knoblauch found Marshall again, this time for 57 yards and the score. Another successful conversion brought the lead to 28-7.
A Delaware Valley interception continued the Eagles? troubles, as the Aggies took over on Juniata?s 43. Eight plays later Jake Sheffield scored from four yards out, extending the scoring run. It became 42-7 less than three minutes later as John Kiphorn took a pitch on an end round and went untouched from 25 yards out. Knoblauch then concluded the scoring in the half with his second touchdown pass of the day, a 10-yard strike to Marshall with 1:52 remaining.
The Eagles came out in the second half as the far more aggressive team, scoring on its first two possessions of the second stanza. The Eagles took the kick-off and moved 71-yards, highlighted by a 43-yard scamper from Ehredt Jr.. Jay Leonard (Big Spring/Newville) then found Tom Kimmel (South Range/Canfield, Ohio) in the corner for Juniata?s second score.
Juniata?s on-side kick attempt was then successful as the Eagles recovered the loose ball at the Delaware Valley 48. A pair of Leonard completions moved the ball to the 24-yard line, where the freshman QB then connected with Jason Koch (Kutztown/Kutztown) for the Eagles? third score of the day. The successful point made it 49-20 in favor of Delaware Valley.
Juniata?s defense then registered its first stop of the game as Josh Roy (Northern Lebanon/Fredericksburg) intercepted Knoblauch as the Aggies were threatening to add to the lead.
After Juniata was forced to punt, the visitors did add to their advantage as Sheffield broke loose for a 73-yard scoring run before getting tackled at the one. Reserve offensive lineman Matt Reich then scored his first career touchdown by plunging in from the one to add to the lead. Delaware Valley earned its final points when Juniata attempted to punt deep in its own territory, and the high snap sailed out of the back of the end zone for a safety. That made the score 58-20 Delaware Valley wit 12:04 remaining in the game.
Juniata?s defense began finding some answers as the team forced two other turnovers in the second half. Troy Beaver (Bellwood-Antis/Bellwood) intercepted a pass at Juniata?s five-yard line, in the third quarter, and Matt Schmidt (Southwestern/Hanover) forced a fumble that Juniata recovered early in the fourth.
The Eagles added their final score with 4:20 remaining in the game. Leonard collected three completions to three different receivers to move Juniata into scoring territory. Ehredt Jr. then earned the final eight yards on two carries for his second rushing score of the game.
Ehredt Jr. brought his season rushing total to 1,028 yards, which ranks as the fifth-highest single-season total in Juniata history.
Leonard ended up 19-for-36 for 184 yards and a pair of scoring passes. John Boyer (Belleville/Indian Valley) caught a team-high five passes for 53 yards.
Sheffield finished with 114 yards rushing for the Aggies.
Defensively Schmidt paced the Eagles with nine tackles, with Josh Gulley (Dubois/Luthersburg) contributing eight.
John Pursell and Chuck Hodges both had eight tackles for the Aggies.
Juniata will close its season with a road game at FDU-Florham on Saturday. Delaware Valley can clinch the MAC Championship outright with a win in their season finale against Widener.
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