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Juniata gridders fall to Johns Hopkins, 48-0

(Posted October 30, 2010)

BALTIMORE, Md. -- Juniata College led in the takeaways department against Johns Hopkins, but its 179 yards of offense to Hopkins' 582 yards proved to be more than the Eagles could overcome in a 48-0 loss to the Blue Jays in a Centennial Conference football matchup at Homewood Field.

Juniata (0-8, 0-8 Centennial) got 59 yards on the ground from freshman tailback Zach McCaulley (Bellwood, Pa./Bellwood-Antis), as well as 106 yards through the air off the arm of freshman quarterback Gino Ramires (Johnstown, Pa./Richland). Ramires completed 16 of his 31 pass attempts with just one interception, and hooked up with wide receiver Julian Valdiserri (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mt. Lebanon) on eight of those completions for 69 yards.

Johns Hopkins (5-3, 5-2 Centennial) scored on its first five possessions, including a five-play, 56-yard drive off the opening kickoff capped by a six-yard touchdown pass from Blue Jay quarterback Hewitt Tomlin to Sam Wernick.

Tomlin and Wernick hooked up two more times in the first half for touchdowns. First on a four-yard scoring play with 9:04 remaining in the first quarter that made the score 14-0 for the Blue Jays, then again early in the second half on a 56-yard pass play that extended the Hopkins lead to 28-0.

Hopkins running back Scott Barletta scored on a one-yard TD rush with 1:52 remaining in the first quarter for the Blue Jays' third touchdown of the game, concluding a 10-play, 66-yard drive. Alex Lachman closed out Johns Hopkins' first half scoring with a 22-yard field goal with 8:49 showing on the second quarter clock.

After a scoreless third quarter, a 36-yard blocked punt return by the Blue Jays' Adam Schweyer at the 12:21 mark of the fourth put Hopkins in front 38-0, and a 40-yard Lachman field goal barely six minutes later advanced the Jays' lead to 41-0.

A 21-yard touchdown rush by the Blue Jays' J.D. Abbott with 41 seconds remaining in the game closed out the scoring for the afternoon.

Juniata's best chance to break onto the scoreboard came in the second quarter, with the Eagles trailing 31-0 following Lachman's first field goal.

A 24-yard kickoff return by Kevin Peoples (Forestville, Md./Archbishop Carroll) gave Juniata a good jumping off point at its own 34-yard line, and a 15-yard roughing the passer call on third-and-11 kept the drive alive for the Eagles. Juniata broke into Hopkins territory on a 20-yard Ramires completion to Valdiserri. Four plays later, McCaulley picked up a much-needed yard on fourth-and-one at the Hopkins 22 to keep Juniata moving down the field.

On the next play, Ramires' pass attempt into the endzone was picked off by the Jays' Sam Eagleson, ending the drive in Juniata's only turnover of the afternoon.

Juniata safety Chris Beall (Blue Bell, Pa./Wissahickon) returned the favor on Hopkins' ensuing drive, picking off a Tomlin pass in the Juniata endzone and returning back to the Eagle seven-yard line with 27 seconds left in the first half.

Tomlin finished with 316 yards passing, completing 19 of 27 attempts, and hit Wernick eight times for 149 yards. Running back Gary Sharp rushed 12 times for 50 yards while Abbott had a team high 72 yards rushing, but nine different Blue Jays carried the ball for Hopkins and the Jays finished with 216 yards total rushing.

Beall and freshman linebacker Kevin Gorman (Waverly, N.Y./Waverly Central) led the Juniata defense with 11 tackles each, with Gorman leading all defensive players with six solo stops. Gorman also logged his first career interception, a pick of a Tomlin pass at the Juniata 38 with 5:06 remaining in the third quarter.

Juniata returns home for its final two games, starting with next Saturday's final Centennial Conference clash of the season against Dickinson College. Kick-off at Knox Stadium is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.

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