(Posted October 23, 2004)

Wilkes 49, Juniata 21

Edwardsville, Pa.? The Juniata College football team posted a season-high 455 yards of total offense, but the Eagles could not overcome a 42-point first half as Juniata fell to Wilkes University 49-21 in Middle Atlantic Conference action at Ralston Field Saturday afternoon.

Wilkes improved to 4-3 overall and 4-2 in the MAC, while Juniata dropped to 0-7 on the year and 0-6 in MAC play.

Freshman quarterback Corey Doyle (Southern
Huntingdon/Orbisonia) was 18-for-31 with 287 yards passing and a touchdown, while also running for a score in his first career start. Duane Ehredt Jr. (Bellwood-Antis/Tyrone) added a career-high 167 yards rushing and a touchdown as Juniata topped its previous best yardage total of the season by 165 yards.

Yet while Juniata was moving the ball themselves Wilkes piled up 413 yards of total of offense in the first half, as the Colonels scored on their first six possessions of the game. Brett Trichilo rushed for 208 yards and two scores in the first half, which moved him into sixth place on the NCAA Division III career rushing list. Wilkes also moved the ball through the air as freshman quarterback Al Karaffa finished the game 13-fo-15 passing for 268 yards and three touchdowns. Wilkes finished the game with 595 yards of total offense.

The Colonels wasted little time getting on the scoreboard, taking the opening kickoff and putting together a four-play 71-yard drive. Jake Remmel capped the drive with a seven yard scoring run to put Wilkes in front 6-0. The point after attempt from Ryan Yurewicz was good, giving Wilkes an early 7-0 cushion.

The Wilkes defense created the next scoring chance. After completing his first pass in his first career start, Doyle was sacked by Mike Bolsar forcing a fumble which Wilkes recovered at the Juniata 25. Trichilo promptly broke outside on the first play after the turnover, scampering 25 yards to the end zone. The point after made the score 14-0 Wilkes with the clock showing 11:59 in the first quarter.

Wilkes continued to move the ball in the first quarter. After a Juniata three and out, a pair of completions from Karaffa moved the ball to the Juniata six. Trichilo rumbled in from there, notching his second score to cap a five-play, 57-yard drive. The point after put Wilkes in front 21-0.

Juniata?s offense threatened on the next possession. Doyle hit John Boyer (Belleville/Indian Valley) with a 30-yard completion. Doyle then carried the ball himself to the Wilkes 14, and a personal foul moved the ball to the seven. But Wilkes kept the Eagles off the scoreboard, as Adam Mihalko blocked Juniata?s field goal attempt to preserve the lead.

Wilkes then quickly struck for its fourth score of the first quarter. Karaffa hit Stephen Burgette with a 67-yard pass and run that ended with Burgette in the end zone. Another successful point after from Yurewicz made the score 28-0.

The second quarter started much like the first as Wilkes had its fifth scoring drive come with 13:50 showing on the clock. Karaffa notched his second scoring pass of the day, finding Jim Jordan for a 24-yard scoring pass. The successful point after made the score 35-0 in favor of the home team.

The scoring continued as Wilkes marched 62 yards on its next possession. Trichilo broke a long run to set-up a four-yard scoring run for Kyle Gallagher which made the score 41-0. Wilkes added the point after, bringing the lead to 42-0.

Juniata threatened later in the second. Duane Ehredt, Jr. (Bellwood-Antis/Tyrone) broke a 65-yard run, the longest of his career to bring the ball to the Wilkes five. But the Colonels defense stiffened, with Bryan Vivaldo intercepting a second down pass in the end zone to keep the Eagles off the scoreboard.

After forcing its first three and out of the game, Juniata got the ball back and promptly recorded its first touchdown. Doyle hit Jason Koch (Kutztown/Kutztown) for a 29-yard scoring strike to complete a four-play 51-yard drive. Dan Heinlein (Bishop Carroll/Ebensburg) added the extra point to cut the lead to 42-7. That would be the score as the two teams went to the locker room for halftime.

The offense continued for Wilkes in the second half. Karaffa tossed his third touchdown pass of the game, hitting Kevin Carroll with a five-yard scoring toss on Wilkes? first possession of the second half. The point after made the score 49-7 in favor of the Colonels.

Juniata?s offense answered back in the third with a scoring drive of its own. Doyle hit Koch on a fourth and 15 completion to extend the drive. Then Ehredt dove in from four yards out for Juniata?s second score. The point after made the score 49-14 in favor of the Colonels.
Koch had a career-high 108 yards receiving on the game, while Boyer caught six passes for 95 yards.

The Eagles added their third touchdown with 3:03 remaining. Doyle hit Lance Tippett (Altoona/Altoona) with a long completion to bring the ball to the one yard-line. Doyle then took it in from the one to score his first career rushing touchdown. The PAT from Heinlein gave the final margin of 49-21 Wilkes.

Matt Pizzaro caught a team-high three passes for Wilkes, while Burgette had the most receiving yards with 67.

Defensively, Bryon Latterner (Penn Cambria/Gallitzin) led Juniata with eight tackles. Paul Evans (Huntingdon/Huntingdon), Peter Thomas (Mechanicsburg/Mechanicsburg) and D.J. Dunmire (Camp Hill/Camp Hill) all had seven stops for the Eagles. Frederick Wall (Big Spring/Newville) had two tackles for a loss and a sack on the game.

Rob Sutjak paced Wilkes with six tackles. The Colonels finished with five sacks on the day.

Juniata will return to action next Saturday as the Eagles play at Lycoming in their final road game of the season.


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