ANNVILLE, Pa. — Grove City's Blaine Miller caught a late
go-ahead 33-yard pass to put his team over top Lebanon Valley,
17-14, on Saturday at Arnold Field.
The Dutchmen fell to 0-2 with another mistake-filled performance, despite a big game by Ben Guiles, who ran for 158 yards and touchdowns, and caught four passes for 58 yards.
Alex Gilchrist keyed the defense with a team-high eight tackles, including three for a loss with a sack, a fumble recovery, and a batted pass.
With two extra points, kicker Brittany Ryan tied the NCAA record for career points by a female kicker, equalling West Alabama's Tonya Butler with 87 career points. Ryan is also now four away from tying the LVC all-time PAT mark of 76.
Miller spurred Grove City's offense, scoring both of their touchdowns, and Craig Bicehouse added a 34-yard field goal for the Wolverines (1-1), who were visiting Annville as part of the PAC-MAC Challenge series.
Guiles opened the scoring with an 18-yard run in the first quarter before Bicehouse hit from 34, and Grove City took the lead on Miller's 13-yard haul from Clayton Hall in the third quarter.
The Dutchmen recaptured the lead when Guiles capped a long drive with a push over the line on the next drive, but the Wolverines took the lead for good when Miller broke loose off a short out to score with 4:12 left in the fourth quarter.
LVC couldn't do anything with their final possession, with a personal foul call negating a solid return by Pete Panichi to push the Dutchmen back to their own 16. It was three-and-out from there as Kevin Greene punted, and Grove City rode out the final 3:13 of the game.
Both sides had trouble holding onto the ball; Grove City lost a Miller fumble on their opening drive to set up LVC's score, and the Dutchmen dropped two of their own, first when Fick bobbled a snap on the Grove City two-yard line that Marcus Chakot grabbed, and then when Alex Kirchner dropped a pass at midfield to start the third quarter.
Like last week, LVC had trouble with penalties, getting hit eight times for 76 yards; Grove City was flagged nine times for 49 yards, including four defensive offsides calls.
Blair Ransom joined Guiles to lead the LVC rushing attack, posting a career game with 77 yards on 15 carries. Fick finished 7-for-17 for 85 yards; his counterpart Hall was 17-for-26 for 205 yards, and ran for 72 more.
LVC hosts Moravian next Saturday.
It was Guiles' sixth career 100-yard game and second in a row over 150 ... He ran for 154 yards last week against Gettysburg ... It was also his second 200+ all-purpose yard game (214 vs. Moravian in 2009) ... Kevin Greene took over punting duties with Colt Zarilla out for the game and did well, booting six times for a 34.5 average, putting three inside the 20 with two touchbacks ... Clayton Hall was knocked out of the game on a hit by Alex Gilchrist in the second quarter, but returned the next series after Zach Gross filled in ... Zach Bleiler blocked a 38-yard field goal attempt by Bicehouse at the end of the first half, which Nick Bowne recovered. The attempt came after the officials added one second back to the clock following a last-ditch pass attempt by Hall ... Bleiler finished with seven tackles, two for a loss ... LVC was just 2-of-11 on third down and 1-for-3 on fourth down ... Grove City only had a chance to return one of LVC's six punts, but Pete Panichi flew in to tackle Butch Kriger for a loss of a yard ... Despite a career-high in yardage, it was the first time in his career that Blair Ransom played in a game and did not score. He had scored a touchdown in each of his previous seven games.