Spartans Look to Get Back to Winning Ways at Denison

More news about: Case Western Reserve

Case Western Reserve Spartans at Denison Big Red
Saturday, September 24, 2011 - 1:00 p.m.
Deeds Field - Piper Stadium - Granville, Ohio

LIVE AUDIO: http://tv.case.edu/athletics
(Dave Wilson, play-by-play; Ed Daugherty, color)

LIVE VIDEO: http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/denison.portal#

LIVE STATS: http://live.denison.edu/athletics/mens/football/xlive.htm

Download the complete Spartan Games Notes in .pdf format by clicking HERE.


The Case Western Reserve University Spartans look to get back to their winning ways at Denison University on Saturday, September 24 at Deeds Field - Piper Stadium in Granville, Ohio. The Spartans are coming off of a bye week after falling to 1-1 for the season with a 17-7 loss to the University of Rochester (N.Y.) on Sept. 10. Denison is 2-1 following a 42-14 victory versus Hiram College last Saturday, Sept. 17. Kickoff is set for 1:00 p.m.


The Spartans and Big Red have met 25 times on the gridiron with CWRU holding a 17-7-1 lead in the all-time series. Case has won six consecutive meetings and 10 of the last 11 overall, including a 37-7 home victory in 2010. The first-ever meeting between the schools resulted in a 45-13 Spartan victory at home in 1984. Denison's last win in the series came in 2004 by a score of 36-21 in Granville.


Case Western Reserve is coached by Greg Debeljak, who is in his eighth season in 2011 with a 53-23 (.697) record. Debeljak led the Spartans to three consecutive undefeated (10-0) regular seasons from 2007-09 with back-to-back-to-back NCAA postseason appearances and UAA titles. Since the beginning of the 2007 season, Case Western Reserve has posted an outstanding overall record of 40-5, earning Debeljak and his staff the UAA Coaching Staff of the Year award for three straight seasons (2007-09). In addition, Case has been ranked in the AFCA top 25 in each of the past four seasons (2007-10).

Denison is coached by Jack Hatem, who is in his second season with an overall record of 6-7. Hatem became Denison's 20th head coach in the 121-year history of Big Red football in March of 2010. He had spent the previous five seasons at Denison as an assistant coach, serving as defensive coordinator for the final three seasons of that stint. Prior to coming to Denison, Hatem spent 13 years as a high school football head coach. He also served three seasons as the head baseball coach at his alma mater, The University of Rio Grande.


The Spartans improved to 3-0 in 2010 and stretched their regular season win streak to 34 games with a 37-7 victory on Heritage and Fireworks Night at Case Field on September 25, 2010. Running back Derek Bush rushed for 62 yards and a career-high three touchdowns. Quarterback Joey Baum completed 21-of-30 pass attempts for 248 yards and a score and wide reciver Zach Homyk hauled in seven receptions for 83 yards. Defensively, current senior tackle Dale English (Middleburg Heights, Ohio/Holy Name) totaled four tackles, including three for loss, two sacks and two pass break-ups. Denison was led offensively by WR Lucas Graham with five receptions for 85 yards. The Big Red defense was paced by cornerback Pat Effinger with a game-high eight tackles.


Through two games, the Spartans average 15.5 points, 114 yards rushing, 139 yards passing and 253 total yards. Case opponents average 12 ppg, 108 yards rushing, 258 yards passing and 366 total yards per game. The Spartans have a +1 turnover margin after checking in at +11 last season.


Offensively, junior quarterback Erik Olson (Bethel Park, Pa./Bethel Park) has completed 29-of-53 passes for 278 yards with thee interceptions. Freshman running back Manny Sicre (Miami, Fla./Belen Jesuit Prep) has a team-high 199 yards on 26 carries (7.7 ypc) with a touchdown. Sicre also has a team-high nine receptions for 52 yards. Sophomore running back Kenny Riordan (Spring Grove, Ill./Richmond-Burton) has 80 yards rushing on 20 carries (4.0 ypc). Senior wide receiver Bryan Metlesitz (North Royalton, Ohio/North Royalton) has seven receptions for a team-high 74 yards.

Defensively, junior linebacker Ryan Ferguson (Wheaton, Ill./St. Francis) has a team-high 22 tackles, including three for loss, with an interception and fumble recovery for a touchdown. Senior linebacker Jacob Adams (Cincinnati, Ohio/Princeton) is second on the team with 20 tackles and is tied for the team-lead with 1.5 sacks. Senior defensive end Richard Doolin (Bethel Park, Pa./Bethel Park) has 14 stops with a team-high six tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks.


Through three games, Denison averages 33.3 points, 206 yards rushing, 217.7 yards passing and 423.7 total yards per game. Big Red opponents average 12.7 points, 60.3 yards rushing, 186.3 yards passing and 246.7 total yards per game. The Big Red has a -1 turnover ratio and four blocked kicks through three games.


Offensively, junior QB Max Paulus has completed 53-of-82 passes (64.6%) for 588 yards with nine TDs and two INTs. Paulus also has 136 yards rushing on 21 carries. Junior RB Sam Fioroni, this week's North Coast Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Week, has rushed for 443 yards on 57 carries (7.8 ypc) with two rushing TDs and one receiving score. Senior WR Braden Layer has 15 receptions for 232 (15.5 ypc) and classmate Lucas Graham has 11 catches for 105 (9.5 ypc) with three TDs. Junior RB Steven Lilley has three touchdown combined, with one on the ground and two in the air.

Defensively, junior DB Alex Sycher has a team-high 24 tackles, including two for loss, with four pass break-ups. Senior LB Adam Frudden has 20 tackles, with three for loss, an interception and a blocked kick. Junior DL Lane Hartfield has 13 tackles, including six for loss, with 2.5 sacks, a fumble recovery and a blocked kick.


Three-time All-UAA senior defensive tackle Dale English (Middleburg Heights, Ohio/Holy Name) has led the team in sacks and tackles for loss in each of the past two seasons. In 2010, he totaled 64 tackles, including 13 for loss, with nine sacks. The D3Football.com All-North Region selection also posted a stretch of seven straight games with at least a half-sack. Through two games in 2011, English has 12 tackles, including three for loss, with a sack, a pass break-up and a fumble recovery.


With starting hero Michael Fioramonti (Loxahatchee, Fla./Seminole Ridge) out with an injury during the John Carroll game, junior linebacker Ryan Ferguson (Wheaton, Ill./St. Francis) has moved from his traditional inside linebacker spot and more than adequately filled in. In two games, Ferguson has posted 22 tackles, including three for loss, with an interception and fumble recovery for a touchdown.


During its past 20 road games dating back to 2007, CWRU has compiled an overall record of 19-1.


The number of consecutive regular season victories that Case Western Reserve posted from November 4, 2006 until October 30, 2010.

Maintenance in progress.
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Mount Union 43, at UW-Oshkosh 40
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, Brockport 0
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Dec. 15: All times Eastern
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@ Salem, Va.
Video Box Score Recap Photos