October 12, 2011

Waynesburg at Westminster (Pa.) Game Notes

More news about: Westminster (Pa.)

NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. - The game notes for the Westminster College football team's Homecoming and Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) game vs. Waynesburg on Saturday, Oct. 15 at 1 p.m. are now online. The notes are best viewed in .pdf format by clicking here.

WAYNESBURG UNIVERSITY YELLOW JACKETS
AT
WESTMINSTER COLLEGE TITANS


Saturday, Oct. 15  - 1 p.m.
Harold Burry Stadium - New Wilmington, Pa.
Radio: WWNW-FM 88.9 (www.titanradio.net)
TV: WCN, Replay on Monday at 7 p.m. (www.wcnlive.com)
Live Stats: click here

SCOUTING WESTMINSTER
Westminster (3-2) is 2-1 after three PAC games for the first time since 2003. The Titans enjoy a plus-seven turnover margin and a PAC-best Red Zone defense that allowed just six touchdowns while forcing four turnovers when opponents are inside their own 20-yard line. The Titans more than doubled their season rushing total last week with 296 yards while still ranking eighth in the PAC with 234.4 total yards per game. The defense is rated fifth with 334.0 yards surrendered per game. Junior WR Geno Pasquinelli, a second-team all-PAC pick last year, ranks third in the league this year with 5.6 receptions per game including 28 catches for 283 yards and a team-high five touchdowns. Junior ILB Alex Kernicky ranks third in the PAC with 9.2 tackles per game including 14.5 (29) in the last two games.

SCOUTING WAYNESBURG
Waynesburg (4-1, 4-0 PAC) looks to further distinguish itself as one of only two undefeated PAC teams. The Yellow Jackets returned 17 starters from last year's 6-4 team (4-3 in PAC) including 10 on defense. Waynesburg leads the PAC in total defense (289.8 per game) and it's fifth in offense (338.6). First-year starting senior QB Josh Graham is the reigning PAC Offensive Player of the Week after passing 19-29 for 311 yards and six touchdowns in a 47-33 win over Geneva, but he's averaged 160.2 yards per game with 11 TDs all season. Sophomore RB Bertrand Ngampa ranks second in the PAC with a 77.6 rushing average with five scores.  

TITANS' LAST GAME
In a game that had eight lead changes, Westminster won a Bethany, 30-27, Saturday. The Titans, who entered the game with 140 rushing yards in the first four games, rushed for 296 yards for the most rushing yards since 2004. The Titans also passed for 54 yards, the fewest since 2001. Junior RB John Proano rushed for a career-high 144 yards on 24 carries with a touchdown for the most rushing yards by a Titan since 2008. Sophomore RB Tyler Banks also rushed 13 times for 80 yards and a touchdown. The Titans intercepted Bethany twice on their own 8-yard line including junior LB Nate Moot picking off a pass with 1:18 remaining after Bethany chose to go for the win rather than kick a game-tying field goal on fourth-down-and-goal from the 6-yard line. Junior WR Geno Pasquinelli caught four passes for 35 yards including two touchdowns, the latter a 20-yarder from senior QB Shawn Lehocky with 5:24 remaining for the game's final score. Junior ILB Alex Kernicky led the Titans with 14 tackles.

THE COACHES
Westminster seventh-year head coach Jeff Hand is 25-40 (.385) as the Titans' coach and 62-64 (.492) for his 13-year career, which includes two other head-coaching jobs (Benedictine (Ill.), Waynesburg). A 1992 Clarion graduate, Hand's best season was in 2003 when he guided Waynesburg to the PAC championship and an NCAA playoff appearance with a 9-2 record. Rick Shepas, who replaced Hand at Waynesburg in 2005, is 38-28 (.576) in his seventh year after coaching at Massillon (Ohio) High School. Shepas starred as a player at Youngstown State ('96) and Cardinal Mooney High.

THE SERIES
Westminster leads the all-time series vs. Waynesburg 36-30-3, but the Yellow Jackets have won seven of the last eight games including a 24-23 win last year at Waynesburg. The Titans' lone with during the stretch was a 49-42 overtime victory in 2009 during Waynesburg's last visit to New Wilmington.

Series Started: 1910 (WES won 17-0)
Series Record: WES leads 36-30-3
Current Win Streak: Waynesburg 1
Longest WES Win Streak: 8 (1987-2002)
Longest WAY Win Streak: 6 (1947-52, '03-08)
Largest Margin WES win: 51-0 in 1970
Largest Margin WAY win: 61-7 in 1967
Last Five Meetings: Waynesburg leads 4-1
2010: at Waynesburg 24, Westminster 23
2009: at Westminster 49, Waynesburg 42 (OT)
2008: at Waynesburg 63, Westminster 26
2007: at Waynesburg 54, Westminster 13
2006: Waynesburg 21, at Westminster 9

LAST MEETING
WAYNESBURG, Pa. (Oct. 16, 2010) -- Westminster lost at Waynesburg, 24-23, last year after the Titans nearly came back from a 24-14 deficit with 3:03 remaining. Junior K Trevor Young kicked a 35-yard field goal with 3:03 left and junior QB Shawn Lehocky threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to sophomore WR Geno Pasquinelli with 38 seconds left, but Young's potential game-tying extra point was blocked by Waynesburg's Bryan Gary. Westminster edged Waynesburg in total yards, 330-320, but a lopsided difference came on third down as the Titans were 1-12 compared to Waynesburg at 6-14. Waynesburg QB Brad Dawson was 17-29 passing for 178 yards while also rushing four times for a team-high 37 yards. Lehocky completed 14 of 25 passes for 165 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. He also rushed 19 times for 69 yards. Pasquinelli caught a career-high eight passes for 92 yards and two touchdowns. In making his first-career start, freshman RB Tyler Banks rushed 20 times for 95 yards and the game's first touchdown. Sophomore DB J.J. Nalesnik led the Titans with eight tackles.

FOR STARTERS
Westminster has 13 returning starters, not including senior WR John Baummer who started two years ago. Of those 14 players, one is a fourth-year starter in senior P Andrew Clark and two are third-year starters in junior S Kyle Allen and senior CB Jordon Rooney. The other 11 are second-year starters but there are also five additional players who have started at least one game entering the 2011 season. Rooney, Allen, senior QB Shawn Lehocky and senior RT Adam Fueller are the only returners who started all 10 games last year and Rooney holds the team's longest start streak at 25 games followed by Allen (17) and Fueller (16).

PASSING TO PASQUINELLI
Junior WR Geno Pasquinelli, a second team all-PAC pick last year, ranks third in the PAC with 5.6 receptions per game (28 for 283 yards), second with five receiving touchdowns, and fifth with 56.6 receiving yards per game. Pasquinelli tied a career high with eight receptions (for 65 yards) vs. Lycoming and twice this year he tied a career high with two touchdown receptions (at Grove City and Bethany). Last year, he ranked second in the PAC with 5.3 receptions per game and fifth with 57.1 receiving yards per game despite not starting until the fifth game of the season because of an injury. His career high for receiving yards is 129 (on 6 catches) vs. Bethany last year. Pasquinelli tied a school record in 2010 with a five-game touchdown reception streak and his six total touchdowns led the team. 

ALL IN WITH ALLEN
Junior S Kyle Allen leads the PAC with four interceptions (for 72 yards) and his 0.75 per game average is tied with 12 other players for the ninth most in NCAA Division III. Allen also ranks eighth in the PAC in kick return average (13.9), fourth on the team with 30 tackles and he's tied for the team lead with three pass break-ups. Allen, a second-team all-PAC pick as a return specialist last year, led the PAC and ranked 42nd in the nation with a 24.7 kickoff return average last year. He has nine career interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown last year. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown last year to become the first Titan since two-time All-American Aldridge Jones in 1991 to return an interception and a kickoff for a touchdown in the same season.

LEHOCKY THE LEADER
Senior QB Shawn Lehocky ranks eighth team history with 3,244 career passing yards. Lehocky needs 37 yards to tie Rich Edder (1980-83) for seventh place with 3,281 yards. In four games this year (he missed one with an injury), Lehocky has thrown for 478 yards on 47-84 passing and his 119.5 passing yards per game ranks seventh in the PAC. Lehocky ranked fifth in the PAC last year with 172.6 passing yards per game (155-293 for 1,726, 14 TDs, 16 Ints.). He's also a rushing threat. As a platoon quarterback in 2009, he rushed for 446 yards and seven TDs including a career-high 112 yards and a career-high two rushing scores vs. Waynesburg to become the team's first-ever quarterback to rush for 100 yards in a game. Lehocky's other career highs are 256 passing yards (Saint Vincent, 2010), 20 completions (Grove City, Thomas More, 2010), 40 pass attempts (Grove City, 2010), 3 passing touchdowns (Bethany, 2010; Waynesburg, 2009), 3 interceptions (Grove City, 2010) and 19 rushing attempts (Waynesburg, 2010).

LIKE A PRO
Junior RB John Proano ranks sixth in the PAC with 50.4 rushing yards per game (80 rushes for 252 yards and 3 TDs) after he rushed for a career-high 144 yards on 24 carries with a touchdown at Bethany. This marked Proano's fourth career 100-yard rushing game and the first this season as he became one of only six Titans since 1992 with at least four 100-yard rushing games. The others are Scott Froelich (24; 2001-04), Andy Blatt (23; 1993-94, '96), Denny Flora (16; 1995-98), Nick McKolosky (12; 2006-09) and John Ciavarra (4; 2000). Proano's 144 rushing yards vs. Bethany were also the most by a Titan since McKolosky rushed for 146 vs. Saint Vincent in 2008. Proano's other career highs are 32 attempts (for 125 yards) at Geneva in 2010 and two rushing touchdowns vs. Hiram this year.

ALEXANDER THE GREAT
Junior ILB Alex Kernicky's career-high 15 tackles vs. W&J and 14 at Bethany last week gave him 29 stops for the most tackles by a Titan in consecutive games since All-American LB Craig Mills posted 32 tackles in consecutive games in 1996, which was before Westminster joined the NCAA with a more restrictive definition of the tackle statistic. Kernicky's 15 tackles vs. W&J were the most by a Titan since Tom Geraghty had 17 against Bethany last year. Kernicky's team-high 46 tackles for the season (3.5 for loss, 1 sack) ranks third in the PAC. Kernicky is a first-year starter who was named the PAC Defensive Player of the Week after the W&J game.

OH HENRY!
Sophomore K Zac Henry leads the PAC and ranks 23rd nationally with 1.2 field goals per game. He is a perfect 6-for-6 including two at Grove City and a season-long 38-yarder at Bethany. A first-year starter, Henry is 7-for-11 for his career including a 44-yarder at Geneva last year. 

IMPROVING DEFENSE
Westminster lost five defensive starters from last year's team including three linebackers that each ranked in the top five in the PAC in tackles per game. Despite this, the Titans have improved. After five games in 2011 compared to the first five games of 2010 played against the same five opponents, Westminster has held opponents to 58 fewer points (173-115) and 356 fewer yards (2026-1670).

TURNING THE TIDE
The biggest difference between the 2010 Titans and the 2011 Titans: turnover margin. Westminster's +7 turnover margin (+1.4 per game) ranks 25th in the nation and it is second only to Thomas More (+8, +1.6) in the PAC. The Titans are one of 17 teams in the nation with at least eight fumble recoveries and they are second in the PAC with seven interceptions. Last year, the Titans absorbed a minus-16 turnover margin which ranked last in the PAC and 226th out of 236 Division III teams. In this year's season opener vs. Hiram, Westminster tied a school record with five fumble recoveries. Only two other times in team history have the Titans recovered five fumbles: Nov. 18, 1989 in a 29-9 home playoff win over Georgetown (Ky.) and Nov. 15, 1986 in a 14-7 loss at Clarion.

BETHANY GAME AWARD-WINNERS
Junior RB John Proano was voted SAAC Titan Athlete of the Week by the Westminster Student-Athlete Advisory Committee for the Bethany game. The Westminster coaching staff also released its weekly awards for the Bethany game week: Scout Team Players of the Week went to freshman RB Tre Sims (offense) and freshman DB Gino Mariano (defense). Sophomore K Zac Henry got the "Mental Attitude Award" while junior OLB Aaron Nauer made the "Big Hit" and sophomore ILB Nate Moot made the "Big Play." The MVPs of the game went to senior P Andrew Clark (special teams), senior DE Ryan Brucker (defense), sophomore RB Tyler Banks (co-offense), and Proano (co-offense). 

WESTMINSTER ONE-LINERS

  • Westminster has won nine of its last 11 Homecoming games with the only losses coming last year vs. Bethany (47-39) and in 2005 vs. Thomas More (17-3).
  • Westminster is 11-8 in its last 19 home games and 5-14 in its last 19 road games.
  • Westminster is 2-1 after three PAC games for the first time since 2003 when started 3-1 before losing to a Jeff Hand-coached Waynesburg team that won the PAC title.
  • The Titans are 3-2 after five games for the first time since 2008 when they went 5-5 by winning all of their home games and losing all of their road games.
  • Westminster is seeking its first winning season since 2002 as it looks to avoid its only stretch of three straight losing seasons since 1948-50.
  • Senior punter Andrew Clark is ranked second in the PAC with 38.8 yards per punt.
  • Sophomore DE Sean Christofferson ranks second in the PAC with 0.4 forced fumbles per game (2).
  • Senior DE Ryan Brucker is tied for third in the PAC with 3.5 sacks and he's sixth in the league and second on the team with 6.0 tackles for loss.
  • Junior LB Derrick Orloski had two sacks for seven yards vs. Hiram marking the seventh time since 2005 that a Titan player had two or more sacks in a game.
  • Westminster's 296 rushing yards vs. Bethany was the most by the Titans since they had 306 in a 41-22 win over Hiram in 2004 and the Titans' 54 passing yards vs. Bethany were the fewest since the Titans threw for 34 in a 12-7 win at Geneva in 2001.
  • Westminster is 12-4 since 2007 when it has a player rush for 100 yards or more in a game.
  • Since 2004, the Titans are 11-1 when they rush for 200 yards (only loss was last year's season finale at Geneva).
  • Sophomore RB Tyler Banks' 95 rushing yards at Waynesburg last year were the most by a Westminster freshman since Scott Froelich, the school's second all-time rushing leader, rushed for 198 yards at Waynesburg in 2001.
  • Westminster's 20-16 loss to W&J was the first time since 2003 that the Titans lost to W&J by fewer than 25 points and it was the closest Westminster-W&J game since the Titans last beat the Presidents, 19-17, in 2000. 
  • Westminster's four captains as voted by the players for the 2011 season are senior DL Ryan Budziszewski, senior OL Adam Fueller, senior QB Shawn Lehocky, a second year captain, and senior CB Jordon Rooney.
  • Since Westminster beat Geneva, 12-7, in 2001 with 53 total yards, two of the Titans' three lowest offensive games have occurred this season (176 vs. Hiram 9/3/11; 153 vs. Thiel 10/22/05; 89 vs. Lycoming 9/10/11).
  • Lycoming (4-1­) is second to Mount Union for the top defense in the nation, holding opponents to 173.6 yards per game. 
  • The Titans held Hiram to just 188 total yards, the fewest against any team since they held Hiram to 107 yards in a 38-7 win in 2005.
  • Westminster was picked eighth in the 2011 PAC preseason poll and three-time defending champion Thomas More is once again the favorite.
  • Westminster's returning all-PAC players from 2010 are junior WR Geno Pasquinelli, junior S Kyle Allen (as a returner specialist) and junior OLB Aaron Nauer, all of which earned second-team honors.

1981 and 1992 REUNIONS
Westminster will recognize its 1981 and 1992 undefeated football teams at halftime of its Homecoming game vs. Waynesburg. The 1981 team, coached by Joe Fusco, went 9-0 in the regular season and after beating Anderson (Ind.), 21-6, in the NAIA national playoffs, it lost to Concordia (Minn.), 23-17, in the national semifinals. The Titans beat Waynesburg, 14-0, that season. The 1992 team, coached by Gene Nicholson, also went 9-0 in the regular season with a playoff win at home over Friends, 28-0, and a second-round loss at home to Findlay, 13-7. There are two NFL connections with these two teams, although they won't be at the reunion this year. The 1981 team was quarterbacked by Rich Dalrymple, who is now the public relations director for the Dallas Cowboys. The 1992 team's leading tackler was Matt Raich who is currently the linebackers coach with the Arizona Cardinals. A complete listing of attendees will be available in the press box on game day.

TITAN TRADITION
Westminster has a 71% winning percentage since 1952 (401-159-10), including 47 winning seasons, 11 undefeated regular seasons, and six national championships (NAIA Division II 1970, '76, '77, '88, '89, and '94). Westminster has an all-time record of 575-403-54 (.583) and its 575 wins rank ninth with amongst current NCAA Division III programs. Westminster also has four representatives enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind. They include QB Harold Davis (1953-56) in the Class of 2004, coach Joe Fusco (1972-90) in the Class of 2001, OG/LB Larry Pugh (1961-64) in the Class of 1998, and coach Harold Burry (1952-71) in the inaugural non-NCAA Division I Class of 1996.

TITANS ON THE RADIO
All Westminster football games, home and away, are carried live on WWNW 88.9 FM throughout Lawrence County at 4,000 watts and live and archived on the Internet at titanradio.net and westminster.edu/athletics. Calling the action will be Dr. Dave Barner on play-by-play, along with Westminster senior Marshall Cupelli as color analyst. New for the 2011 season, fans can listen to broadcasts on their smart phones or mobile devices by downloading a free application online at tunein.com/mobile. Once linked, listeners can access Titan Radio by typing "WWNW" or "Titan Radio" in the application search box and those who live locally can already see the station under the local radio tab.

TITANS ON TV
The Westminster Cable Network (WCN) will telecast all home games live on television and on an online video stream at wcnlive.com with archived games available online. All games, home and away, will be televised on a tape-delay basis on Mondays at 7 p.m. Games can be seen on Armstrong Cable (Channel 72 (basic) in New Wilmington; Channel 204 in Grove City, Mercer and Slippery Rock -- basic-only users in that area tune to 92-12), and on Comcast Cable (Channel 183 in Lawrence County). Westminster senior Bradford Arick will call the play-by-play with former Titan football coach Scott Renninger for home games. Head coach Jeff Hand also appears on the WCN show "Coaches Corner" that airs Thursday and Friday evenings at 7 p.m.

TITANS ON THE BLOG
Senior QB Shawn Lehocky writes a weekly diary that can be found on the Titan Sports Blog at westminster.edu/athletics/blog.cfm.

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