WEBCAST / LIVE STATS / GAME NOTES
DEFIANCE, Ohio - Defiance College will take the field on Saturday at Coressel Stadium looking to draw even in conference play with a victory over Earlham College. A win would boost DC to 2-2 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action and put the Jackets back into contention for their sixth top-three finish in the last seven seasons.
PINK OUT - DC will be hosting a 'Pink Out' on Saturday, in an effort to help raise money and awareness for the fight against breast cancer. All proceeds will go towards the Susan G. Komen For The Cure Foundation.
SCOUTING DEFIANCE - DC snapped a four-game skid last week with a 23-13 win at MSJ. The Jackets appear to have figured out the running game and have ran the ball for four touchdowns and an average of 186.7 yards per game over the past three outings.
SCOUTING EARLHAM - The Quakers will look to right the ship, after suffering a 62-0 loss on its home turf against Hanover to fall to 0-6 one week ago. Earlham has been outscored by an average of 29.4 points per game and ranks last in the HCAC with only 43.8 rushing yards per game.
LAST MEETING - The first-ever HCAC clash between Defiance and Earlham resulted in a 33-0 victory for DC at Earlham on October 16 of 2010. The Jackets used a 100-yard interception return from Kyle Longsdorf to break open a scoreless tie early into the second quarter and never looked back. Tony Sierra added a pick of his own and returned a punt 57 yards for a touchdown in the lopsided affair. The shutout was Defiance's first since blanking Adrian by a 10-0 margin in 2006.
SERIES HISTORY - Defiance and Earlham have met 18 times on the gridiron, with the Yellow Jackets owning a 12-6 advantage in the all-time series. DC is 1-0 against the Quakers in HCAC meetings.
LAST TIME OUT - Defiance scored a touchdown on offense, defense and special teams, en route to picking up its first victory of the season last Saturday. The all-around team effort by the Yellow Jackets helped to secure a 23-13 win at Mount St. Joseph. Tony Sierra opened the scoring with an 84-yard punt return for a score, before Rick Powell rushed for a 22-yard strike and Gregg Pickett sealed the win with a 32-yard interception return to the end zone late in the fourth quarter. Spencer Saunders added a 23-yard field goal with a pair of point-after attempts, while Kyle Keegan and Chrys Killebrew joined Pickett in collecting a trio of interceptions in the triumph.
SIERRA EARNS HCAC AND D3FOOTBALL.COM HONORS - DC's Tony Sierra was hailed as the HCAC Special Teams Player of the Week on Monday, and was named to the D3football.com National Team of the Week on Wednesday for his efforts in the Jackets' 23-13 victory at MSJ. The junior strong safety set a DC record with an 84-yard punt return for a score and added four tackles, one stop for lost yardage and a pass breakup.
JACKETS IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS - DC's Tony Sierra and Matt Oliver enter play on Saturday ranked among the top-30 players in the nation in punt return average and punting average. Sierra is ranked eighth in the nation by averaging 20.2 yards per punt return, while Oliver's average punt of 39.2 yards is good for 30th.
JACKETS IN THE HCAC RANKINGS - Along with Tony Sierra leading the HCAC in punt returns and Matt Oliver ranking third in punts, the Jackets have Brian Mircovich ranking sixth in the league with 4.5 catches per game and Josh Slayton ranking sixth with five passes defended this season.
JENSEN TAGGED AS INTERIM HEAD COACH - Defiance College announced the resignation of head coach Rob Taylor on Tuesday and named defensive coordinator, Nate Jensen, as the interim head coach effective immediately. Jensen is in his third season on staff at DC and was a starter for the Jackets during the 2001 HCAC Championship run. Tuesday marked the end of Taylor's 14-year stint with the Purple and Gold, in which he had served as the head coach for the past nine seasons. During that time, Taylor became the program's all-time wins leader and guided the Jackets to a top-three finish in the HCAC in five of the last six campaigns.
AROUND THE HCAC - One week after the road teams posted a 4-0 record in HCAC matchups, Franklin, Rose-Hulman, Defiance and Bluffton will look to reverse the trend by defending their home turf. Key games include the Grizzlies hosting Manchester and MSJ traveling to Rose-Hulman.
ONLINE WEBCASTS - Defiance College would like to thank Hubbard Company, Mark Moats Ford, Scotty's, City Beverage Company and Benedict's Pro Vending Solutions for their continued support of the Yellow Jacket Sports Network in 2011-2012. Each of DC's six home football games in 2011, along with the road games at Franklin and Anderson will be broadcast live at www.DefianceAthletics.com/video. Past broadcasts will be archived and will also be available by going to that link.
PARTNER UP! - Defiance College Athletics is offering an opportunity for you and your business to team up with the Yellow Jackets to provide exposure for your company, while supporting DC Athletics and the Yellow Jacket Sports Network. By teaming up with the Jackets, businesses will have their corporate logo placed on www.DefianceAthletics.com, which nets an average of 450,000 page views per month from DC students, parents, alumni and fans from in and around the region and across the nation. The partnership will also benefit student-athletes from all 21 varsity sports at Defiance College by helping to create a better collegiate experience for them all. To learn more about this exciting new opportunity with DC Athletics, please contact Seth Mikel at 419-783-2566 or firstname.lastname@example.org.