September 15, 2012

Thiel downs Geneva in OT, 21-14

More news about: Thiel

GREENVILLE, Pa. – Thiel place kicker Cody McClelland (Sarver, Pa./Freeport) had no idea what was about to transpire. Neither did tight end Berend Grube (Venetia, Pa./Peters Twp.). The snapper-to-holder exchange for a potential go-ahead field goal in overtime against Geneva College did not go smoothly, and the football bounced gently at the Geneva 12-yard line.
 
It seemed like an unfortunate missed opportunity, but Thiel's luck was about to change.
 
Grube heard the call, "fire, fire, fire," and abandoned his blocking assignment in favor of a short passing route in the Geneva end zone. McClelland picked up the ball, spotted No. 82 and, under heavy pressure lobbed what would count as the game-winning touchdown pass to Grube.
 
Geneva's offense still had an opportunity to tie the score up, but Thiel's defense kept the Golden Tornadoes out of the end zone to put the finishing touches on a 21-14 overtime win Saturday at Alumni Stadium, which broke the team's 24-game losing streak.
 
A celebration ensued with many wiping tears of joy from their eyes as the Tomcats rang the Victory Bell for the first time since Oct. 21, 2009.
 
"I'm really excited for our kids because they hung in there over the course of two seasons that were really tough … this is a great win four our program," said Thiel fourth-year head coach Kurt Reiser.
 
The Tomcats took a 14-0 lead into halftime on second-quarter touchdown runs by Josh Potter (Huntsville, Ala./Chipley) and Andrew Smith (Williamsfield, Ohio/Pymatuning Valley) from 2- and 25-yards out, respectively.
 
Geneva came back in the third quarter and tied up the score, 14-14, on touchdown receptions by Corey O'Patchen (38 yards) and Rocco Colavecchia (10 yards).
 
The Golden Tornadoes lined up for a potential 32-yard game-winning field goal with 23 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, but Bryan Visingardi's kick sailed wide left.
 
Smith connected with Grube for a 16-yard completion on Thiel's first play in overtime. Taylor Fink (Kittanning, Pa./Kittanning) then got the ball down to the Geneva 5-yard line on a pair of runs before Smith's third-down pass in the far corner of the end zone for Nate Blazevich (Munhall, Pa./Steel Valley) fell incomplete.
 
McClelland's field goal attempt turned touchdown pass followed on fourth-and-goal from the Geneva 5-yard line.
 
On their ensuring drive the Golden Tornadoes picked up a first down on runs of 7- and 4-yards by Dylan Jones down to the Thiel 14-yard line, but that's where the drive stopped.  Colavecchia ran for no gain on first down, and Geneva threw three straight incomplete passes to end the game.
 
Thiel's defense combined for nine pass break ups, six tackles for loss and five sacks on the day.
 
The win could be a springboard for the Tomcats (1-2, 1-0 PAC), who entered Saturday's game coming off of two tough losses.
 
"I think it gives us a little bit of confidence moving forward," Reiser said. "The last couple games have been pretty close, and I hope that this win will help us turn the corner."
 
Thiel will host PAC foe Washington & Jefferson at Alumni Stadium Saturday (Sept. 22). Kickoff is slated for 1:30 p.m.

View Saturday's game-winner here: 

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Dubuque 30, at Luther 17
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Monmouth 52, at Lake Forest 6
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St. Thomas 33, at St. John's 21
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at Augsburg 49, Carleton 17
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Bethel 44, at St. Olaf 7
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at Hamline 42, Gustavus Adolphus 40
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at UW-Whitewater 35, Morningside 21
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at Hardin-Simmons 48, Texas Lutheran 38
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at UW-River Falls 42, Southwestern 22
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Simpson 17, at Buena Vista 9
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at St. Scholastica 49, Crown 13
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Cornell 46, at Beloit 41
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at Carthage 27, Augustana 24
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Coe 48, at Nebraska Wesleyan 17
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at Wartburg 56, Finlandia 0
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 10, Elmhurst 6
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Hendrix 42, at Millsaps 14
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Illinois Wesleyan 45, at North Park 10
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at Macalester 34, Grinnell 0
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at Ripon 33, Knox 19
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Illinois College 40, at Lawrence 15
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UW-Oshkosh 77, at Morthland College (Ill.) 0
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Central 42, at Loras 34
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at Geneva 35, Thiel 27
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UW-Eau Claire 40, at Wisconsin Lutheran 14
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St. John Fisher 42, at Brockport 38
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UW-Stevens Point 44, at Adrian 19
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UW-La Crosse 41, at Carroll 7
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at Berry 41, Sewanee 3
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Westminster (Pa.) 38, at Bethany 9
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Ohio Wesleyan 29, at Oberlin 16
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at Tufts 17, Wesleyan 14
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Mount Union 49, at Baldwin Wallace 7
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at Capital 35, Wilmington 21
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at Southwestern Assemblies 23, Austin 17
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Langston at McMurry
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at North Central (Ill.) 42, Millikin 7
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at Chapman 19, Trinity (Texas) 17
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Sep. 24: All times Eastern
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at Thomas More 20, Carnegie Mellon 16
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at Hobart 27, Union 23
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Christopher Newport 17, at TCNJ 0
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at Wittenberg 24, Wabash 14
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Salisbury 35, at Southern Virginia 0
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Albright 20, at Delaware Valley 17
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at Utica 24, Cortland 13
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at Stevenson 54, FDU-Florham 15
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at Franklin 44, Bluffton 38
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Johns Hopkins 30, at Muhlenberg 24
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St. Thomas 33, at St. John's 21
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at UW-Whitewater 35, Morningside 21
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at Hardin-Simmons 48, Texas Lutheran 38
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 10, Elmhurst 6
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UW-Platteville 56, at Lakeland 0
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UW-Oshkosh 77, at Morthland College (Ill.) 0
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Central 42, at Loras 34
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St. John Fisher 42, at Brockport 38
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Mount Union 49, at Baldwin Wallace 7
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at North Central (Ill.) 42, Millikin 7
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