/seasons/2013/contrib/20130905dtzwi9

Eagles Open Anniversary Season at Home

More news about: Juniata

By: Jennifer Jones
Director of Sports Information
jonesj@juniata.edu • juniatasports.net

HUNTINGDON, Pa. - The Juniata College football team opens its 2013 campaign in the comfort of home.  The Eagles play host to Thiel College on Saturday, Sept. 7 at noon in the 40th anniversary year of the 1973 team playing in the inaugural NCAA Division III National Championship.

 

"They are very similar to us," said head coach Tim Launtz of the Tomcats.  "They have a lot of returning starters on both sides of the ball.  They continued to improve throughout the year last year.  I think what it comes down to is that you have two teams who took positive steps last year, so you'll see who's the most improved football team."

 

This will be the seventh meeting of the two programs in a rivalry that dates back to 1921. There has been a significant gap in time since the teams played before last season.  Thiel dominated the early years of the matchup, but Juniata has now won three straight and outscored the Tomcats 47-19.   This game will determine the series leader.

 

Thiel at a Glance
Thiel heads into its fifth season under head coach Kurt Reiser.  The Tomcats went 3-7 last year and tied for fifth in the Presidents' Athletic Conference with a 3-5 record.  After losing just six starters from the 2012 squad, Thiel returns all but one from its starting offense and is expected to be competitive on the attack.

 

Among the returners is All-Pac second team offensive lineman Jason Crystol. He will be protecting senior quarterback Andrew Smith in the pocket.  Smith appeared in all 10 games and amassed nearly 1,400 passing yards.  Returning in the backfield are Josh Potter and Taylor Fink.  Both appeared in all 10 games, with Potter earning the starting job most of last year.  But Fink proved more successful on the gridiron, averaging 4.0 yards per carry and 618 total yards.

 

Seven starters return to the Tomcats defense.  Thiel will have an experienced secondary to rely on in 2013.  They are led by senior free safety Brandon Wolfe.  He led the team with 39 total tackles, 27 solo.  Strong safety Rob Edwards was second in tackles with 26 and recorded an interception and six pass breakups last year.

 

Thiel runs a multiple Pro-I offense and a multiple 4-3 defense.  They have 18 starters returning: eight seniors, five juniors, and five sophomores.

 

Last Meeting
Scott Andrews made a field goal with 4:56 remaining to lift Juniata over Thiel 16-13.  The Eagle defense then held Thiel off the board, allowing just 54 total yards of offense over two possessions for the rest of regulation.  The win broke a season-opener losing streak and helped complete at three-sport sweep of Thiel as men's and women's soccer also won against the Tomcats.  Ward Udinski threw for over 200 yards and ran in the Eagles only touchdown.  Thiel won the ground game rushing for 57 more yards than Juniata.  The Eagle defense picked off Andrew Smith twice and found him in the backfield once for a sack.

 

Keep on Rising
Juniata is coming off of its most successful season in nearly a decade after posting the program's first three-win season since 2003.  In recognition of their progress, the Eagles were pegged to finished seventh in the Centennial Conference preseason poll with 57 points.  This is the first time Juniata has been tabbed higher than last since joining the league in 2007.

 

Staying Close to Home
Head coach Tim Launtz is entering just his third year at the helm of Eagle football.  He is a Huntingdon, Pa native and 1980 Juniata graduate.  Launtz is the 22nd head coach in Juniata's history and the sixth alumnus to guide the program.

 

Felus Named Preseason All-American
Senior Brandon Felus was named a 2013 Preseason All-American by the Beyond Sports Network.  He was the first Eagle under Launtz to be named first-team all-conference and was also recognized as a 2012 Eastern College Athletic Conference All-Star.

 

Four Earn All-Conference Honors in Postseason
The Eagles return all four of their 2012 All-Centennial honorees, three of whom are members of the defense: Felus, linebacker, Kevin Gorman, and defensive lineman Jared Shope.  Gorman is a two-time all-conference selection.  Offensive lineman Josh Gongloff rounded out the Eagles on all-conference teams.

 

Offensive Quick Hit
Juniata returns its entire starting offensive line to protect junior quarterback Ward Udinski.  The captain led the team in passing and rushing yards last year and was ranked 30th nationally in total offense.  Despite losing the veteran receiving group to graduation, Udinski has experience in the backfield to share the load in senior Zach McCaulley.  The running back finished second in rushing yards behind Udinski.

 

Defensive Blitz
The Eagles only lost two members of their nationally ranked defense.  The experienced group will be bringing 15 defensive newcomers up to speed quickly to allow for depth.

 

Special Teams Highlights
Junior Ken Kysor and sophomore Jonah Plymire will be the golden toes for Juniata in 2013.  Kysor will take over primary place kicking duties after the Eagles lost Ken Andrews to graduation.  Plymire will continue to boot the ball for punts.  He finished last season with 1,735 yards and ranked 36th nationally in punting.

 

Follow Your Eagles! Stay up-to-date on your Juniata College Eagles by logging onto www.juniatasports.net.  And don't forget to follow us on twitter (@JuniataEagles) and on Facebook (Juniata Eagles).

Sep. 16: All times Eastern
Final
at Worcester State 42, Fitchburg State 26
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at Ursinus 35, Juniata 28
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Salve Regina 27, at Dean 0
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at Johns Hopkins 37, Moravian 7
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Massachusetts Maritime 34, at Maine Maritime 25
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Wesley 33, at TCNJ 0
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at RPI 31, Western New England 14
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Buffalo State 53, at Morrisville State 48
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at Rochester 14, Alfred State 7
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Stevenson 52, at FDU-Florham 14
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Union 31, at Gallaudet 21
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at Williams 28, Bowdoin 14
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Sewanee 29, at Austin 17
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at Middlebury 30, Wesleyan 27
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at Tufts 35, Hamilton 28
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Salisbury 21, at Kean 13
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at Olivet 37, Aurora 21
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at Amherst 41, Bates 17
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at Trinity (Conn.) 35, Colby 0
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at Franklin and Marshall 43, McDaniel 41
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Montclair State 24, at Southern Virginia 0
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Rowan 41, at William Paterson 14
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Springfield 66, at Mount Ida 20
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UW-Platteville 38, at Hampden-Sydney 29
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DePauw 55, at Hiram 28
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at Alma 45, Benedictine 40
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at Trine 55, Wisconsin Lutheran 7
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at Albion 79, Concordia (Wis.) 7
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Dickinson 24, at Gettysburg 21
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at Wooster 38, Ohio Wesleyan 20
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Thiel 28, at Bethany 13
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LaGrange 39, at Methodist 30
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at Wabash 62, Kenyon 7
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King's 44, at Lebanon Valley 39
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at Martin Luther 42, Iowa Wesleyan 20
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at MIT 31, Endicott 26
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at Alfred 24, Utica 17
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Maryville (Tenn.) 56, at Emory and Henry 46
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Averett 19, at Ferrum 7
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at Catholic 25, Randolph-Macon 20
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Susquehanna 14, at Muhlenberg 11
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at Cortland 31, Hartwick 30
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Brevard 63, at Greensboro 7
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Ithaca 24, at St. Lawrence 13
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at St. Scholastica 48, Westminster (Mo.) 18
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MacMurray 48, at Crown 34
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at Greenville 21, Northwestern (Minn.) 15
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Eureka 48, at Minnesota-Morris 20
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UW-Whitewater 40, at Washington U. 21
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at Widener 34, Misericordia 21
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at Coast Guard 13, Nichols 0
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at Hope 37, Lakeland 35
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Heidelberg 40, at Ohio Northern 21
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Carnegie Mellon 30, at Waynesburg 20
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Mount Union 69, at Marietta 3
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at Centre 52, Hendrix 42
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Albright 21, at Lycoming 17
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Bluffton 32, at Mount St. Joseph 31
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at Franklin 42, Defiance 12
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at Anderson 27, Earlham 16
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SUNY-Maritime 38, at Merchant Marine 31
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Concordia-Chicago 41, at Kalamazoo 29
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at Rose-Hulman 38, Hanover 28
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John Carroll 24, at Baldwin Wallace 21
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at Otterbein 56, Wilmington 28
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Trinity (Texas) 28, at Millsaps 26
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at Buena Vista 39, Central 38
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at Concordia-Moorhead 31, Bethel 7
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St. John's 56, at St. Olaf 7
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Gustavus Adolphus 42, at Augsburg 37
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Coe 35, at Nebraska Wesleyan 25
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Wartburg 40, at Simpson 31
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Elmhurst 23, at North Park 20
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at Huntingdon 41, N.C. Wesleyan 30
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at Hardin-Simmons 55, Louisiana College 10
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UW-River Falls 30, at Missouri Baptist 3
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at Whitworth 53, La Verne 0
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St. Thomas 63, at Carleton 0
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Denison 62, at Allegheny 26
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Lewis and Clark 40, at Pomona-Pitzer 29
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at Wittenberg 34, Oberlin 0
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at Western Connecticut 37, Plymouth State 29
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Washington and Lee 24, at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 14
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Cancelled
Warner at Pacific Lutheran
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Cal Lutheran 28, at Willamette 13
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Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, at Linfield 3
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at George Fox 13, Redlands 10
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at Mass-Dartmouth 51, Westfield State 26
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at Castleton 28, Norwich 14
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at Berry 34, Rhodes 13
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Brockport 38, at St. John Fisher 7
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at WPI 38, Becker 0
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at Adrian 62, Rockford 7
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Frostburg State 33, at Christopher Newport 30
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at Hobart 56, Shenandoah 30
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at Case Western Reserve 42, Grove City 10
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at Davidson 42, Guilford 21
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at Bridgewater 52, The Apprentice School 0
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at Capital 39, Muskingum 28
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at Washington and Jefferson 37, Thomas More 29
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at North Central (Ill.) 26, Illinois Wesleyan 13
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at McMurry 33, Howard Payne 21
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at Dubuque 27, Loras 24
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 37, Carthage 14
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at Texas Lutheran 37, Belhaven 0
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at Carroll 28, Augustana 25
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St. Vincent 31, at Geneva 27
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East Texas Baptist 28, at Southwestern 10
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Cancelled
Pacific at Occidental
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Sep. 16: All times Eastern
Final
Wesley 33, at TCNJ 0
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at Johns Hopkins 37, Moravian 7
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at Alfred 24, Utica 17
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UW-Platteville 38, at Hampden-Sydney 29
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Mount Union 69, at Marietta 3
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John Carroll 24, at Baldwin Wallace 21
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Final
at Hardin-Simmons 55, Louisiana College 10
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Final
St. John's 56, at St. Olaf 7
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Final
at Concordia-Moorhead 31, Bethel 7
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Final
at Whitworth 53, La Verne 0
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Final
St. Thomas 63, at Carleton 0
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Final
at Wittenberg 34, Oberlin 0
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Final
Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, at Linfield 3
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Final
at George Fox 13, Redlands 10
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Final
Brockport 38, at St. John Fisher 7
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Final
Frostburg State 33, at Christopher Newport 30
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Final
at Case Western Reserve 42, Grove City 10
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at Washington and Jefferson 37, Thomas More 29
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 37, Carthage 14
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at North Central (Ill.) 26, Illinois Wesleyan 13
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