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Storm look to snap three-game skid Saturday against Loras

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The Storm are looking to put a three-game losing streak behind them and pick up their first Iowa Conference win of the season when it hosts Loras on Saturday. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. from Buxton Stadium.

Ethan Calvert, Tyler Kenny and the running game hope to get on the board early and control time of possession, a winning recipe in the Storm's first three games of the season. The Duhawks have one of the top wide receivers in the league in Nate Even, who will look to expose Simpson's secondary. First-year head coach Steve Helminiak relies on a rookie quarterback in Robert Kelly, who will make his third start on Saturday.

 

Matchup

2014 Loras Duhawks

2014 Simpson Storm

 

Game Information

Kickoff

  • Buxton Stadium, Indianola, Iowa – 1 p.m.

Watch Live

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Game Notes

Inside the series

  • Saturday marks the 36th meeting between Loras and Simpson in a series that dates back to 1925.
  • Simpson leads the all-time series 27-8, including a 15-2 mark in Indianola.
  • Simpson has won four straight games in the series, including a 27-10 win in Dubuque last season.
  • Simpson has won 13 straight home games in the series, the last loss coming in 1986.
  • Simpson is 5-1 against Loras under Jim Glogowski.
  • The two teams first met in 1925, playing seven times from 1925-1940. The series was discontinued from 1940 until 1986, when the teams have met annually.
  • Simpson vs. Loras under Glogowski:
    • 2013: Simpson 27, Loras 10 (Dubuque)
    • 2012: Simpson 28, Loras 7 (Indianola)
    • 2011: Simpson 21, Loras 3 (Dubuque)
    • 2010: Simpson 14, Loras 7 (Indianola)
    • 2009: Loras 45, Simpson 21 (Dubuque)
    • 2008: Simpson 21, Loras 6 (Indianola)

A look at the Duhawks

  • Wide receiver Nate Even is the spark plug for one of the top passing attacks in the Iowa Conference. The 5-11 senior is the top target for the Duhawks, averaging 7.2 catches for 115.5 yards per game. He has already surpassed 100 yards three times this season, including a school-record 238-yard effort against Wisconsin-Stout in week two. 
  • The starting signal caller for the Duhawks is freshman Robert Kelly. Kelly was inserted into the lineup in week four when Dylan Jones went down with an injury against Augustana. In his first two games as a starter, Kelly threw for 399 yards and four touchdowns with just one interception, but last week against Central he threw three picks in a 41-14 loss.
  • Nate Carrier and Calvin Smith carry the load in the running game. The No. 6 rusher in the conference a year ago, Carrier has run for a team-high 287 yards in 2014, averaging 3.4 yards per carry. Smith, a senior, will get the start this afternoon. He comes in averaging a team-high 3.9 yards per carry, rushing 20-plus times in each of the last two games. He broke out for 107 yards in the loss to Buena Vista but was held to 55 on 21 carries last week against Central.
  • Defensively, Loras comes into today's giving up more than 400 yards per game, the second-worst average in the Iowa Conference. In conference play, that number inflates to 523 yards, worst in the Iowa Conference. Loras' last two opponents - Buena Vista and Central - have combined for 1,100 yards of total offense. The Beavers totaled 633 yards, throwing for 432 and rushing for 201.
  • Despite its struggles on the defensive side of the ball, Loras leads the league in both interceptions (10) and sacks (19).
  • Ball-hawking cornerback Maurice Young is tied for the league lead with four interceptions on the season, but the freshman hasn't created a turnover since week two. He snagged three picks in the opener against Elmhurst and had one against UW-Stout. His nine passes defended are tied for the league-lead. 
  • The duo of Damon Davies and JP Awe share the league-lead with 9.0 tackles for loss, while Davies is also tied for tops in the conference with 7.0 sacks. Sophomore middle linebacker Calvin Harridge leads the entire IIAC with 71 tackles through six games.
  • Returning Second Team all-Iowa Conference return specialist Danny Willis is the league's top kick returner, averaging more than 23 yards per attempt. Freshman placekicker Mason Quigley has made 5 of 8 field goals on the season, including two of 35 yards or more. He connected on a season-long 42-yarder against Buena Vista.

Storm defense among nation's best

  • The Simpson defense ranks in the top 11 in the nation in three categories:
    • Fumbles recovered - 5th (10)
    • Punt return defense - 8th (1.17 yards per return)
    • Red zone defense - 11th (opponents score just 54.5 percent of the time they get inside the 20)
  • The Simpson defense went eight straight quarters and more than 136 minutes without allowing a touchdown, keeping opponents out of the end zone from the second quarter against UW-River Falls through the first quarter against Buena Vista. Simpson allowed a rushing touchdown to River Falls running back Kywon Cartwright in the first quarter on Sept. 13, didn't allow a touchdown against Illinois Wesleyan on Sept. 20 and held Buena Vista out of the endzone in the first quarter on Oct. 4. The streak totaled 136:01.

Playing by the rules

  • Simpson is one of the least penalized teams in the nation, getting flagged just 24 times through six games. The Storm receive an average of four flags per game, the fifth-best clip in Division III and second in the Iowa Conference (Buena Vista, 3.17).

Rushing by committee

  • Simpson's rush offense has been a group effort in 2014. Four players – three running backs and quarterback Dylan Berkey– have carried at least 55 times through five games.
  • Bruising back Ethan Calvert leads the team with 301 yards and three TDs, scat-back Tyler Kenny has 260 yards and multi-faceted Jordan Beem – who also has 11 catches on the year – has  226 yards. Berkey has 220 yards rushing and a team-high five rushing TDs, three coming in the opener at Iowa Wesleyan on Sept. 6.

Berkey makes most of opportunity

  • It took three years, but senior quarterback Dylan Berkey finally got his opportunity to run the Simpson offense in the 2014 season opener against Iowa Wesleyan. Berkey sat behind 2013 IIAC Offensive MVP, Taylor Nelson, for the past three seasons. 
  • In his first game as a starter, Berkey completed 20 of 30 passes for 228 yards with a touchdown, rushing for three scores as Simpson beat Iowa Wesleyan 43-7 on Sept. 6.
  • This season Berkey is 106 of 188 with 8 TDs and 8 INTs. He is completing 56.4 percent of his passes and averages 216.3 yards per game, fourth in the IIAC.
  • Berkey had the first 300-yard passing game of his career in the loss to Buena Vista, going 22 of 38 for 304 yards.

Big-play Walker Holland sparks offense

  • Senior Walker Holland has emerged as a big-play receiver for the Simpson offense in 2014. He leads the team with 30 catches for 512 yards on the year, averaging 85.3 yards per game and more than 17 yards per reception.
  • Of his 30 receptions, 23 have been "money" catches (receptions that go for first downs or touchdowns) and 8 have been for 20 yards or more. 
  • Against Wisconsin-River Falls, all three of Holland's catches went for 38 yards or more, catching a 43-yard touchdown in the first quarter, a 40-yarder in the second and a 38-yard touchdown in the fourth. All three of his receptions against Illinois Wesleyan resulted in first downs, including a clutch 69-yarder on a slant in the fourth quarter that set up the game-clinching field goal in a 13-3 win.
  • Holland made a career-high eight receptions in the loss against Buena Vista.

Clark goes long

  • Junior wide receiver Corbin Clark made an 83-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter of Simpson's loss to Buena Vista on Oct. 4.
  • The reception was the longest by a Simpson receiver since 2011 and is tied for the fourth-longest reception in school history.

Playing keep away

  • Few teams in the nation have been better at keeping the ball out of the hands of the opposition than Simpson. The Storm's average time of possession is 32:16, currently ranked 36th in Division III.

Proficiency in the kicking game

  • Simpson has the rare luxury of two, game-tested placekickers in senior Logan Klein and freshman Drew Jensen
  • Klein is 4-for-5 in field goals on the year and 5-for-7 in extra points, all of his misses coming because of blocks. Jensen has made 3 of 4 field goals overall and is 10-for-10 in extra point attempts.
  • Simpson's seven made field goals are tied for first in the Iowa Conference.
  • Klein has also been getting the job done in the punting game. His 38.2 average ranks third in the IIAC. Klein has pinned opponents inside their own 20 four times and has three boots of 50-plus yards.

Klein named IIAC Special Teams Player of the Week

  • Logan Klein earned IIAC Special Teams Player of the Week honors after week one when he made two field goals and went a perfect 4-for-4 in extra point attempts. 

Glogowski climbs wins list

  • Seventh-year head coach Jim Glogowski improved to 33-30 (now 33-33) during his career with Simpson's 13-3 win over Illinois Wesleyan on Sept. 20. The win moved him ahead of Jay Niemann (32-29 from 2002-07) for third on Simpson's all-time wins list. He needs one win to tie R.G. "Hap" Miller (34-47-3 from 1948-57) for second on the all-time list.
  • Glogowski has a way to go to become Simpson's all-time wins leader. Jim Williams holds the title, going 106-48-1 during his 15-year career from 1987-2001.
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