McDaniel shuts down Juniata in opener
Green Terror posts first 3-0 win since 1942
HUNTINGDON, Pa. – Ray O'Hara (Yardley, Pa./Conwell-Egan Catholic) netted a career-high 120 yards on 20 carries to lead an offense that did just enough to earn McDaniel a 3-0 victory over Juniata in the season and Centennial Conference (CC) opener for both teams on Saturday.
The Green Terror (1-0, 1-0 CC) outgained the Eagles (0-1, 0-1 CC) by a margin of 243-184 and took freshman Bill Castor (Morrisville, Pa./Conwell-Egan Catholic) provided the only points of the game with a 27-yard field goal in the second quarter.
Chris Kolb (Keymar, Md./Francis Scott Key) and Aaron Slaughter (Baltimore, Md./Loyola) each recorded six tackles to lead a defense that won a game 3-0 for the first time since Oct. 17, 1942 against Mt. St. Mary's and shut out an opponent for the first time since a 20-0 win over Dickinson on Oct. 16, 2004. The three combined points was the fewest in a game during Tim Keating's 18-year tenure.
David Smyers provided 105 of Juniata's yards on 12 of 36 passing.
After the defense forced an Eagle punt on their first possession, McDaniel put together a 13-play, 60-yard drive that marched the Green Terror to the Juniata 20 but Castor misfired on a 37-yard attempt.
McDaniel continued to move the ball on its next three possessions before Castor had a chance to redeem himself, converting from 27 yards on the other end of the field with 10:54 on the clock for a 3-0 lead.
Neither team was able to penetrate the other side of the field until the middle of the third quarter when the Green Terror drove to the Eagle 24 but a Jordan Baird interception derailed the drive.
The defense took control once again and Paul Smith (Woodlawn, Md./Western Tech) tipped and intercepted a Juniata pass three plays later to set McDaniel up at the 36-yard line but the offense lost 10 yards on the ensuing drive and punted the ball away.
The Green Terror had one final deep drive, moving the ball 43 yards on eight plays to the Eagle 17. O'Hara ripped off a 20-yard run on the series but three straight incompletions gave the ball back to Juniata with 12:37 to play.
Three plays netting zero yards sent the ball back to McDaniel but another three-and-out forced Jake Nichols (Frederick, Md./Gov. Thomas Johnson) to attempt to pin the Eagles deep. He put the punt in the endzone and Juniata started its march at the 20.
Derek Kramer, who finished with 79 yards on 18 carries, accounted for all of the Eagles positive yards on the next drive, moving his team to the McDaniel 20.
However, sacks a Steve Wetherhold (Catasauqua, Pa./Catasauqua) and Evan Neville (Binghamton, N.Y./Binghamton) 10-yard sack followed a Sam Cox (Towson, Md./Towson) 10-yard sack gave the Green Terror possession at it own 40 with 4:30 to play.
McDaniel took 1:42 off the clock and Nichols put a 43-yard punt inside the 10-yard line. The defense allowed Juniata to move just 17 yards in its final attempt for a tie or winning score.
Bill Gerdes (Freehold, N.J./Colts Neck) added five tackles for the Green Terror defense, including 3.5 tackles for loss and a sack.
Nichols averaged 36.2 yards on eight punts, dropping three inside the 20-yard line.
McDaniel opened its season with a win for the third straight year but earned a victory in its initial conference game for the first time since 2005.
The Green Terror returns to action in the home opener against Moravian on Saturday. Game time is 2 p.m.