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OPENING KICKOFF: Today's Centennial Conference (CC) game marks the 15th meeting between McDaniel (1-0, 1-0 CC) and Moravian (1-0, 1-0 CC) in a series that dates back to 1972. The Greyhounds hold a 10-4 advantage in the all-time series, including three wins in the first three meetings since the renewal of conference foes in 2007. The last Green Terror win was by a 21-7 margin in the 2002 ECAC Southeast Bowl.
WHEN LAST WE MET: Steve Panasuk threw for 175 yards and two touchdowns to lead Moravian to a 21-16 victory over McDaniel in the CC football opener last season. T.J. Develin rushed for a career-best 148 yards with a pair of touchdowns to key the Green Terror, who racked up 346 yards of total offense. The McDaniel defense held the Greyhounds to minus-13 yards of total offense in the second half after 237 yards and 21 points in the first half.
LAST TIME OUT: Ray O'Hara (Yardley, Pa./Conwell-Egan Catholic) netted a career-high 120 yards on 23 carries to lead an offense that did just enough to earn McDaniel a 3-0 victory over Juniata in the season and CC opener last week. The Green Terror outgained the Eagles 243-184 and freshman Bill Castor (Morrisville, Pa./Conwell-Egan Catholic) provided the only points 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 the defense.
HEAD OF THE CLASS: Freshman Bill Castor earned CC Co-Special Teams Player of the Week honors after providing the only points of the game, lifting McDaniel to a 3-0 win over Juniata. Castor split the uprights on a 27-yard field goal with 10:54 to play in the second quarter for his first collegiate field goal, atoning for a first-quarter miss from 37 yards.
WITH HONORS: Ray O'Hara and Bill Gerdes (Freehold, N.J./Colts Neck) were named to their respective CC Weekly Honor Rolls last week after contributing to the Green Terror victory. O'Hara was named the offensive ledger after rushing for a career-high 120 yards on 23 carries. Gerdes earned the defensive nod after leading a defense that pitched its first shutout since 2004 with five tackles, including 3.5 for loss and a sack.
LEADING THE WAY: Matt Cahill (Broomall, Pa./Haverford Twp.), Chris Kolb and Aaron Slaughter will captain the squad in 2010. The three captains are the fewest named by the Green Terror since 2007 when it was just Brad Baer and Ryan Mellinger guiding the team. Cahill and Slaughter become the first three-time captains in the history of the program. Kolb will join his senior teammates as a first-time captain.
SHOOTING BLANKS: McDaniel posted its first shutout since defeating Dickinson 20-0 on Oct. 16, 2004. Beyond that, it was the first time the Green Terror won a game by a 3-0 score since Oct. 17, 1942, managing just a field goal against Mt. St. Mary's. Furthermore, the three combined points were the fewest in a McDaniel football game during Tim Keating's 18-year tenure as head coach. It was also only the second time in the 28-year history of the CC that a conference game has been decided 3-0. On Sept. 24, 1983 – the first season of the Centennial Football Conference – Muhlenberg defeated Franklin & Marshall. The three points was the fewest scored by a CC team in a win since Swarthmore defeated Washington and Lee 2-0 on Nov. 11, 1995.
ANOTHER FRESHMAN WINNER: Last season, then-freshman Nick DeLuca provided the winning field goal of a 22-20 game at Gettysburg. With the departure of DeLuca this season, freshman Bill Castor assumed kicking duties for Week One and gave the Green Terror another winner – of a different nature, however. For DeLuca last season, it was a 20-yarder as time expired for the win. This season, Castor's second-quarter 27-yarder turned out to be the game's only points and helped the freshman atone for a first-quarter miss and give his team the win.
RUNNIN' RAY: In his first game as the featured runner in the Green Terror backfield, Ray O'Hara turned in his first collegiate 100-yard rushing performance. The senior ran for 120 yards on 23 carries to pace an offense that was able to move the ball for 243 yards but could not find the end zone. The last time McDaniel won a game in which it did not score an offensive touchdown was a 7-6 win over Muhlenberg on Nov. 6, 2004. In that game, Chris Martin returned a punt 76 yards with 1:50 to play, giving the Green Terror a victory.
BATTLE OF UNBEATENS: It may be early in the season but McDaniel and Moravian meet this afternoon in a battle of the conference unbeatens. Part of the lone two Week One CC tilts, both teams won defensive battles to set up the opportunity for one team to emerge atop the standings with a 2-0 record.
WHAT A BOOT: While it was Bill Castor who earned the field goal duties in Week One, Jake Nichols (Frederick, Md./Gov. Thomas Johnson) retained his kickoff and punting duties. Nichols boomed the first kickoff of the season into the end zone for a touchback and averaged 62.0 yards on his two kickoffs. He also uncoiled a 51-yard punt – tying his career long – and averaged 36.2 yards on eight punts. He dropped three inside the 20-yard line in what became a game of field position.
SACK LUNCH: The Green Terror defensive line picked basically right up in 2010 where it left off 2009. McDaniel had 32 sacks in 2009 and opened 2010 with three – all from defensive linemen. Sam Cox (Towson, Md./Towson), who had 7.5 sacks a year ago, had a key 10-yard sack on a fourth-quarter drive after Juniata had marched to field-goal range. Bill Gerdes notched the first solo sack of his collegiate career. Conversely, the relatively young and inexperienced offensive line allowed six sacks in the opener after allowing 12 all of last year.
ROAD WARRIORS NOW: Entering the sixth game last season, McDaniel had lost 13 straight conference road games. However 47 weeks later, the Green Terror is now riding a three-game road winning streak. None of those wins have been outstanding offensive displays, though. In the three wins, the team has scored a total of 41 points and the offense has managed just three touchdowns. Conversely, McDaniel has not faired well at home since the road losing streak has come to a halt. The Green Terror is 0-3 at home since Oct. 17, 2009 despite scoring six more points in those three games than the three road victories.
SPREAD THE LOVE: Despite only managing three points last Saturday, McDaniel was able to move the ball with varying success during the game. The offense generate 243 yards, including 158 through the air. Tom Massucci (Seneca, N.J./Tabernacle) did a good job spreading his 18 completions among five different receivers. The top two Green Terror receivers accounted for 11 of those receptions. CJ Billera (Allentown, Pa./Emmaus) caught a team-high six passes for 59 yards while Matt Cahill had five receptions for a team-best 60 yards. The remaining seven receptions were spread amongst the next two receivers on the depth chart and starting tailback Ray O'Hara. In addition to his 120 rushing rushing yards, O'Hara caught two passes out of the backfield for 13 yards. Ryan Procaccini (Hockessin, Del./Wilmington Friends School) had three catches for 13 yards while Nick Bender (Harrisburg, Pa./Susquehanna Twp.) hauled in two balls for 13 yards.
BLOCK IT LIKE BENDER: Senior WR Nick Bender, who is listed at 5-foot, 7-inches, is the second shortest player on the Green Terror roster – and shortest amongst those who receive significant playing time. However, he is been one of the top defensive special teamers during his time on the Hill. For the third time in his career, he blocked a kick. In addition to his blocked punt on Saturday, he also blocked punts at Gettysburg as a freshman and against Dickinson as a sophomore. He is the first player to block three kicks in his career since Brett Rough (2002-05) blocked four – a total which is tied for tops in program history.
SECONDARY TO NONE: When the Green Terror entered the season, it knew it had two solid experienced players returning to the defensive secondary. Neither of those two – Chris Kolb and Aaron Slaughter – disappointed in the season debut last week. Kolb and Slaughter led a staunch defensive effort, tying for team-high honors with six tackles apiece. Kolb also broke up a pass when Juniata attempted to go deep down the sideline early in the game.
TERROR TIDBITS: The Green Terror has managed just 13 points in its two CC trips to Juniata... McDaniel won its third straight season opener... The Green Terror opened the conference season with a win for the first time since 2005 and is now 13-15 in CC lidlifters... McDaniel put together a 14-play, 5-minute, 42-second drive on its first possession but did not have a drive of longer than nine plays or 4:30 the rest of the afternoon… The Green Terror improved to 44-2 all-time under Tim Keating in games when the team holds its opponents to single digits. McDaniel has won its last 10 such contests.
COACHES' CORNER: Tim Keating is in his 18th season at the helm of the Green Terror. His 104 victories are the most by any McDaniel coach. Keating enters this week with record of 104-70-3, guiding the program to seven CC championships and a pair of NCAA playoff wins. Before coming to the Hill, Keating notched a 26-23 record in five seasons at Wesley… Scot Dapp is in his 24th season leading Moravian. Dapp enters today's game at 138-99-1 overall. Dapp's 138 victories is the most by any coach in program history. During his tenure, Moravian has reached the NCAA tournament twice, including a berth in the 1988 South Region championship game. He has also guided the Greyhounds to a MAC championship (1988), a Commonwealth championship (1993) and four ECAC appearances (2002, 2004, 2005, 2008).
THE WORD ON MORAVIAN: The Greyhounds enter today's game off a 12-6 victory over Susquehanna in last week's season and conference opener… Rocco Del Priore scored on a five-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter to give Moravian a lead it would not relinquish in handing the Crusaders a loss in their CC debut… Del Priore finished the game with 76 yards rushing on 24 attempts and added 49 kickoff return yards for 131 all-purpose yards… Freshman QB Phil Gardner completed 7 of 12 passes for 72 yards in his first collegiate game… A Susquehanna fumble at its own 3-yard line led to a safety with 5:54 to play that gave Moravian a 12-6 lead. Travis King intercepted a Crusader pass with 2:55 on the clock to thwart Susquehanna's last attempt at the tie or win. A Joe Tegan five-yard rush and two Del Priorre carries gave the Greyhounds a first down and ability to run out the clock with two kneel downs… David Wacker keyed a defense that kept Susquehanna out of the end zone with eight tackles, including one for loss. Daniel Burley added seven tackles and two pass breakups while King had seven stops in addition to the game-clinching interception… Moravian held the ball for a CC-best 37 minutes, 50 seconds last week. The offense put together an 18-play drive that consumed 10 minutes and ended with a field goal in addition to a 20-play march to end the third quarter and begin the fourth quarter that consumed 12:08 before stalling inside the Crusader 10.