Collier, defense lead Blue Devils over Hornets
GAME EIGHT B-A Blue Devils: 35 Juniata Valley Green Hornets: 0 Friday,October 17, 2008 • Memorial Field • Bellwood , Pennsylvania
By Bob Miller | Daily Herald Sports Editor
— The Bellwood-Antis defense did its work on Friday evening at Bellwood Memorial Stadium. The Blue Devils scored twice on interception returns and took advantage of a short field to score three times from scrimmage in a 35-0 victory over Juniata Valley. The win was the Blue Devils fifth shutout of the year. — After a scoreless opening quarter, Bellwood-Antis scored four times in the second quarter to take a 27-0 lead at halftime. — Zach McCaulley motored 18 yards for a touchdown to cap a 41-yard march on the first play of the second quarter. Nate Gray, who completed four of six passes for 71 yards, hit Jason Miller out of the backfield for 10 yards and a first down, and two plays later McCaulley got loose for the score. — On the next series, B-A linebacker Jeff Novak recovered a Juniata Valley fumble at the Hornet-33. Tim Collier dashed 29 yards to the JV-4 and two plays later scored the two-yard TD for a 12-0 lead with 9:48 to play in the half. — Bellwood-Antis stopped Juniata Valley with the help of a quarterback sack by Adam Kovac and forced a punt. The Blue Devils drove from their own 28 to the Juniata Valley 19, but lost the ball on downs. Valley went to the air and Collier picked off an errant pass and returned it 22 yards for a touchdown. Tyler Geis kicked the PAT for a 19-0 B-A lead. — With time running down in the second quarter Juniata Valley, with the help of a 15-yard penalty against the Blue Devils, marched to the BA-21. On a designed play, Valley quarterback Zach Myers handed off to running back Aaron Wagner and ran around the left end. Wagner stopped and tossed a pass to Myers in the corner of the end zone for an apparent touchdown. The TD was nullified however by a Juniata Valley penalty. Backed up to the BA-39 after the penalty, Myers went to the air again with just seconds remaining on the clock. Gray intercepted the pass at his own eight-yard line, went to the left sideline, picked up some blocks from his teammates, and raced 92 yards to paydirt. After McCaulley ran in a two-pointer, there was a 14-point difference in just two plays from scrimmage. One minute, it seemed like Juniata Valley had scored to cut the Blue Devils lead to two scores, then the next, Bellwood-Antis had squashed the Hornets momentum and taken a four-TD lead into the locker room at the half. — “Obviously that was a big swing—14 points,” said Bellwood-Antis coach John Hayes. “They (the officials) threw the flag pretty early on that (the Juniata Valley TD), so I felt pretty confident even though they scored on the play. Had they scored there, it could have put us in a position where we were going to start wondering what was going to happen next. But then Nate did a great job of reading it and stepping in and picking it and had open field ahead.” — Bellwood-Antis didn’t have terrific stats, rushing for 171 yards and throwing for 81, but with the effort by the Blue Devils “D” and good field position, the offense did what it had to. — Bellwood-Antis took the third-quarter kickoff starting at the JV-37 and put the final score on the board. McCaulley bounced out for an 11-yard pickup on first down, Jason Miller picked up nine through the middle, and then McCaulley came back with 10 more. Collier, who did a little bit of everything and did it well, capped the scoring by grabbing an eight-yard touchdown pass from Gray and then, as the usual holder on extra point kicks, threw a two-point pass to Jared Minori. With 8:28 to play in the third quarter, the Mercy Rule running clock kicked in for the rest of the game. — After Juniata Valley completed all of their first three passes, the B-A defense limited Myers to just three more completions in 14 attempts. “I don’t think we made any adjustments, I think the guys just started to play with more focus, got to the ball a little quicker. We were flat-footed on that first play (a 33-yard completion from Aaron Wagner to a wide-open Derek Allison). We talk about that all the time—to be ready for anything. This is what teams do. We just let the guy run by us. That should not happen. I think we played well in spots, at other times, I was very disappointed with our whole energy thing, our mental alertness. I don’t know what is going on. We were on a really good run, then the last two weeks have been a little bit of the same. Tonight was better than last week, but we still had a lot of times where we just weren’t into it.” — “Give Juniata Valley credit, they executed, they ran by us, got the ball and did things. Obviously, they work hard too.”
BLUE DEVIL NOTES: McCaulley rushed 12 times for 82 yards and scored his 15th touchdown of the year to lead the Blue Devils… B-A had three quarterbacks complete at least one pass—Gray was four-for-six, Nate Plummer was one-for-two, and Lucas Evans was one-for-one… Collier scored by three different methods, rush, pass reception, interception, and now has eight TDs for 48 points… Ben Martinez also had a quarterback sack, Adam Kovac had one and shared another with Jeff Novak… Tyler Geis kicked the PAT after Collier’s interception return, despite having to kick it an extra 15 yards because B-A penalty after the touchdown… With 53 yards rushing, Juniata Valley is the sixth straight team held under 60 yards rushing by the B-A defense… Tyrone running back Mark Mingle (166 yards) is the only back to rush for 100 yards against the Blue Devils in 2008.