Mount St. Joseph vs. Bluffton preview
By Bill Hanefeld Jr., interim sports information director
October 24, 2005
When: Saturday, October 29, 2005 at 1:30 p.m.
Where: Bluffton, Ohio - Dwight Salzman Stadium
On the Radio: Listen live to Bluffton University football on WDOH 107.1 FM.
Bluffton University (3-4, 2-1) knocked off perennial Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference power Hanover (3-5, 2-2) 33-19 on Saturday, October 22. Mount St. Joseph (6-1, 3-1) handed Defiance College its first HCAC loss of 2005 when it defeated the Yellow Jackets by a score of 40-19.
The Head Coaches
Head coach Greg Brooks is in his third season at the helm of the Bluffton University
football team. Brooks' teams have collected ten wins during his tenure as head coach
of the Beavers. Prior to assuming the head coaching duties at Bluffton, Brooks was
the quarterbacks' coach and offensive coordinator for the Beavers.
Mount St. Joseph is led by Rod Huber who is entering his sixth season as the head coach of the Lions. He is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati where he earned a bachelor's degree in social studies education. Huber has been a member of the Lions' coaching staff since the program was founded in 1990. He took over as the head coach in 2000 and after compiling a 2-18 record during his first two years Huber led the Mount to three consecutive seasons over .500, including a first ever HCAC title in 2004 when the Lions posted a 10-0 regular season record.
Bluffton-Mount St. Joseph Series History
Mount St. Joseph holds an 8-6 advantage in the all-time series with Bluffton. The
Beavers fell to the Lions in 2004 by a score of 25-13 at Schueler Field.
Last Week for the Beavers and Lions
The Beavers ended a ten-game losing streak to Hanover College when they knocked off the Panthers 33-19 at Hanover on Saturday, October 22. The Panthers threatened early but the Bluffton defense forced turnovers deep in Beaver territory on two of Hanover's first four possessions to keep Hanover out of the end-zone in the first half. A 75-yard Ben Dodds run late in the first quarter set up the Beaver's first score, a one-yard Jared Owens rush. Owens found Anthony Bryant all alone in the second quarter for a 67-yard touchdown completion that put Bluffton up 13-6 at the half. Following a Hanover touchdown on the Panther's first drive of the second half, the Beavers rolled off three scoring drives in a row as Owens, Dodds and junior fullback Ben McCullough all hit paydirt to put Bluffton up 33-13 with less than four minutes to play. A late Hanover touchdown ended the day's scoring as Bluffton finished with a 33-19 victory, only the fifth in 29 games against the Panthers. Dodds and McCullough both went for over 100 yards on the ground while Owens completed ten passes for 154 yards and one touchdown. Jeremy Anderson picked off two Hanover passes and Kyle Rode force a fumble on the Panther's first possession of the game.
Mount St. Joseph ended the Defiance College four-game winning streak and with that victory created a four-team logjam at the top of the HCAC as Anderson, Defiance, Mount St. Joseph and Bluffton currently have only one conference loss with three weeks remaining in the 2005 season. The Lions were determined not to be the third conference power to fall victim to the Yellow Jackets in as many weeks. The Lions found themselves down 12-7 early following a 79-yard scoring strike from Yellow Jacket quarterback Hans Vetter and a 76-yard run by Scooter Curtis. Mount St. Joseph then exploded as it scored the next 33 points to take a 40-12 advantage at the end of the third quarter. Two Lion scoring runs and two long touchdown strikes from Rashon Lewis to Andy Wellendorf stunned the Yellow Jackets who had not been defeated in conference action. A Defiance touchdown early in the fourth quarter provided the final margin for the Lions who finished with a 40-19 victory. Andy Wellendorf caught three passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns while Mike Lovell rushed for 73 yards on 17 carries. Matt Lawless and P.J. Volker led the Lion defense with nine tackles each.
Last Season's Contest
Bluffton fell 25-13 to the Lions at Schueler Field on October 30, 2004. The loss dropped the Beavers to 2-2 in the Heartland Conference after they had opened HCAC action with victories over Manchester and Anderson. Tight end Mark Gable caught five passes for 66 yards. Running back Ben Dodds led the rushing attack with 86 yards on only 15 carries while scoring the lone Bluffton touchdown in the first quarter. Seth Burkholder kicked a pair of long field goals for the Beavers. Sam McCullough led the Beaver defense with 15 tackles, including 6 solos.
Mount St. Joseph finished with 371 total yards, including 309 on the ground as it
controlled the ball for nearly 37 minutes and picked up 20 first downs. The Lions
scored on three of their four chances in the red-zone and they limited Bluffton to
189 total yards of offense for the game. Mike Lovell picked up 168 yards on 20 carries,
two of which went for touchdowns. Ricky Story also went over 100 yards as he gained
119 on 22 rushes. Matt Lawless led the Lion defense with 11 tackles.
Leading the Beavers
Senior Ben Dodds leads the Bluffton rushing attack with 152 carries for 843 yards and six touchdowns. Dodds has 17 catches for 178 receiving yards. Junior fullback Ben McCullough has gained 324 yards on 63 carries while reaching the end zone four times. Quarterback Jared Owens has completed 59 passes for 733 yards and five touchdowns while also finding the end zone six times on the ground. One of his favorite targets has been tight end Jeremy Haselman who has hauled in 15 receptions for 192 yards and one touchdown. Aaron Whitlock has four catches for 101 yards and a touchdown. Anthony Bryant has nine receptions for 124 yards and one touchdown.
Sophomore linebacker Sam McCullough leads the Beaver defense with 73 tackles (27 solos, 46 assists), including 8 TFL's for a total loss of 20 yards. Sam has forced two fumbles while also recovering one this season. Junior cornerback Jeremy Anderson has recorded 42 tackles while picking off an HCAC-leading five passes. Sophomore safety Taylor Iceman has 3 interceptions while senior safety Jon Mershman has two interceptions to go along with his 41 tackles. Senior defensive tackle Rashid Morton and freshman defensive end Kyle Rode lead the Beavers with three sacks apiece.
Next up for the Beavers and the Lions
Bluffton will travel to Franklin on Saturday, November 5, 2005. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. (Indiana time). Mount St. Joseph travels to Anderson on November 5. The game is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.