Back to Basics, Geneva Picks Up First Win at Thiel

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Van Zanic

Director of Sports Information

(724) 847-6886



September 27, 2008


Greenville, PA- Geno DeMarco and the Geneva College football team had two weeks to stew over a 48-6 loss to Salisbury. After its only bye week of the season, the Golden Tornadoes responded with a solid 31-17 victory over Thiel College to improve to 1-2 on the season. Playing its first action against a PAC foe, Geneva went back to the basics of running the football and pulled off the plan to near perfection with 231 yards on the ground. "We wanted to get back to what we know best," said DeMarco. "Our guys up front really stepped up to the challenge and we were able to find an offensive identity for the first time this year."

DeMarco′s club has been searching for that identity and may have found the right recipe with a consistent ground attack that included a trio of stars. Sophomore Gerard Muschette led the charge with 126 yards on 16 carries and a touchdown. Matt Dean played a strong supporting role with a pair of touchdowns and 34 yards, while junior transfer Matt Barge chipped in with 72 yards on the ground and 35 receiving yards.

After both defenses controlled play in the first quarter, Geneva drew first blood early in the second quarter. After a botched punt snap set the Golden Tornadoes up at the Thiel 22 yard line, David Girard capped off the scoring drive with a one yard plunge. Geneva extended its lead to 14-0 when Muschette jogged in from one yard out.

Midway through the second quarter, Thiel got on the board thanks to a John Madeline 30 yard field goal. It looked like Geneva would take its 11 point lead into the halftime, but a blocked punt with 17 seconds remaining and subsequent 32 yard return from Bryan Villegas pulled Thiel to within 14-10 after 30 minutes.

Geneva controlled the ball and the clock for most of the second half. The Golden Tornadoes got a pair of touchdown runs from Dean and a 34-yard field goal from Nick DiPietro to cap off all the scoring. "For two teams that came into the game 0-5 combined, I think both teams played extremely well," DeMarco said. "They are a very solid football program and we are thrilled to come in here on homecoming and get out with a victory. We really needed a jump start and hopefully this victory will help turn things around."

Girardi played his most effective game of the season by going 13-17 for 153 yards and one interception. Adam Chatlos led the receiving core with four catches for 30 yards. On the defensive end of the field, Zach Feltrop had 8.5 tackles, including two tackles for loss. Chance Kelosky recovered a fumble for the only take-away of the game. Kelosky also contributed with 6.5 tackles.

Geneva will look to get back to the .500 mark next Saturday when it returns to Reeves Field for homecoming against undefeated and defending PAC champs Washington & Jefferson College.