Beaver Falls, PA – It had been 14 years since a Geneva football team finished its home regular season schedule unbeaten. For the first time since 1995, the Golden Tornadoes did not lose a home game and that unbeaten streak was made complete on Saturday as Geneva cruised to a 54-21 senior day victory over Bethany College. Geneva moved to 7-1 on the season while the Bison dropped to 2-6 in 2009. As remarkable as it may sound, the lopsided score was not even indicative of how Geneva dominated play. The Golden Tornadoes scored the game’s first 54 points before yielding 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter.
Matt Barge scored the first of his three touchdowns by capping a four play, 54 yard drive on Geneva’s first offensive possession. Three Geneva turnovers kept the Bison in the game before the Golden Tornadoes exploded for 33 second quarter points. Geneva scored an offensive touchdown, defensive touchdown and special teams touchdown in the second quarter barrage. Barge caught a 25 yard pass from David Girardi before fellow senior running back Matt Dean took off on a 62 yard score to increase the lead to 20-0. Jake Delmonico scored on a 93 yard punt return, the longest punt return in Geneva football history, late in the second quarter. Finally, Solomon Hejirika capped off an impressive first half by picking off a pass on the final play of the half and running 48 yards for a touchdown. Hejirika finished the game with 11 tackles, one forced fumble and two interceptions including the one for a touchdown.
Taking a 40-0 lead into the locker room, the second half started much like the first with Geneva scoring on its first two possessions. Dean scored his second touchdown of the game before Gerard Muschette took off on a 77 yard touchdown run to get into the offensive act.
The Golden Tornadoes finished the day with 559 yards of total offense including 335 yards on the ground. Muschette finished the day with 153 yards on 14 carries while senior running backs Dean and Barge combined for 130 yards and five touchdowns.
Girardi was 14-20 through the air for 224 yards and one touchdown. He was pulled from the game midway through the third quarter of play.
Geneva’s defense watched sophomore quarterback Dan Pegg throw for 300 yards on 26-48 with three interceptions. In addition to Hejirika’s two picks, Josh Vermeulen came away with his first collegiate interception.
The Golden Tornadoes will now head to Kentucky next Saturday to battle the back to back PAC champions Thomas More. The Saints clinched their second consecutive PAC title on Saturday with a 14-7 victory over previously unbeaten Washington & Jefferson. Geneva upset the PAC champs last year by the score of 17-13 at Reeves Field.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College’s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).