Bethany, WV – It wasn’t pretty, but it sure was exciting for the Geneva College football team on Saturday night. The Golden Tornadoes used a 17-point comeback and a goal line stand with 14 seconds remaining in regulation time to seal a 37-33 victory at Bethany College. The win pushed Geneva’s record to 2-2 including its second road win of the season. “It’s a great feeling to get out of there with a win,” said head coach Geno DeMarco. “We didn’t do a whole lot right in the first half, but our guys found a way to get it done. I’m still not sure how they did it, but they did it.”
Geneva watched Bethany build a 20-3 first half lead and it looked as though the Bison may run away and hide before a second half turnover led to a Geneva touchdown as the Golden Tornadoes managed to pull within seven points before the halftime break. “The last five minutes of the first half were big,” said DeMarco. “We got some momentum and they basically woke up a sleeping giant and we took advantage.”
A.J. Delmonico caught a 40 yard touchdown from David Girardi and Nick DiPietro followed with a 24 yard field goal with 26 seconds remaining before halftime to get Geneva to within seven points.
The second half opened with Corey O’Patchen’s first of two touchdowns. O’Patchen pulled in a 40 yard pass from Girardi to tie the game and the see saw affair began. The teams traded touchdowns the rest of the way with Geneva getting on the board with an eight yard run from Gerard Muschette before O’Patchen struck again on an 88 yard hook-up from Girardi. DiPietro’s extra point gave Geneva a 34-33 lead with 5:44 to play. Following another Bethany turnover, DiPietro connected on his third field goal of the game from 26 yards out to extend the lead to 37-33 with just over three minutes left.
Bethany was not done as it drove the length of the field to inside the one yard line with only 14 seconds remaining. Chance Kelosky met Bethany’s Eric Walker in the hole on the final play of the game and kept the big running back six inches from the goal line as time expired. “Just a huge play,” said DeMarco. “We were six inches away from being 1-3 and now here we are with new life to our season.”
Muschette continued his assault on the Geneva record book with 151 yards on 28 carries. Through the air, Girardi was 20-31 for 372 yards and three touchdowns. O’Patchen pulled in four catches for 146 yards while Delmonico put up 106 yards on seven receptions.
Dan Dillman led the Geneva defense with ten tackles including a sack on the night. Kelosky had nine tackles including the game saver on the final play of regulation.
The Golden Tornadoes will take a trip to Latrobe next Saturday to face the Saint Vincent Bearcats, who picked up their first PAC victory on Saturday with a win against Thiel College. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 pm. Geneva returns to Reeves Field on October 9th to face Waynesburg at 4 pm.
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).