Penn (1-1) vs. Dartmouth(1-1)
12:30 p.m. Memorial Field (Hanover, N.H.
Radio - Listen Live or ESPN 920 AM at www.pennathletics.com
Game Notes v. Dartmouth
The University of Pennsylvania hits the road for the first time this season, traveling to Hanover, N.H. for an Ivy League matchup with Dartmouth. Technically, it’s the second road game this season, as last week’s 28-24 heartbreaking loss to Villanova at Franklin Field was the Wildcats’ home game.
This season Penn football games can be heard live on ESPN 920 AM and on the Penn Athletics web site www.pennathletics.com. Matt Leon (play-by-play) and Hench Murray (color analyst) return for their third season in the broadcast booth. Brian Seltzer will provide sideline content. The pre-game show begins approximately 30 minutes before kickoff.
At halftime of this week’s broadcast, Matt will havean interview with Offensive Line Coach Andy Coen.
Watch Out Dartmouth - In both 2002 and 2004, the Quakers rebounded from losses to Villanova by shutting out their next opponent. In 2004, Penn handed Dartmouth a 35-0 loss at Franklin Field; in 2002, Penn beat Columbia, 44-0, at Franklin Field after losing to the Wildcats.
The Quakers have outscored their opponents, 65-42, in their first two games. Beyond that, the Red and Blue have scored almost half of their points in the second quarter. This season, 31-of-65 points have come in the second 15-minute stanza.
Head Coach Al Bagnoli is just five wins shy of recording 100 victories at the helm of the Red and Blue. In 23 seasons as a head coach, Bagnoli has posted 181 wins which ranks six among active I-AA head coaches.
Coach Bagnoli is 10-3 against the Big Green in his career. He is fourth among all Ivy League coaches with 69 Ancient Eight victories.
If you missed last Saturday’s game against Villanova, you missed junior Joe Sandberg’s coming-out party. The running back from Oradell, N.J. racked up 239 all-purpose yards. Sandberg touched the ball 18 times for 104 yards on the ground and picked up 99 yards on seven catches. The last 36 yards were from two kickoff returns.
Sandberg was senior quarterback Pat McDermott’s top receiver and Penn top rusher in the game, averaging 5.8 yards per game, including a 34-yard rush through the Villanova defense and into the end zone.
Sandberg ranks sixth in the Ancient Eight in rushing yards per game with 75. What may be more impressive is Sanberg’s 320 all-purpose yards (160.0 per game) which ranks third in the Ivy League and 10th in Division I-AA.
McDermott completed 25-of-37 passes and threw for 334 yards and one touchdown against Villanova. He connected with five different receivers and threw a 53-yard touchdown pass to Matt Carre. At the end of the first half, McDermott was 140-of-16 with 189 yards and one touchdown.
The Quaker’s senior signal caller has been very accurate in his first two games this season. McDermott leads the Ivy League in pass efficiency and ranks 18th in Division I-AA.
Get the Eraser Out With 334 more passing yards to his credit, McDermott moved into 12th all-time at Penn. He has 2,678 career passing yards and needs just 81 more to move into 11th and 181 yards to move into the top-10. Only eight quarterbacks at Penn have more than 3,000 yards passing and McDermott, who averages 239.5 yards per game, is well on his way to becoming the ninth.
Junior Matt Carre caught a 53-yard pass from McDermott and ran it in for a touchdown to give Penn a 17-0 lead against the Wildcats on Saturday night to give him three touchdowns in two games this season. He has caught touchdown passes of 22, 44 and 53 yards, an average of 39.6 yards per touchdown.
Carre leads the Quakers in scoring this season, averaging 9.0 points per game. He ranks tied for second in the Ivy League and 40th in Division I-AA.
The Penn defense held Villanova to just seven first downs and five rushing yards in the first half of last week’s game. In fact, the Penn defense ranks first in the Ivy League and eighth in Division I-AA in rushing defense, allowing only 71 yards in two games on the ground.
Seniors Vic Davanzo and Doug Middleton both picked off Villanova’s Frank Jankowski last weekend. Davanzo picked up his third career interception when he came down with the ball late in the second quarter on the Penn 45-yard line. Middleton took his pick seven yards late in the first quarter.
Of the three interceptions the Quakers have this season, two have resulted in a Red and Blue score. In Penn’s season opener, Michael Johns returned a picked 33 yards for a touchdown. Against Villanova, Davanzo’s interception resulted in a Penn touchdown six plays later.
Punter Anthony Melillo has posted impressive numbers in his first two games. Against Villanova he made five punts for 189 yards and placed one punt inside the 20-yard line. In two games thus far he is averaging 36.09 yards, which ranks second in the Ancient Eight. He punted a 50-yarder against Villanova which is a career best.
Sophomore kicker Derek Zoch is 8-for-8 in point after attempts this season after booting three kicks through the uprights against Villanova. He has made more attempts than any other kicker in the Ivy League and ranks atop the list in percentage with three other kickers.
In field goals on the season, Zoch averages 1.5 field goals per game which is tied for 12th in Division I-AA.
Adam Francks ranks third in the League in punt returns, averaging 7.6 yards per return. The senior defensive back has five returns for 38 yards, including a 13-yard return against Duquesne.
Sam Mathews is chasing history this season and needs to put up some big numbers to do so. In 2003 and 2004 senior Mathews ran his way through the record book as well as down the field. The two-time All-Ivy League running back has 18 career rushing touchdowns after recording seven last season. He stands ninth all-time at Penn in rushing yards (2,046). Mathews averages 4.4 yards per carry and 99.1 yards per game in his Penn career.
In the first game of the season, Mathews rushed for 64 yards on 13 carries, averaging 4.9 yards per carry. He also had three catches in the game for eight more yards. He sat out the second game of the season against Villanova due to an injury sustained in the Duquesne game.
Shut Out Last season the Red and Blue shut out the Big Green on Franklin Field. Then-senior Dan Castles had three touchdowns in the first half to pace the Quakers in the Ivy League opener. It was the first shutout since Nov. 23, 2002. McDermott threw for 249 yards on 21-for-34 passing, while Castles had eight catches for 145 yards. Sam Mathews had an outstanding afternoon, rushing for 131 yards on 23 carries, while Vic Davanzo picked up his first interception of the season and ran it back 61 yards for a touchdown. Then-senior Brian Arguello was a perfect 4-for-4 in point-after attempts. Dartmouth quarterback Charles Rittgers threw for 178 yards on 23-for-36 passing, while Ray Rochester rushed for 56 yards. The Penn offense picked apart the Big Green defense with 397 total yards. Dartmouth had just 232 total yards on the day.
Dartmouth enters today’s contest with a 1-1 record after falling to then-No. 2 New Hampshire, 49-20, in a meeting of the Granite State’s college football programs. Erik Hinterbichler kicked field goals of 44 and 29 yards, while two different quarterbacks Carl Rittgers and Joshua Cohen threw touchdown passes to Ryan Fusilier and Brett Lowe. The Big Green had two interceptions in the game, including a 44-yard return by Joe Scola. The Big Green won their season opener against Colgate, 26-21, at Memorial Field.
Dartmouth Offensively Starting quarterback Charles Rittgers has picked up 288 yards passing on 28-of-50 attempts and thrown for two touchdowns. Joshua Cohen and Dan Shula both saw action at signal caller against the Wildcats on Saturday. Cohen was 5-for-8 with a touchdown and had 63 passing yards against UNH. The Big Green like to pass the ball and one of their top receivers is Ryan Fuselier. The wide receiver has 116 yards on 11 receptions and has scored one touchdown this season. He is second in the League in receptions per game (5.5). Dartmouth’s quarterbacks like to hand off to Jason Bash and Ikechi Ogbonna, who have 21 and 13 rushing attempts this season. Bash has scored the only rushing touchdown on the season, a 1-yard run in the Big Green’s win over Colgate.
Dartmouth Defensively Dartmouth has four interceptions for 79 yards and three sacks for a loss of 29 yards. The Big Green have five defenders with 15 or more tackles. Ian Wilson leads the team in tackles with 21 (8 solo), while Justin Cottrell has 18 stops (12 solo), Joe Gibalski (6 solo) and Steve Jensen (9 solo) have 16 and Kyle Cavanaugh (11 solo) has 15. The defense also has two forced fumbles and seven pass break-ups in just two games this season. Thirteen different player have combined for 16 tackles for a loss of 42 yards.
Dartmouth Special Teams Erik Hinterbichler is a perfect 3-for-3 in field goals this season including a 44-yarder against UNH and 5-for-5 on extra-point attempts. He has punted for 444 yards for an average of 34.2 yards. Three different players have returned the ball Jensen, Ogbonna and Milan Williams. Jensen has eight kickoff returns and averages 22.1 yards.