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Muhlenberg College

Saturday, October 18, 2008 - page 2

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football breaks long drought at mcdaniel

Maryland is the Old Line State, and here’s a line that was old and dusty: The Muhlenberg football team won both of its games in Maryland this season.

Senior John DeLuca rushed for a career-high 242 yards and three touchdowns to lead the fifth-ranked Mules to a 49-6 win at McDaniel.

The victory was the first in Westminster since 1988 for the Mules, who last year snapped an 11-game losing streak to the Green Terror with a 43-0 shutout. Muhlenberg (6-0, 4-0) has now won 17 consecutive regular-season games and 12 straight Centennial Conference contests.

Combined with a 28-23 win at Johns
John DeLuca
DeLuca needs only 64 yards for his second consecutive 1,000-yard season. His 28 career rushing touchdowns are second all-time in Muhlenberg history.
Hopkins two weeks ago, it gave the Mules a 2-0 record in Maryland, a state in which they went winless from 1990 to 2000.

DeLuca’s 242 yards were the fifth-highest single-game total in school history. His previous high of 188 came last year at Franklin & Marshall. He also added 63 yards on two kickoff returns for a total of 305 all-purpose yards – also the fifth-best by a Mule. DeLuca scored all three of his touchdowns, including a career-best 72-yarder, in a 28-point third quarter.

McDaniel (2-4, 1-3) needed only three plays to take an early lead, as TJ Develin’s 51-yard run set up his own 6-yard scoring carry with 11:43 on the first-quarter clock. The extra point was blocked by junior Ewan Wright, and the Green Terror netted only 112 yards the rest of the way.

“We stayed positive,” said DeLuca of the slow start. “Not every game gets off perfectly, but we worked hard and it came off in our favor.”

The Mules final broke through with a 14-play, 78-yard drive that consumed 6:39. DeLuca had nine of his 32 carries on the drive, and quarterback Eric Santagato carried the final 22 yards a minute into the second quarter for his 20th career rushing touchdown.

Three plays into the ensuing McDaniel drive, junior Cameron Ahouse picked off a pass and returned it 51 yards for a touchdown. It was his second career “pick-six,” and the other also came in Maryland, at Johns Hopkins in 2006.

Senior David Mazzola’s 64-yard punt to the 2-yard line set up Muhlenberg’s third touchdown of the quarter, on a 14-yard pass from Santagato to senior Joe Caporoso.

Muhlenberg started its first two second-half drives in Green Terror territory and finished both in the end zone. After a short punt, DeLuca capped a 6-play, 43-yard drive with a 2-yard run. Three plays later, Mazzola recovered a fumble, and on the next snap Santagato hit junior Phil Cresta with a 32-yard scoring pass. Cresta has scored a touchdown in seven consecutive games.

The Mules converted 11 of 15 third downs and outgained McDaniel, 488-180. The Green Terror completed only three of 15 pass attempts.
Click here for box score.
Click here for complete stats.

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