Football Bounces Back to Beat Susquehanna

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Soccer Volleyball

The last time the Muhlenberg football team played at home, it got off to a slow start and had to pull off a dramatic fourth-quarter rally to defeat McDaniel.

A slow start was not an issue against Susquehanna.

The Mules dominated the early part of the game, jumping out to a 20-0 lead en route to a 30-14 win against the Crusaders. The win sent Muhlenberg into its bye week with a 3-2 overall record and on a high note following last week’s 27-17 loss at Johns Hopkins.

MJ Rus
Rus found the end zone for the second time this season when he dove in from one yard out. It was the first rushing touchdown of his career.
Before Susquehanna scored its first touchdown on a 72-yard run with 3:44 left in the second quarter, here’s what the stats looked like: first downs, 9-0 in favor of Muhlenberg; total plays, 54-11 in favor of Muhlenberg; time of possession, 15:26-5:24 in favor of Muhlenberg.

Senior Gregg Mercogliano kicked three field goals, and junior Terrence Dandridge scored on a pair of short runs for the Mules. Senior Mike Fiorillo led the defense with nine tackles and the first two interceptions of his career, including one on the Crusaders’ first play from scrimmage.

Senior Chase Nadell returned the opening kickoff 48 yards to the Susquehanna 43, and from there the Mules needed nine plays to score the first points of the game, with Dandridge running behind the right side of the line on third down from the 1 for his fourth touchdown of the season.

Matt Musick
Senior Matt Musick (top) finished with four tackles, including a career high-tying two for loss.
Fiorillo’s first interception did not lead to any points, thanks to an interception by Susquehanna in the end zone. But after the defense forced a three-and-out, Muhlenberg embarked on an 18-play, 70-yard march that ended with a 1-yard fourth-down plunge by senior MJ Rus on the third play of the second quarter.

Mercogliano added two field goals from 26 yards in the second quarter, the first after an interception by senior Kevin Ryan and the second after a 32-yard catch by junior Marcus Toomey on second-and-22.

Another long reception by Toomey, this one of 30 yards, set up Dandridge’s second 1-yard run with 1:19 left in the half.

Susquehanna, which came from behind to win on the final play of the game in all three of its wins, drew closer in the second half on a 2-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, but the Mule defense held from there.

Mercogliano’s 27-yard field goal made it 30-14 with 3:26 left in the game, and the Crusaders’ final drive ended at the Muhlenberg 40 when Ryan broke up a fourth-down pass.

Toomey caught five balls for a career-high 121 yards, and Dandridge finished with 78 yards on 26 carries. Sophomore Darnell Davis blocked a punt.
Click here for box score.
Click here for complete stats.