Big Special Teams Plays Spark Football to Opening Win

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Soccer Volleyball, field hockey

The Muhlenberg football team may be running a new offense, but it was an old standby of a play that provided the turning point in a 27-7 season-opening win against The Apprentice School.

Andrew Onimus
The key interception was the first for Onimus in his career. Flynn also recorded his first pick, and O’Connor added his third.
The Mules got off to a slow start. They gave up a long opening drive , turning away the Builders when junior Andrew Onimus picked off a pass at the goal line, then allowed a 41-yard touchdown pass after a fumble to fall behind 7-0. They also had a punt blocked in the opening quarter.

Trailing by that score late in the first quarter and faced with a fourth-and-5 at their own 20, the Mules called a fake punt, which they have used effectively many times in past years.

It worked again. Senior Shane O’Connor took the snap and ran 32 yards for a first down. Three plays later, senior Dan Deighan reached the end zone from 20 yards out to tie the score.

Muhlenberg wasn’t done with its special teams tricks. On the ensuing kickoff, senior Michael Daniel recovered his own onside kick, setting up an eventual 26-yard field goal by sophomore Connor Winter, which gave the Mules the lead for good. The biggest play from scrimmage on the drive was a 42-yard completion from Deighan to sophomore Tyler George on a flea-flicker.

Isaiah Vaughn
Vaughn was one of eight Mules to catch at least two passes.
Dan Deighan and junior Joe Carlucci combined to throw for 337 yards, with each responsible for a touchdown. Deighan finished 17-of-23 for 212 yards, while Carlucci was 9-for-12 for 125 yards.

The Mules tacked on to their lead in the third quarter on a 22-yard Winter field goal and a 15-yard pass from Carlucci to senior Marcus Toomey following an interception by sophomore Chris Flynn.

On the final play of the game, Muhlenberg’s special teams again came through, with junior Darnell Davis blocking a punt and recovering the ball in the end zone for a touchdown.

Senior Terrence Dandridge narrowly missed a 100-yard game, rushing for 94 yards on 21 carries. Senior Isaiah Vaughn notched his second career 100-yard game, hauling in six balls for 110 yards.

Junior Kory Crichton led the defense with eight tackles, while senior Matt Johnson had 2½ tackles for loss, including a sack, in his first game back after missing the entire 2011 season with injury.
Click here for box score.
Click here for complete stats.