Mount Union College 59; The College of New Jersey 7
Mount Union College (12-0) vs. The College of New Jersey (9-3)
November 24, 2007; Mount Union Stadium, Alliance, OH
Alliance, OH (11/24/07) - The two-time defending
NCAA Division III
Champions Mount Union College used a 59-7 win over The College of New
Jersey on Saturday in Mount Union Stadium before a crowd of 2,593 fans to
advance to the NCAA Division III Quarterfinals. With the win, the Purple
Raiders are now 12-0 and improve their win streak to 35 games, while
TCNJ's season comes to an end with a 9-3 mark.
Mount Union will
now face St. John Fisher College, which also advanced on
Saturday with a 38-7 win over Curry. Mount Union will continue play as
they will be looking to sew up their third straight NCAA Division III
Championship title and the program's 10th overall when play continues next
week with a Noon contest at Mount Union Stadium on December 1. The win by
MUC marks the 16th consecutive year the Purple Raiders have advanced to
the NCAA Quarterfinals (1992-2007).
Mount Union's offense would finish with 59 points, 508 yards
touchdowns, while the Purple Raiders' defense held TCNJ to only seven
points and 46 yards. TCNJ did manage to record a season best six sacks and
forced Mount Union to punt four times on the day, while also scoring on a
defense that posted seven shutouts in 12 contests thus far in 2007.
For the game, junior quarterback Greg Micheli (Upper Sandusky, OH)
for four TD's and 354 passing yards, while junior running back Nate Kmic
(Delta, OH) picked up only 68 rushing yards and added two scores on 14
carries. Senior receiver Bryson Davis (Copley, OH) led his team with six
catches for 188 yards and three scores on the day.
forced Mount Union to punt on their first possession of the
game as both senior Joe King (Mountainside, NJ/Governor Livingston) and
sophomore Paul Mychalczuk (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough) recorded sacks
of junior quarterback Greg Micheli (Upper Sandusky, OH), but junior Zach
Rinaldi (Burlington, NJ/Florence) was stripped of the ball on the play and
Mount Union's junior Daryl Ely (Winter Springs, FL) picked the ball up on
the fumble and returned it 28 yards for the Purple Raiders' first score of
the game at 11:39, marking his first tally of the year as well.
MUC added to
the scoring as the Purple Raiders junior running back Nate
Kmic capped a six-play 51 yard drive with a one yard rush at 9:11 pushing
the score to 14-0, marking his 180th point on the year.
MUC's senior kicker Mike
Zimmerman (Archbold, OH) missed a 39-yard field
goal at 3:19 in the first as his attempt was wide and to the left.
Forced to punt in the final minute
of the first quarter, TCNJ was able to
come up with the ball when sophomore Craig Meyer (Far Hills, NJ) recovered
the ball on a fumble on the punt return, giving TCNJ the ball at the
Purple Raiders' 12-yard line. The Lions would strike as senior running
back Dan Dornacker (Jersey City, NJ/Brick Township) would push it in from
one yard out and put TCNJ on the score board at 14:29 in the second
quarter and capped a 5-play, 12 yard drive.
Junior defensive back Anthony Cortina (Hamilton, NJ/Steinert)
added a sack
at 10:30 in the second quarter forcing a fourth down and marking the most
sacks allowed by Mount Union in a contest this fall. With fourth down and
19 yards to go, TCNJ forced the Purple Raiders to go for it and a dropped
pass in the end zone game the Lions the ball at the MUC 27 yard line with
10:22 left in the half. Ely picked off James to halt the Lions' drive,
marking his fourth pick off of the year. Kmic would make the most on the
drive, punching the ball in from 16-yards out and giving his team a 20-7
lead and a PAT by Zimmerman gave MUC a 21-7 lead with 8:53 left in the
Mount Union started the next drive at NJ's 22 yard
line after Pierre
Garcon (West Palm Beach, FL) returned the punt 30 yards and would score on
a drive that took just one play from scrimmage and saw Micheli find senior
Bryson Davis (Copley, OH) for a 22-yard TD pass at 6:26.
Garcon scored again at 5:03 on a 13 yard run before Micheli hit
71 yards out for another touchdown as Mount Union built a 42-7 halftime
lead. At the half, Micheli had thrown for 232 yards on a 13-for 20 effort
with one interception.
Sophomore quarterback Chris James
(Brick, NJ/Brick Memorial) was held to
18 passing yards in the first half of play as he was 7-for 18 with an
interception. Mount Union racked up 302 first half yards of total offense
on 38 plays, while holding TCNJ to 42 net yards on 37 plays. TCNJ held a
16:32 to 13:28 advantage in time of possession. By game's end, James was
8-for 23 with only 22 passing yards, while sophomore quarterback Bill
Picatagi (Hamilton, NJ/Hamilton West) added five passing yards on a 2-3
effort while netting a team-high 23 rushing yards on 13 carries.
To open the second half, MUC's Garcon recorded with his 43rd
down pass, a 22 yard catch for the score and broke the OAC's career TD
mark previously held by Ohio Northern's Steve Vagedes (1996-1999) with 43.
Davis would eclipse his personal best performance as he added
touchdown pass to help build MUC's lead to 56-7 with 6:55 left to play
after adding a 45-yard TD catch at 6:55 in the third quarter.
King suffered an injury in the late minute of the third quarter
the game, but not before recording three tackles, including a sack. King
wraps his stellar career having earned 2007 NJAC Defensive Player of the
Year honors, while netting 34.5 sacks, 142 tackles, and 57 tackles for a
Senior punter and defensive back Jeff Struble (Toms River,
Township) would finish with a career-best 74 yard punt in the opening
minutes of the fourth quarter for the Lions. He surpassed his season-high
72 yard punt in the contest and bested last year's 73-yard punt in his
final contest as a Lion.
Senior linebacker Nicholas Steffner
(Bridgewater, NJ/Bridgewater) and
sophomore linebacker Joe Spahn (Burlington, NJ/Florence) finished with a
game-high 11 stops each. Steffner added a pass break up with a half sack.
Sophomore defensive back Paul Mychalczuk (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough)
added four tackles with 1.5 sacks (-9 yards) and an interception, while
junior Frank Schultheis (Absecon, NJ/Holy Spirit) added 10 stops with a
sack (-13 yards), a quarterback hurry.
sophomore Troy Chaffin (Collins, OH) added a team-best six stops for
the Purple Raiders, while Jonathan Andrews (North Canton, OH) added five
tackles with 1.5 for a loss.
TCNJ is now 4-5 lifetime in the NCAA's since first
appearing in 1990,
while MUC is now 54-9 all-time in the NCAA's.