BLOOMSBURG--Franklyn Quiteh (Tobyhanna/Pocono Mountain West) rushed for 144 yards and scored one touchdown to lead the ninth-ranked Bloomsburg University Huskies to a 27-20 win over Ashland (OH) University on Thursday night in the season opener for both teams. Quiteh now ranks ninth on the Huskies all-time rushing list with 2,159 yards.
The Huskies got off to a fast start as they drove 89 yards on 12 plays for a touchdown score. Quiteh led the way for the Huskies on the drive as he rushed for 31 yards. Two rushes for 14 yards by Quiteh set up a 14 yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Pat Carey (Williamsport/Loyalsock Twp.) to a wide open Kyle Fisher (Denver/Cocalico). Dan Fisher (Liverpool/Central Dauphin) would connect on the PAT to put the Huskies ahead, 7-0.
Ashland would take over at their own 26 before the Huskies forced a punt on a three-and-out. Carey would start the drive off with a 40-yard pass to Quiteh, who made the grab with one hand on the left sideline. The Ashland defense would stop the Huskies on their next three plays, forcing a Bloomsburg fourth down. Bloomsburg's Dan Fisher (Liverpool/Central Dauphin) would connect on a 27-yarder to give the Huskies a 10-0 advantage.
Bloomsburg would again hold the Eagles to three plays, forcing another punt from Gregg Berkshire. The Huskies would threaten again as they marched from their own 37 to the Ashland 22. On a 2nd and 10, Carey dropped back looking for the end zone but would be picked off by Ashland's Donnie Dottei at the two yard line and would return it 28 yards.
Ashland would have three possessions after the interception to Bloomsburg's two, but neither team would put any points on the board. Bloomsburg would claim a 10-0 lead entering the half.
Bloomsburg started with the ball in the second half after a 16 yard return from DJ Robinson (Sinking Spring/Conrad Weiser) gave the Huskies the ball at the 22 yard line. On the first play of the series Bloomsburg fed the ball to Quiteh who would run the ball for 60 yards before being stripped of the ball at the Ashland 18 yard line. Ashland's Domi-on Combs would recover the fumble.
Both teams would have the ball for two series resulting in no scores. Ashland would start a drive with 8:30 left in the third quarter on their own 20. Bloomsburg's defense would come up big again, forcing a punt after an incomplete pass on 3rd and 1 from Ashland Taylor Housewright.
At the 7:43 mark the Huskies took the ball over at their own 38. Ashland's defense would then step up to the challenge and force a punt after BU's firs three plays. Ashland's Tyler McFarlin would fumble the punt return at the five yard line. With the ball bouncing around the Husky goal line, Bloomsburg's Terrell Oglesby (Philadelphia/Northeast Catholic) would dive on the loose ball in the end zone for the touchdown. The Huskies would hold a 17-0 lead with 5:33 remaining in the third.
On Ashland's next possession, senior captain Oscar Rivera (Bethlehem/Liberty) would pick-off Housewright's pass on the Ashland 34. After a holding penalty against the Huskies, Bloomsburg was looking at 1st and 20 from the Ashland 44 and would be forced to punt after three plays.
The Eagles would then put together an 13 play, 91 yard drive resulting in a Jordan McCune touchdown run at the 12:59 mark in the fourth quarter. Berkshire would connect on the PAT to make it 17-7, Huskies.
Ashland would again put the pressure on the Bloomsburg offense, resulting in a three-and-out. With Ashland taking over at their own 28 they would again put together a scoring drive as Berkshire connected on a 22 yard field go with 7:20 remaining in regulation.
On the following kickoff Berkshire would boom a kick to the Husky end zone. Kyle Fisher (Denver/Cocalico) would return the ball and lose it as Ashland's Jacob Lerman recovered the fumble at the BU 20. Jordan McCune would score his second touchdown of the night four plays later to bring the game to a 17-17 standstill.
Kyle Fisher (Denver/Cocalico) would get another chance on the return as Berkshire again kicked it his way, this time Fisher sliced the defense by taking the kick back 78 yards to the Ashland 20. Quiteh would need three runs before diving in from the one yard line to put the Huskies back on top 24-17.
On the ensuing kickoff Dan Fisher (Liverpool/Central Dauphin) would send it sky high to the Ashland 25. The high kick left the Eagles in confusion as no one grabbed the bouncing ball once it hit resulting in a Bloomsburg recovery. Fisher would go on to split the uprights at the 3:30 mark to give the Huskies a 10 point edge, 27-17.
Ashalnd would get the ball back with 3:26 remaining and would drive the ball 45 plays resulting in a field goal from Berkshire, bringing the score back to a seven point game.
After an offside penalty call against the Eagles during the ensuing kick-off, Ashland would again attempt the onside kick. Bloomsburg would make the recovery on the second attempt at the onside kick with 1:32 remaining. After two rushes from Quiteh and kneel down by Carey, the Huskies claimed their first win of the 2011 season, 27-20.
Carey went 7-18 with one touchdown and one interception while Housewright threw for 106 yards on 17 completions. Ashland's McCune and Anthony Taylor combined for 143 yards on the ground with McCune making two touchdowns. Bloomsburg's Kyle Fisher (Denver/Cocalico) caught a team high four passes for 53 yards and one touchdown.
The Huskies will be back in action as they travel to take on Clarion on Saturday, September 10th at 1:00 p.m.
EAST STROUDSBURG - Redshirt senior quarterback Ray Wagner had a record-setting first career start for East Stroudsburg University, throwing for 375 yards and six touchdowns in the first half as the Warriors opened the 2011 season with a 56-14 win over visiting Pace on Thursday night at Eiler-Martin Stadium.
Wagner's six touchdowns were the most-ever by an ESU quarterback in a half, set a record for the most in a debut start, and included a 97-yard pass to redshirt sophomore wide receiver Robert Bleiler which made the score 42-0 at halftime.
The Warriors lit up the scoreboard with touchdown passes of 19 yards to redshirt junior Wade Williams and 70 yards to sophomore Dusty Reed in the first quarter, and plays of five yards to Reed, 35 yards to redshirt junior Jordan Hallman and 44 and 97 yards to Bleiler in the second quarter.
Bleiler had three catches for 172 yards and his first two career touchdowns and Reed caught five passes for 136 yards and two scores. Both players had their first career 100-yard receiving games.
Five players caught a touchdown pass against Pace for the second straight season, as redshirt sophomore quarterback Nate Daniels fired a 31-yard pass to redshirt freshman tight end Steven Jones in the fourth quarter, the first career scoring plays for both players. Quarterback Matt Marshall threw five TD passes, all to different receivers, in a 57-0 win at Pace in last year's season opener.
The Warriors had 667 yards of total offense, the eighth-most in school history. Wagner (13-20, 375 yards) and Daniels (5-7, 81 yards) combined for 456 yards passing and junior tailbacks Kendrick Williams (nine carries, 101 yards) and Eric Deery (16 carries, 92 yards) combined for 193 of ESU's 211 yards on the ground.
Wagner's aerial show was the story of the first half, as he was 6-for-10 for 152 yards in the first quarter and exploded for a 7-for-10 performance for 223 yards in the second quarter. The TD pass to Bleiler was the second-longest in school history behind a 99-yard play from Bret Comp to Ken Kopetchny in 1990.
ESU missed a field goal on its first possession, then struck for TD drives of 33, 92 and 85 yards to put the game away early. The first scoring drive was set up by a forced fumble on the first career sack by redshirt senior outside linebacker Bryan Billger. Four of the Warriors' six first-half touchdowns came in less than a minute and three were on the first play of a possession.
Junior cornerback Curtis Culbreath had a 66-yard interception return for a score on Pace's first possession of the third quarter and led the Warriors with nine tackles. ESU also recovered two fumbles while Pace fell on three ESU fumbles. The Warriors produced four sacks of quarterback Jordan Raynor, who was 20-for-32 for 185 yards and two touchdowns. Eshawn Armstrong led the Setters with 18 carries for 95 yards.
* Head coach Denny Douds opened his 38th season by improving to 230-154-3 in 387 career games; Douds coached his first game after turning 70 years old in January
* ESU is at IUP next Saturday with a 4 p.m. kickoff; IUP will play its season opener after a bye the opening week