A First Time for Everything
Prior to Chapman's season-opening 16-14 win over Whitworth, Chapman had been winless in the series. Chapman now has a 1-4 record against Whitworth dating back to 1994.
Junior K Mauricio Alfonso's game-winning field goal against Whitworth with seven seconds remaining marked the third time in school history that Chapman had won a game with a field goal in the final 10 seconds. The last time Chapman won with a last-second field goal was in 2003 as the Panthers defeated Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 17-14 on the road. The only other game-winning field goal for the Panthers at Ernie Chapman Stadium came in 2001 on a 51-yard field goal from Matt Deter with 5 seconds remaining to defeat Azusa Pacific 27-25.
A Rare Come-From-Behind Win Over Whitworth
In addition to beating Whitworth for the first time in school history and kicking a game-winning field goal, Chapman did something else against Whitworth that has not happened very often: The Panthers came from behind to get the win. Chapman is now 21-60-1 when an opponent scores first, 14-59 when trailing after the first quarter, 10-65 when trailing at halftime and 6-71 when trailing after three quarters.
Career-High for Visciglia
Senior QB Bret Visciglia set a career-high in completions against Whitworth going 23-of-34 for 192 yards and a touchdown. His previous high for completions was 21 against Menlo College in his first-career start for Chapman in 2010.
A Good Sign for the Offense
The Panthers ran for 116 yards against Whitworth and averaged four yards per carry. Freshman RB Jeremiah McKibbins led the way for the Panthers with 55 yards on 13 carries. Chapman had a 4-3 record last season in games that they ran for 100 yards or more.
Defense Doing its Part
The last time Chapman's defense held an opponent to 14 points or less was a 17-14 road win against La Verne in the 2009 season finale. Leading the way for the defense against Whitworth was junior LB Mike Mehlhaff who had nine tackles, two tackles for loss and one sack. Sophomore LB Anthony Ferraro had seven tackles, four tackles for loss and two sacks and was named to the D3football.com Team of the Week for his efforts against Whitworth. Ferraro currently leads the nation in tackles for loss and is tied for third in sacks, while the defense is 11th overall with four sacks total.
Azusa Pacific in 2011
The Cougars are off to a 2-1 start and boast a No.14 ranking in the latest NAIA Coaches Top-25 Poll with their lone loss coming to FCS University of San Diego 42-40. Azusa Pacific's two victories have been blowouts over Division III foes La Verne (65-14) and Whittier (51-3). The Cougars are averaging 52 points and 540 yards of total offense per game which rank first and second in NAIA, respectively. Its defense hasn't been too bad either, limiting opponents to 19.7 points and 322 yards of total offense. The Cougars' run defense has been especially strong, limiting opposing ball carriers to 2.6 yards per rush.
Cougars Running Wild
Of Azusa Pacific's 1,620 yards of total offense in three games this season, 1,114 have been on the ground. The Cougars are averaging 371.3 yards per game rushing which ranks second in NAIA and 8.3 yards per carry. Leading the running attack is dual-threat senior QB John van den Raadt at 113.7 yards per game followed by junior RB Johnell Murphy who averages 99.7 yards. The Cougars have six ball carriers averaging 25-or-more yards per game. Last season Azusa Pacific won 35-17 over Chapman and ran all over Chapman's defense, totaling 403 yards on 46 carries for a total of 8.8 yards per rush. Chapman trailed 21-17 at halftime, containing van den Raadt for the most part, but in the second half he got loose for touchdown runs of 50 and 77 yards to break the game open. He ran for 162 yards against Chapman in 2010 while Murphy ran for 206 yards.
Chapman vs. Azusa Pacific
Azusa leads the all-time series 7-5, having won the last four games dating back to 2002. In 2001, Chapman defeated Azusa 27-25 on the aforementioned game-winning 51-yard field goal by Matt Deter.
Support Coach to Cure MD
Coach Owens and his staff are among more than 500 universities joining forces this week to support the Coach to Cure MD program which raises awareness and money to fund research for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the most prolific lethal genetic disorder of childhood. On Saturday, Chapman's coaching staff, along with many members of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) will be wearing patches on their sleeves to raise awareness of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
To donate $5 to Coach to Cure MD, text the word "Cure" to 90999. You can also visit coachtocuremd.org to make a donation. The Chapman coaching staff, Coach to Cure MD and the AFCA would like to thank you for support.
Chapman Football on Air
For the fifth straight year, Chapman has partnered with the school's on-campus radio station, Chapman Radio, to broadcast all nine Panthers' football games in 2011 streaming live on the internet at http://www.chapmanradio.com/sports. A rotation of on-air student talent will provide play-by-play and commentary for every down of Chapman football.
by Chris Watts
Sports Information Assistant