September 6, 2012

GAMEDAY CENTRAL - Defiance at Adrian - Game Two

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DEFIANCE, Ohio -
Defiance will hook up with Adrian on the gridiron for the 59th time when the Yellow Jackets invade Performance Stadium on Saturday night at 6:00 pm. Both sides will be looking to rebound from disappointing performances in their season openers last week.

SCOUTING DEFIANCE: The Yellow Jackets featured several new faces in their season-opening loss against Albion. Defiance had 13 freshmen make their collegiate debuts in the contest and struggled to execute against the much more experienced and defending Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Champion Britons. DC did manage to spread the ball around, as eight different players ran the ball and five caught at least two passes.

SCOUTING ADRIAN: Adrian was tabbed as the top team in the MIAA, after returning 13 starters from its 8-2 squad of 2011. The Bulldogs struggled in the opening week of action however, as eight sacks allowed combined with a trio of turnovers wiped out a strong offensive showing in a 20-17 loss to Carthage. Senior wideout, Justin Hemm, highlighted the attack by catching nine passes for 169 yards to earn Offensive Player-of-the-Week honors from the MIAA.

LAST MEETING: Defiance coughed up the ball on the first snap of the afternoon and saw Adrian capitalize with a touchdown and a 6-0 lead just over one minute into the game on September 10 of 2011. The Jackets rallied to tie the score at 6-6 on the legs of Drew Kuesel and Rick Powell but the Bulldogs added a pair of touchdowns in the second quarter and a final score in the fourth for a 27-6 win inside Justin F. Coressel Stadium. Adrian dominated play in the trenches and powered past the Jackets on the strength of 244 rushing yards on 48 carries. Damon Brown did much of the damage with 178 rushing yards and two touchdowns for AC, while Brian Mircovich sparked the DC attack with five receptions for 51 yards. Tony Sierra highlighted the afternoon for the Defiance defensive unit with 12 tackles, while Deontae Bridgeman countered with 13 stops for Adrian.

SERIES HISTORY: Defiance and Adrian have shared a very competitive rivalry throughout the years, with Adrian holding a narrow, 29-28-1, edge in the all-time series. Things have slanted the way of the Bulldogs in recent history however, with Adrian claiming victory in each of the last five meetings. DC's last win over the Black and Gold came via a 10-0 triumph in the first-ever contest inside Performance Stadium on September 9 of 2006. The victory netted Defiance special mention on ESPN's College GameDay from Mark May.

LAST TIME OUT: The No. 34-ranked Britons of Albion reached the end zone on six-of-seven possessions in the first half of Defiance's season opener, piling up 41 first-half points and blanking the Yellow Jackets by a 55-0 margin. DC had just one turnover and controlled the ball for nearly 40 minutes of action but little else went right for the Purple and Gold. The most glaring stat came on special teams, where Albion averaged 24.4 yards per punt return to gain outstanding field position throughout the contest. Garrett Teague led the DC offense with 55 rushing yards and 84 yards through the air on 13-of-24 passing, while Gregg Pickett paced the defense with seven stops. Andre Leverenz also played well, adding 2.5 stops for lost yardage among his five tackles.

NON-CONFERENCE WOES: Defiance has struggled outside the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference in recent history, losing seven-straight games against non-conference opponents. DC's last victory outside of league play came in the 2009 season opener at Coressel Stadium with a 13-7 win over Muskingum on September 5. Since that triumph, the Jackets are 0-7 in non-conference action and 13-10 against HCAC foes.

AROUND THE HCAC: After a 2-7 showing in week one, the HCAC will face another challenging wave of non-conference tilts in the season's second week. Hanover (0-1) will play host to No. 8 Wabash in a 1:30 pm start, while Bluffton (1-0) heads to No. 17 Baldwin Wallace and No. 16 Franklin (0-1) plays at NCAA Division I Butler in a 6:00 pm start.

ONLINE WEBCASTS: Defiance College would like to thank Hubbard Company, Mark Moats Ford and The Plaza Motel for their support of the Yellow Jacket Sports Network in 2012. Each of DC's five home football games in 2012, along with the road games at Adrian and Bluffton will be broadcast live at www.DefianceAthletics.com/video. Past broadcasts will also be archived and available at that link.

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