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September 19, 1997
Quaker gridders self-destruct
♦Methodist Capitalizes on Guilford Mistakes, Wins 26-19.
BY DAN GATTI
The Quakers were their own
worst enemy on Saturday, los
ing to Methodist 26-19 despite
dominating for much of the
The Quakers hurt them
selves badly with 6 lost fumbles
which stopped several promis
ing drives and led to 19 of
Methodist's 26 points. They
also hurt themselves by com
mitting 7 penalties for a total
of 63 yards.
These turnovers and penal
ties negated what was, overall,
an impressive Quaker effort.
Straight from the beginning, the
Quakers played charged-up, in
spired offense, led by receivers
Junior Lord and William
"Squirt" Rochelle, who com
bined for 18 catches and 290
yards, many of which were af
ter the catch on screen routes
and slant patterns.
The defense, too, played ex
tremely well. Led by lineback
ers Chris Li (11 tackles and 1
sack) and Jason Laners (8 tack
les, 1.5 sacks), the defensive line
was consistently able to break
through the huge Methodist of
fensive line, anchored by 300-
pound tackles Damon Slone and
Randall Webster. Overall, the
defense limited Methodist to
153 passing yards, collected 4
sacks, and gave up only 37
yards to Methodist star running
back DeCarlos West.
But the turnovers killed
Guilford. The first of them-a
fumble by quarterback Jason
Hoffman-stopped the very
promising Guilford opening
drive. The second negated a
good defensive stop by Guilford
and gave Methodist the ball at
the Guilford 12, which put
Methodist on top early, 6-0.
Guilford then, under the di
rection of quarterback Dan
Strelkauskas, ran off 19 straight
points against the Methodist de
fense, relying mostly on screen
passes to Lord and Rochelle along
with the powerful running of run
ning back David Heggie. At half
time, Guilford was leading, 19-6.
But that was all the scoring Guil
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Methodist defensive end Ronnie Pilfroy reaches up to block a Matt Daly kick early in the Ist quarter.
ford would do.
"In the first half, we owned
'em," said Lord. "But they came
out and made the adjustments
they needed to make at half
time, and really stopped our
running game, and that's what
The difficulty Guilford had
running the football was in no
small part due to the loss of
Heggie, who ran for 28 yards on
7 carries in the first half, only
to be sidelined for the 2nd half
of the game. It is not known if
Heggie will return to action next
Saturday against Washington &
In the second half, two
fumbles on consecutive drives
by Strelkauskas hurt Guilford
badly, one setting up a Method
ist touchdown to begin the half,
and then another stopping a
promising Guilford drive at the
Methodist 12. But the worst was
yet to come.
By far the most controver
sial call of the game came on the
Quakers' next drive. Deep in
Quaker territory, Strelkauskas
threw a screen pass to Lord.
The ball appeared to bounce off
Lord and fall to the ground, an
incomplete pass It was ruled a
catch and a fumble, however,
and when Methodist recovered,
it set up the tying score.
"The ball just sailed
through my hands. It wasn't a
catch. It was an incomplete
pass," said Lord. "It was a bad
call. But that's a part of foot
ball. Sometimes the calls don't
go your way."
One of the big controversies
of the day-the decision to start
UMass transfer student and
first-year player Jason Hoffman
at quarterback over the Guil
ford veteran Strelkauskas-came
to an ambiguous conclusion.
Hoffman started the game, but
after the first two Guilford
drives were unsuccessful, coach
Mike Ketchum was quick to put
Strelkauskas back in. It was
Strelkauskas who then led the
team to all of its 19 points, end
ing the day with 23 completions
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in 39 attempts for 328 yards
and 2 TDs.
"Yeah, I was disappointed
with the amount of playing time
I got," said Hoffman, "but I un
derstood it. I was expecting to
have a series off [in the first
half] but once Dan was out
there, he started putting us in
the end zone... it's very tough
for me. I didn't get to do the
things I had wanted to do."
Hoffman came back in for a
short period in the 3rd quarter,
but'was unsucessful, and ended
the day just 3 for 5 for 17 yards.
By the Numbers...
Receiving - Lord - 12 rec, 192 yds
Rochelle - 6 rec, 98 yards
Rushing - Heggie 7 for 27 yards,
Fearrington 9 for 31 yards
Passing - Strelkauskas 23 for 29,
328 yds, 3 TDs
Permit No. 57