Story and photo courtesy of Bloomsburg Athletics
CHEYNEY, Pa. - Quarterback Tim Kelly (Camp Hill/Cedar Cliff) connected on scoring passes of 42 and 28 yards to Ryan Dickerson (Harleysville/Souderton) to help the fourth-ranked Bloomsburg University football team survive a scare and stayed unbeaten with a 27-13 win over Cheyney University on Saturday in a PSAC (Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference) Eastern Division matchup.
The Huskies (8-0, 5-0 PSAC East) started quickly on defense forcing a three and out for the Wolves (1-7, 0-5 PSAC East) giving Bloomsburg the ball at their own 31-yard line following the punt.
On the opening play of the drive Bloomsburg's Franklyn Quiteh (Tobyhanna/Pocono Mountain West), the NCAA D-II leader in rushing yards per game, had runs of 11 and 8 yards sandwiched around an eight-yard gain by Ryan Maggs (Beech Creek/Central Mountain) giving the Huskies the ball at the Wolves 42-yard line. On the next play freshman quarterback Kelly connected with Dickerson on a 42-yard touchdown pass putting the Huskies on top 7-0.
On Cheyney's next possession, taking over at its own 27-yard line, the Wolves would begin to establish control of the game. Utilizing their triple-option offense, the Wolves put together a time-eating 17-play, 73-yard drive that took more than 10 minutes off the clock with Darrius Watson scoring on a five-yard run to tie the score at 7-7. Twice on the drive the Wolves were able to convert on fourth and short to keep possession of the ball.
In the second quarter the teams traded punts with only Cheyney moving the ball beyond the 50-yard line. At halftime the Wolves held the edge in time of possession 23:50 to 6:10 keeping the Huskies high-powered offense off the field.
The Huskies began the third quarter much they did the first quarter. Starting on their own 35-yard line, the Huskies used a mix of the run and pass to move down field. Following a one-yard run from Quiteh, Kelly hit Ryan Dickerson (Harleysville/Souderton) for 17 yards with Quiteh running for 21 yards on the next play putting the ball at the Wolves 26-yard line.
Runs of four yards by Quiteh and then 10 and five yards for Eddie Mateo (Bethlehem/Freedom) put the ball at the Cheyney seven yard line. From there Quiteh went the final seven yards for a 14-7 lead with 12:02 left in the third.
Cheyney, though, responded with another time-consuming drive on its first drive of the second half. Starting at their own 32-yard line, the Wolves moved 68-yards in 11 plays in 7:24, converting three, third down situations, getting a one-yard run from Marcus Jones to pull to within 14-13 after a missed extra point.
After the team's traded punts, the Huskies got the ball back with 13:15 to play in the game at their own 35-yard line. Bloomsburg moved the ball out to its own 43-yard line where it faced a fourth and one. In punt formation the Huskies snapped the ball to up-man Brody Meyers who picked up three yards to keep the drive alive. The Huskies kept the ball on the ground and moved to the Cheyney 29-yard line where it faced another fourth and one. Mateo's two-yard rush kept the drive alive with Quiteh scoring five plays later on a four-yard run to give the Huskies a 20-13 lead after the extra point was missed.
On Cheyney's next drive the Wolves appeared to have converted a third down pass that would have put the ball inside the Huskies 30-yard line. However, Klahif Dandy was called for illegal touching after stepping out of bound during his pass route, negating the long gain for Wolves. On the next play Bloomsburg's Terrell Oglesby (Philadelphia/Northeast Catholic) intercepted Cheyney's quarterback Blaze Wasserleben stopping the drive.
Bloomsburg took advantage of the turnover and marched deep into Cheyney territory where it faced a fourth and 10 from the Wolves 28-yard line. Kelly then hit Dickerson with a 28-yard scoring pass giving the Huskies some breathing room at 27-13 with 1:48 to go.
The Huskies got an interception from J.P. Patrick to stop the Wolves final drive and give Bloomsburg the win.
Quiteh finished the day with 108 yards rushing for Bloomsburg, while Kelly was 7-10 for 110 yards with Dickerson catching six passes for 107 yards. Justin Shirk (Harrisburg/Central Dauphin) led the defense with 9.5 tackles, while Ryan Feldman (Mechanicsburg/JP McCaskey) had 8.5 tackles.
Bloomsburg will be at Shippensburg next week in a matchup of unbeaten teams with kickoff at 1 p.m.