DEFIANCE, OHIO - The Defiance College Yellow Jackets travel to Danville, Ky. for a non-conference game against Centre (Ky.) College at Farris Stadium at 1:30 p.m. [Complete Game Notes]
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Saturday's meeting will be the third meeting in the history of the two teams. Each team has claimed a win in the series standings with a record of 1-1. Centre defeated Defiance, 34-7, last year at Coressel Stadium.
In last year's game against the Colonels, the Yellow Jackets scored the first points with a touchdown in the first quarter. Centre then scored 34 unanswered points to take the overall victory.
Scouting the Yellow Jackets
After one game this season, the offense is averaging 225.0 yards per game this season. Sophomore Logan Scott (Curtice/Genoa) is listed as the starter at quarterback. Last week against Adrian in the season opener, Scott completed nine-of-29 passes for 170 yards.
The Yellow Jackets have a young backfield with freshman Jeff Watson (Fort Wayne, Ind./Homestead) listed as the starter. To date, Watson has six carries for one yard. Also look for the duo of freshman Tanner Hughes (Pierceton, Ind./Whitko) and junior Cody Wilson (McComb) to see carries. Hughes currently leads the team with 26 yards in five touches, while Wilson has carried the ball four times for 25 yards.
At the wideout position, look for juniors Cody Wilson, Andy Foore (Swanton) and freshmen Devin Bolden (Lake Worth, Fla./Wellington) and Nate Roberts (St. Petersburg, Fla./Boca Ciega) to start. Wilson leads thet eam receiving with four catches for 79 yards so far this season. Foore is second with two catches for 60 yards and Bolden and Robersts each have one catch for 28 and four yards respectively.
On defense, Defiance is currently allowing 509 yards per game after just one contest, but has accounted for a pair of takeaways already this season with two fumbles.
The defensive line will be anchored by seniors Kyle Wilson (Wauseon) and Cody Lee (Tampa, Fla./Jefferson). Kyle Wilson has made five total tackles (two solo and three assists). Lee has also recorded five tackles (three solo and two assists). Also look for junior Matt DeVore (Van Buren) and sophomore Greg Ward (Ypsilanti, Mich./Ypsilanti) to start alongside Kyle Wilson and Lee.
The linebackers will start a pair of freshman in Jalin Nealy (Pontiac, Mich./West Bloomfield) and Justin Braxton (Orlando, Fla./Dr. Phillips). Nealy had a breakout game in is collegiate debut last week against Adrian with a game-high 16 tackles (eight solo and eight assists) to lead the team in that category. He also added a tackle for loss and a forced fumble. Braxton made five total stops (two solo and three assists).
The Jacket secondary is led by junior Kenny Jones (Toledo/Bowsher) and freshman Dalin Brown (Port St. Lucie, Fla./St. Lucie Wester Center) at the corners along with senior Andrew Feldhaus (Lutz, Fla./Steinbrenner), junior Cody Wiggins (Howell, Mich./Howell) and sophomore Jacob Bickel (Fort Wayne, Ind./Concordia Lutheran) at the safety positions. Jones is currenlty tied for third on the team in tackles with eight (five solo and three assists) and also had one fumble recovery against Adrian which he returned for a touchdown. Brown has yet to record any tackles or other defensive statistics. Feldhaus is second in tackles with 11 (six solo and five assists) to go along with a tackle for loss. Wiggins has made one tackle and Bickel has added five tackles (three solo and two assists).
On special teams, freshman Tyler L'Heureux (Apopka, Fla./Apopka) will handle the place kicking duties, while junior Tom Woehnker (Kendallville, Ind./East Nobel) will be the team's starting punter. L'Heureux has only attempted one field goal so far this season, but missed on his 42-yard attempt. He is a perfect one-of-one in extra point attempts. Woehnker has punted the ball five times and is averaging 40.8 yards per punt. He has recorded two punts over 50 yards and has pinned the opponents inside their 20-yard line on two ocassions.
Scouting the Colonels
The Colonels began their 2015 season with a convincing win against Hanover (Ind.) College last week, 63-7, after racking up 769 yards of offense, including 536 yards on the ground.
Calling the plays for Centre will be senior Heath Haden. Last week against the Panthers, Haden completed 14-of-17 passes for 233 yards and tossed three TD passes. He also rushed for nine on two carries.
Expect to see the Colonels line up with one person in the backfield as a running back with junior Nolan Coulter getting the start. Coulter was one of three players to rush for over 100 yards in the season debut. He totaled 127 yards in 16 attempts (7.9 yards per carry) and had one TD. His backup, junior Amoh Kumengisa has rushed for 99 yards on 15 touches (6.6 ypc) and a pair of scores. Freshman Trevor Carnell and senior Sawyer Johnson could both see their share of carries after both rushed for 122 and 108 yards respectively last week against Hanover.
At the wide receiver position, look for sophomore Colin Bradley, junior Rubyn Branch and senior Blake Martin to start. Of the three starters, Bradley has the most catches with two for 17 yards. Branch has one reception for 27 yards and a TD, while Martin leads the team in yardage with his only catch so far this season being for an 80-yard TD strike. Senior Jake Johnson could see time in a backup role and currently leads the team in receptions with three for 31 yards.
The Colonels will also have a player line up at the tight end position in senior Brandon Kamp. To date, Kamp has yet to catch any passes offensively.
Defensively, Centre has allowed 259 yards against Hanover, but accounted for four turnovers with three interceptions and a fumble recovery.
The Colonels line up in a traditional 4-3 scheme and will have an experienced front line with a pair of seniors and juniors. All four players rank in the top-ten in tackles with junior Trey Yeager leading the way with four tackles (three solo and one assist). Bostick has made three tackles, while Beauchamp and Morris have both added two tackles. Morris also has a sack and a fumble recovery.
At linebacker, senior Conor Flaherty will start alongside a pair of juniors in Nate Sparks and Anthony Kersey. Sparks leads the linebacking corps with four tackles and ranks tied for second overall on the team. Flaherty is next with one tackle and Kersey has yet to record any statistics on defense.
The Centre secondary will feature four seniors with Tommy Nugen and Taylor Peoples lining up at the corners and Sam Spees and Alex Mattingly at the safety positions. Peoples is tied for the team lead in tackles with six (six solo) and has one tackle for loss. Nugen is tied for second with four stops (four solo). Spees is tied with Peoples for the team lead in tackles with six to go along with a pass breakup. Mattingly has one tackle coming into the game against Defiance.
On special teams, both the kicking and punting duties will be the responsibility of junior Alex Ward. Ward kicked eight extra points last week against Hanover and is a perfect eight-of-eight on the season. He did not record a punt attempt against the Panthers.