INDIANA, Pa. -- Indiana University of Pennsylvania had no trouble handing Towson State yesterday, routing the Tigers, 42-0.
The Indians (3-1), ranked No. 5 in Division II, shut down the Tigers (0-4) on offense and shredded their defense.
Through its first three games, Towson State's offense, directed by senior quarterback Chris Goetz, at least has been able to score, averaging 262 yards per game. The defense had given up an average of 510 yards per game.
This time, both sides contributed equally to the loss. The Tigers had 265 yards of offense, but missed several opportunities. The defense yielded 426 yards, but several of the Indians' touchdowns came in short-range situations.
The defense, although punctured for four first-half touchdowns, came up with two turnovers in that span, as safety Gary Hatcher intercepted two passes. Towson State also recovered a fumble on a punt. For the game, IUP turned the ball over five times, Towson State, four.
The Tigers' offense, however, could do little with these opportunities, as the Indiana defense stuffed them at practically every turn.
How bad was it? In the fourth quarter, the Tigers had 12 downs from inside the IUP 15-yard line and did not score.
In the first series, IUP intercepted a fourth-down pass at the 10, but the Tigers got another chance when the Indians' backup quarterback, Chris Geary, fumbled a snap and Chad Yagodich covered the ball for the Tigers at the 5.
Rick Marsilio, who had replaced Goetz in the third quarter, came in and threw an incomplete pass. Sophomore Jarrett Grier, making his collegiate debut, dove to the 1 on the second play and then fumbled when he carried on third down. Marsilio recovered the fumble at the 2, but then was stopped at the goal line on fourth down.
After an IUP punt, the Tigers moved to a first down at the Indians' 8, and for the third successive time in less than 10 minutes, failed to get into the end zone.
Towson State's best first-half effort came late in the second quarter when Goetz passed for three first downs and ran for another. The Tigers drove to the IUP 19, where a pass intended for Tony Hill was picked off by Frank Urbaniak at the 12 and returned to the Indians' 42.
Indiana's offense controlled the first three quarters, scoring twice in each period, and its defense dominated the fourth quarter.
The redshirted home team put this one out of sight early, doing the damage in quick thrusts. IUP's four first-half touchdowns took 3 minutes, 56 seconds; 0:00 (return on blocked field goal); 1:43; and 0:04 (return on blocked punt). It was a demolition, swift and sure.