100th Season


Two Big Quarters Lift Chargers Past Bulldogs In GLIAC Action

A quick start followed by a strong third quarter paved the way for the Hillsdale Chargers in a 34-14 win over the Ferris State Bulldogs Saturday (Nov. 1) afternoon in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action at Frank "Muddy" Waters Stadium in Hillsdale, Mich.

The Chargers struck early on a 72-yard scoring pass only 1:39 into the contest and took a 17-0 lead in claiming the Senior Day triumph against a Bulldog team that still had playoff aspirations entering the game.

Following the long opening TD from quarterback Troy Weatherhead to Andre Holmes on the game's initial possession, the Chargers were able to build on their lead with a 24-yard strike from Weatherhead to A.J. Kegg with 7:40 left in the first period. Hillsdale tacked on a 41-yard field goal from Mark Petro with 7:47 to go in the first half to make it 17-0 in favor of the Chargers.

The Bulldogs seized the momentum late in the second period to make it a three-point game at halftime on the heels of a defensive score. Senior cornerback Terrell Heggins came on a corner blitz and hit Weatherhead as he tried to throw a pass, which was picked off by senior All-America defensive tackle Jake Visser who held off a couple of Charger players and rambled 34-yards into the endzone for his first collegiate touchdown.

After a 38-yard punt return from redshirt freshman receiver Damien Miller, backup junior quarterback Kyle Parrish came on in place of redshirt freshman starter Tom Schneider and directed the BUlldog offense to its only score of the day. Parrish led FSU 48 yards in seven plays and scored on a five-yard run with only 13 seconds left in the half. Senior back Paris Holloman added the two-point conversion run to make it a 17-14 contest after the opening 30 minutes of action.

While the Bulldogs had the momentum entering the half, the Chargers quickly reversed it to start the second half. Parrish was stripped of the ball deep in Bulldog territory and the Chargers took advantage as Petro converted on a 34-yard field goal only 2:06 into the third. HC then added two more third quarter touchdowns, both on short pass plays from Weatherhead to Matt Patillo and Aaron Waldie measuring two and seven yards, respectively.

HC compiled 457 yards compared to only 249 yards for the Bulldogs in the contest. Weatherhead threw for 315 yards and four TD's on 24-of-33 passing with Holmes hauling in two catches for 110 yards and Kegg making six grabs for 74 yards. Vinnie Panizzi ran for 97 yards on 21 carries.

Parrish led the Ferris offense with 130 yards passing on a 10-of-18 performance while Schneider was nine-of-17 for 62 yards. He also ran for a team-high 42 yards on 12 attempts with Parrish running for 37 yards on nine tries. Bulldog senior receiver Cole Meredith caught five passes for 61 yards.

Senior middle linebacker Kevin Noe had a productive afternoon for FSU with 15 total tackles. Junior safety Chad Wilson recorded 10 stops and Visser finished with nine tackles for the Bulldogs. Tom Korte netted a team-best 11 stops for the Chargers, who forced two Bulldog turnovers on the afternoon.

FSU dropped to 6-4 overall and 5-4 in the GLIAC this campaign while the Chargers improved to 6-4 overall and 5-4 in league play as well. The win was the third in the last four series' meetings for the Chargers and head coach Keith Otterbein, who formerly served as Ferris' head coach and was inducted into the Bulldog Athletics Hall of Fame this fall.

Ferris State will conclude its 2008 campaign by hosting the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals in their regular-season finale next Saturday (Nov. 8) at FSU's Top Taggart Field in Big Rapids, Mich. Kickoff is set for 12 p.m. (EST) and the squad's senior class will be honored prior to the Senior Day outing.

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