Tag Archive | "Grant Enders"

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Towson jumps back into CAA play Saturday at James Madison

Posted on 05 October 2012 by WNST Staff

HARRISONBURG, Va. – Returning to Colonial Athletic Association action, No. 12 Towson (2-2, 1-0) will face one of the top challengers for the CAA championship when the Tigers visit No. 5 James Madison University (3-1, 1-0) at Bridgeforth Stadium on Saturday, October 6 at 1:00 p.m.

The Towson-JMU game will be televised on NBC Sports Network with veteran sportscaster Randy Moss handling the play-by-play while former pro football standout Anthony Herron is the color analyst. Carolyn Manno will be the sideline reporter. This will be the second Towson game that will be televised by NBC Sports Network. The network also aired the Tigers’ win over William & Mary last month.

The game will also be aired on the Tigers’ web site, www.TowsonTigers.com with Spiro Morekas and Ron Meehan calling the action. The Tigers’ internet broadcast also features a one-hour pre-game show.

The Tigers, who are coming off a 38-22 loss at No. 3 Louisiana State, will be facing the JMU for the 24th time. The Dukes lead the series by a 17-5-1 margin and have won seven consecutive games against Towson. Since the two schools became conference rivals in 2004, JMU has won all seven meetings.

When Towson won the 2011 CAA championship, the Tigers and the Dukes did not face each other. However, both teams advanced to the NCAA FCS playoffs.

In games played in Harrisonburg, the Dukes have a 10-1 record against the Tigers. Towson’s only win at JMU was a 10-3 victory in 1983 when the Tigers closed out a 10-1 regular season and earned their first berth in the NCAA Division II playoffs. JMU has won seven games in a row against Towson in Harrisonburg.

“After playing LSU, I feel like we are jumping from the frying pan into the fire,” says Towson Coach Rob Ambrose. “JMU is one of the best teams in FCS football and it is going to be quite a challenge to play them down there. Every week in the CAA is like this. It is ridiculous how good this league is. Everyone has talent. Everyone is well-coached. That is just how it is every week.”

Towson and James Madison come into this week’s game as two of the top defensive teams in the FCS football. Allowing 288.50 yards per game, the Tigers rank fifth while the Dukes are sixth at 291.75 total yards per contest.

Junior linebacker Telvion Clark, a transfer from Virginia Tech, leads the Tigers with 28 tackles, a mark that places him 11th in the CAA. Senior safety Jordan Dangerfield is second on the team with 27 tackles. In Towson’s upset bid at LSU, Dangerfield made seven tackles, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble.

Sophomore running back Terrance West, (below), the tenth-leading rusher in school history, leads the Tiger offense. In four games, he has rushed for 330 yards and scored a team high seven touchdowns. In 15 career

games, he has scored 36 rushing touchdowns, setting a school record.

Playing before an announced crowd of more than 92,000, the Tigers were very competitive against LSU. Their 22 points were the most any team had scored against LSU’s highly-touted defense since Oregon scored 27 points in the 2011 season opener against the Bayou Bengals. Towson ran 73 offensive plays while LSU had 61 plays. Led by senior quarterback Grant Enders, Towson rushed for 188 yards while LSU ran for 158 yards. Enders ran for a career high a game high 86 yards on 12 carries at LSU.

At LSU, Towson controlled the clock with 34:42 of possession. Towson owned a 9-7 lead in the second quarter at LSU.

Towson’s game at James Madison is the first of seven consecutive CAA games for the Tigers. Dating back to last season, the Tigers have won eight of their last nine CAA games. The 2011 CAA champions were undefeated in CAA road games last year, posting wins at Old Dominion, William & Mary, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

After their visit to James Madison, the Tigers return to Unitas Stadium for back-to-back home games against Maine and Old Dominion. On Oct. 27, the Tigers visit Villanova. After a Nov. 3 trip to Delaware, the Tigers host Rhode Island in their final home game on Nov. 10. Towson concludes the regular season at New Hampshire on Nov. 17.

TIGER TALES:  Senior wide receiver Tom Ryan needs only eight more receptions to become the 20th player in the history of the Tiger football program with 100 career catches … He enters Saturday’s game with 92 receptions for 1,083 yards and six touchdowns.

For the fourth time in five games, Towson’s game will be televised … The season opener at Kent State was carried on Comcast-Plus while the Tigers’ home opener against William & Mary on Sept. 15 was also televised by the NBC Sports Network … Three of the Tigers’ games have been scheduled to be aired on the NBC Sports Network … In addition to the James Madison, Towson’s contest at Delaware will be on the NBC Sports Network … Last week, ESPNU televised Towson’s game at Louisiana State.

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West leads way for Towson in Homecoming victory

Posted on 22 September 2012 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – Sophomore running back Terrance West ran for three scores to set a new Towson touchdown rushing record as the 13th-ranked Tigers handled St. Francis, 46-17, Saturday night in front of a homecoming crowd of 9,828 fans at Johnny Unitas® Stadium.

West, who rushed for 62 yards on just eight carries, now owns the school touchdown rushing record with 34 scores in just 14 career games.

West wasn’t the only star of the game though as senior quarterback Grant Enders completed 14-of-18 passes for 179 yards and two touchdowns. Sophomore Derrick Joseph piled up 148 yards on a pair of kickoff returns, including a 99-yard touchdown return in the first quarter. It marked the second longest kickoff return in Towson history, just one yard behind David Meggett’s 100-yard touchdown return in 1988.

Towson (2-1) fell behind early as St. Francis (2-2) took advantage of an Enders interception which gave the Red Flash the ball in Tiger territory. Senior running back Keion Wade capped off the short St. Francis drive with a two-yard touchdown scamper to give the Red Flash a 7-0 lead less than five minutes into the game.

The Tigers would respond though with 29 consecutive points, sparked by the Joseph return that tied the game. West scored his first touchdown of the game on a two-yard run at the 8:11 mark of the first quarter and he then broke free on a 25-yard scoring run to put the Tigers up 21-7 with 2:15 remaining in the opening period.

The first West score was set up by a St. Francis fumble which was caused by junior Arnold Farmer and recovered by sophomore Tye Smith. The fumble recovery was the first turnover forced by the Towson defense this season.

Towson capped off its impressive scoring run on a Tom Ryan eight-yard touchdown reception from Enders. The Tigers pulled off a trick play after the Ryan score as junior kicker D.J. Soven took the direct snap on the point-after try and ran it in for a two-point conversion that put the home team up 29-7 at the 8:12 mark of the second quarter.

St. Francis’ Dan Conley scored on a six-yard touchdown run to halt the Towson scoring spurt on the ensuing drive for the Red Flash. However, a  49-yard kickoff return from Joseph set up the record-setting touchdown from West. The sophomore scored his fifth touchdown of the season and 34th of his career on a three-yard dash with 5:47 remaining in the opening half to put the Tigers ahead 36-14.

Towson scored the final touchdown of the half, and game, with just 23 second remaining in the second quarter as Enders found senior wide receiver Gerrard Sheppard for a 23-yard strike to send the Tigers into the intermission with a 43-14 lead.

In a low-scoring second half, each team connected on a field goal. The Tigers attempted just two passing plays in the second half.

Towson outgained St. Francis 441-233 in total yards and scored all four times it reached the red zone.

Senior Jordan Dangerfield and freshman Bryton Barr led the Tigers with eight tackles each, while senior Romale Tucker paced the defense with a pair of sack.

The Tigers will travel to Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) foe Louisiana State on Saturday, Sept. 29. The game is scheduled to kickoff at 7 p.m. and can be seen on ESPNU.

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Towson battles St. Francis in Homecoming showdown Saturday night

Posted on 21 September 2012 by WNST Staff

Tigers Seek Second Consecutive Victory in Non-Conference Battle

TOWSON, Md. – 
Coming off a 20-17 win over William & Mary in their Colonial Athletic Association opener last week, the No. 13 Towson University football team returns to Minnegan Field at Johnny Unitas® Stadium to celebrate Homecoming on Saturday, September 22 by hosting St. Francis (Pa.) University at 7 p.m.

The game will also be aired on the Tigers’ web site, www.TowsonTigers.com with Spiro Morekas and Ron Meehan calling the action. The Tigers’ internet broadcast also features a one-hour pre-game show.

The Tigers, who have a 29-14 record in Homecoming Games, will be hosting St. Francis for Homecoming for the second time. In 1996, Towson celebrated Homecoming with a 54-14 win over the Red Flash.

A member of the Northeast Conference, St. Francis is off to its best start since 2004. After opening the season with a loss at James Madison, St. Francis bounced back with a 39-28 win over Bryant and a 57-23 victory at Morehead State. The Red Flash has already matched last season’s victory total.

Averaging 302 rushing yards per game, St. Francis is sixth in NCAA FCS. Senior Keion Wade leads the St. Francis offense, averaging 104.3 yards per contest. He ran for 243 yards on 27 carries and scored three touchdowns in the win at Morehead State last week.
“St. Francis is a very good football team,” says Towson Coach Rob Ambrose. “They have a big, strong running attack and their team speed is great. On defense, they run a multitude of fronts. We are going to have our hands full on Saturday night.”

The Tigers bounced back from a season-opening loss at Kent State by opening their Colonial Athletic Association title defense with a 20-17 victory over William & Mary. In the win over the Tribe, Towson dominated the time of possession and piled up 422 yards of total offense. Sophomore running back Terrance West (Northwestern H.S./Baltimore, Md.), a pre-season All-American, ran for a season high 153 yards on 27 carries. However, for the first time in 10 games, West did not score a touchdown. In fact, he had scored at least two touchdowns in nine consecutive games, dating back to the Tigers’ 28-3 loss at Maryland on Oct. 1, 2011.

Averaging 92.0 yards per game, West is the second-leading rusher in the CAA. In 13 career games, West has rushed for 1,483 yards and he has scored 31 rushing touchdowns. He is only two rushing TD’s shy of tying the Towson career record of 31 rushing touchdowns, a mark set by Jason Corle, ’00.

Senior quarterback Grant Enders (Old Mill H.S./Millersville, Md.) has thrown for 421 yards and rushed for 86 yards in the Tigers’ first two games of the season. He has completed 42 of 57 passes and ranks second in the CAA with 507 yards of total offense.
The Tigers, who won the 2011 CAA championship and earned a berth in the NCAA FCS playoffs, will be facing St. Francis for the third time. Towson owns a 2-0 series lead.

Seniors Frank Beltre (Randolph H.S./Randolph, N.J.) and Jordan Dangerfield (Royal Palm Beach H.S./Royal Palm Beach, Fla.), the Tigers’ two All-American defensive players, both reached the 200-tackle level in the Tigers’ win over William & Mary.
A third-year starter at defensive end, Beltre enters this week’s game with 201 career tackles. He has made 201 tackles in 36 games. He has eight sacks in his career as well as 32.5 tackles for lost yardage.

A two-year captain, Dangerfield is a third-year starter at free safety. In 23 career games for Towson, he has also made 201 tackles.
After turning the ball over six times in a season-opening loss at Kent State, Towson did a much better job securing the football in its win over William & Mary. The Tigers had no turnovers against the Tribe although they did fumble twice. But, the Tigers recovered both fumbles.

Although the Tigers beat William & Mary by only three points, they dominated the game statistically. Towson had the ball for 35:52
while the Tigers had 422 total yards and allowed only 258 yards.

In their first two games, Towson has outgained its opponents, 753 yards to 525 yards.
TIGER TALES:  Saturday’s game is the second of three non-conference games on the Tigers’ schedule … Towson plays its final non-conference game of the season at Louisiana State next week.

When Towson rushed for 247 yards against William & Mary, it marked the 10th time in the last 13 games that the Tigers had more than 200 rushing yards in a game … In 2011, the Tigers ran for more than 200 yards in nine games … They averaged 229.0 rushing yards per game, a mark that led the CAA.

The Tigers’ win over William & Mary was their eighth victory in their last nine CAA games.

After Saturday’s game against St. Francis, the Tigers will play their next two games on the road … On Saturday, Sept. 29, Towson visits Louisiana State in a game that will be televised on ESPNU … On Saturday, Oct. 6, the Tigers face James Madison University on the road, a game that will be aired on the NBCSportsNetwork.

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Towson opens season Thursday at Kent State

Posted on 29 August 2012 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – For the fourth time in the last five seasons, the Towson University football team will open its season on the road against an NCAA FBS program when the Tigers travel to Kent State University on Thursday night to face the Golden Flashes at Dix Stadium at 7 p.m.

The Tigers’ season opener will be televised back to the Baltimore area on Comcast-Plus. Joe Beninati will call all the action from Kent State while Brad Jackson provides the color commentary.

The game will also be aired on the Tigers’ web site, www.TowsonTigers.com with Spiro Morekas and Ron Meehan calling the action.

The Tigers, who return eight starters on offense and six starters on defense, stunned the college football world last season with a historic turnaround. One year after finishing the season with a 1-10 record, the 2011 Tigers were one of the most improved teams in college football history as they won their first Colonial Athletic Association championship and finished the season with a 9-3 record.

However, the Tigers won’t surprise anyone this season. Towson is ranked among the top ten teams in nearly every FCS pre-season poll. The Tigers are ranked as high as fourth in the nation by Lindy’s. But, the consensus rates Towson anywhere from sixth to eighth in the nation. For the first time ever, Towson has been tabbed as the CAA pre-season favorite.

All the pre-season attention has created a different dilemma for Coach Rob Ambrose.

He says, “We have had to work hard to stay focused. Up until last season, all our players heard was how bad they were. That is easy to block out. Now, everybody wants to tell us how good we are. That is harder to ignore. But, we’ve been working since January to put last year in the past. We had a very good pre-season and I think we’re ready to go.”

For the first time since 2008, the Tigers enter the season with an established starter at quarterback. Senior Grant Enders started 11 games last season and won nine of them. He completed 165 of 245 passes for 2,081 yards and led the CAA with a 153.72 pass efficiency rating. Enders threw 16 touchdown passes with only eight interceptions.

Sophomore Terrance West,  a pre-season All-American, returns to lead the Tigers’ running game. Honored as the winner of the Jerry Rice Award as the top freshman in FCS football, West led the nation with 29 touchdowns scored while running for 1,294 yards. He averaged 6.7 yards per carry.

Junior tackle Eric Pike and junior center Doug Shaw are back to lead the offensive line. Pike was a third team All-CAA selection last season.

On defense, the Tigers will be relying on a pair of All-Americans, defensive end Frank Beltre and safety Jordan Dangerfield.

A third-year starter, Beltre made 68 tackles as a junior, fourth on the team. He also ranked third among CAA defensive linemen in tackles while making 12 tackles for lost yardage. He also had four sacks. In his career, he has made 196 tackles.

A two-year starter at safety, Dangerfield led the Tigers with 93 tackles last season despite missing two games with an injury. In two seasons with the Tigers, he has made 189 tackles. Last year, he also intercepted two passes, recovered two fumbles and forced a pair of fumbles.

Junior Jordan Love and sophomore Tye Smith will join Dangerfield in the secondary, along with sophomore safety Thomas Bradley.  Love is a transfer from the University of Georgia who has been impressive in the pre-season while Smith made 49 tackles and intercepted two passes last year.

Senior defensive end Romale Tucker and senior linebacker Danzel White also return as top defensive players. Tucker led all CAA defensive linemen with 73 tackles last season while White had 77 tackles in nine games.

Coach Ambrose is pleased with the progress the Tigers made during the pre-season. He says, “This is actually the first camp where the players actually knew what it took for us to win. Our players know how hard you have to work and they know how much discipline you need. For us, the biggest word has been focus. That has been the theme for us all during camp.”

Kent State, a member of the Mid-America Conference, posted a 5-7 record last season. However, the Golden Flashes won four of their final five games.

“This is an extremely good defensive team,” says Coach Ambrose. “They might have two NFL draft choices on that defensive unit. In fact, this might be the best defensive team that Towson has ever played.”

The Tigers, who are starting their 44th season of college football, have a 27-16 all-time record in season openers. However, the Tigers dropped season openers on the road, losing at Navy (41-13) in 2008, Northwestern (47-14) in 2009 and Indiana (51-17) in 2010.

By contrast, Kent State is opening its 90th season of college football.

Towson, which opened the 2011 season with a home win over Morgan State, is seeking its first season-opening win on the road since the 2004 season. In 2004, the Tigers beat Elon, 34-14.

After opening the season at Kent State, the Tigers will be off until Saturday, Sept. 15 when they host William & Mary in the Colonial Athletic Association opener for both teams at Johnny Unitas® Stadium at 12 noon. The game will be broadcast on NBC Sports.

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Towson conducts final preseason scrimmage

Posted on 22 August 2012 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – With just eight days remaining before their season opener at Kent State University, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Tiger football team ran through a light scrimmage at Johnny Unitas® Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

The Tigers, who held their annual Media Day in the morning, returned to Unitas Stadium in the afternoon for a 70-minute scrimmage. The Tigers ran about 55 plays from scrimmage and ran through some special teams plays.

“We wanted to come out here and give them a chance to run through some things,” said Coach Ambrose, who will be starting his fourth season as the Tigers’ coach next week. “We have some guys who are nicked up and we held them out of the scrimmage because we to get them ‘un-nicked.’ The next 24-to-48 hours are going to be crucial as we get ready for Kent State.”

Senior Grant Enders, the Tigers’ returning starter at quarterback, looked very sharp in Thursday’s scrimmage. He drove the offense to a pair of touchdowns and completed 9 of 11 passes for 121 yards and a touchdown.

On the opening drive, Enders led the Tigers on a 75-yard march in 10 plays. Sophomore All-AmericanTerrance West had four carries on the drive and picked up 30 yards. He also scored a touchdown on an eight-yard run.

Connor Frazier, a red-shirt freshman quarterback, led the Tigers on their second drive. After he completed a 27-yard pass to Mac Sanders, the drive stalled and Drew Evangelista punted.

Enders returned for the third series of the scrimmage. Starting from his own 10-yard line, he marched the offense down the field. On the second series, Enders completed five of six passes for 79 yards and tossed a 10-yard touchdown pass to Spencer Wilkins.

Wilkins was impressive in the scrimmage. He had three catches for 25 yards and a touchdown and he also had a 48-yard kickoff return.

On the fourth and final drive of the scrimmage, junior Peter Athens completed two passes to Arione Scott for 49 yards, setting up a 21-yard field goal by Evangelista.

After the fourth drive, the Tigers ran plays from specialty situations. Highlighting the specialty work was a 23-yard TD pass from Frazier to Scott.

Scott had three receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown during the scrimmage. Senior Erron Banks continued his solid pre-season by catching two passes for 32 yards while senior Tom Ryan had two catches for 22 yards.

The Tigers begin final preparations for Kent State on Thursday.

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