Towson tries to bounce back with visit to Albany Saturday

October 18, 2013 | WNST Staff


Tigers Seeking To Bounce Back From First Loss Of Season

TOWSON, Md. –  Coming off their first loss of the season, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team will be trying to pull out a victory when the seventh-ranked Tigers (6-1, 2-1) travel to Albany (1-6, 0-3) to face the Great Danes in a Colonial Athletic Association contest on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 3:30 p.m.

The game will be broadcast back to the Baltimore area on with Spiro Morekas, Ron Meehan and Zack Maskavich calling the action.

The Tigers, who had their 10-game winning streak snapped by Villanova last week, will be trying to avoid the slow starts that have plagued them in their last three games. Last week, the Tigers spotted Villanova a 21-0 lead before falling, 45-35. Two weeks ago, New Hampshire grabbed a 20-3 lead in the first quarter before the Tigers rallied for a 44-38 win. In late September, the Tigers had to rally from a 14-0 first quarter deficit to beat Stony Brook, 35-21.

“Everything is a learning experience and I think we learned a lot from the loss to Villanova,” says Coach Ambrose. “I have never seen a first half like the one we played against Villanova. We ran only 11 plays and trailed by 38-14 at halftime. I give our players a lot of credit for the way they battled back to make a game out of it.”

Although the Tigers saw their 10-game winning streak ended by Villanova, they have won seven consecutive road games. In fact, Towson has won eight of its last nine CAA road games dating back to the 2011 season.

Towson started its school-record road winning streak on Oct. 27, 2012 with a 49-35 win at Villanova. Since then, the Tigers have picked up wins at Delaware, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Holy Cross, North Carolina Central and Stony Brook.

The Tiger offense, which is ranked 10th in NCAA FCS, enters the Albany game averaging 40.8 points per game. The Tigers are also second in the CAA in total offense, averaging 465.9 yards per game. The Tiger offensive line has done a terrific job protecting senior quarterback Peter Athens (Huntingtown H.S./Huntingtown, Md.). Athens has only been sacked three times in seven games.

Athens, who ranks fifth in the CAA in passing efficiency, has completed 122 of 195 passes for 1,687 yards and 10 touchdowns. Junior Spencer Wilkins (Mount Hebron H.S./Ellicott City, Md.) and senior Leon Kinnard (Loyola H.S./Reisterstown, Md.) are tied for the team receiving lead. Wilkins has caught 31 passes for 533 yards and three touchdowns while Kinnard has 31 receptions for 442 yards and one touchdown.

The Tiger offense is led by junior Terrance West (Northwestern H.S./Baltimore, Md.). The leading rusher in the CAA, West has rushed for 947 yards in seven games, a 135.3 average. He has topped the 100-yard rushing mark in five games and has been named as the CAA Offensive Player of the Week three times.

With 17 touchdowns in seven games, he leads NCAA FCS.

West is the second-leading rusher in Towson history. In 28 games, he has rushed for 3,287 yards on 558 carries. In his career, he has scored 60 rushing touchdowns and has a total of 61 touchdowns.

The winner of the Jerry Rice Award as a freshman, he is one of the leading candidates for the Walter PaytonAward.

Senior linebacker Telvion Clark (Granby H.S./Norfolk, Va.) leads the Tigers with 64 tackles. He ranks fifth in the CAA.

Towson will be facing Albany for the fifth time ever. However, this is the first time that the teams have met as conference rivals. The Great Danes are first-year members of the CAA.

Towson and Albany have split their four-game series. The home team has won each game. The Tigers won the most recent meeting, a 35-16 victory in 2004.

After playing at Albany this week, the Tigers return to action on Saturday, Oct. 26 when they visit Richmond for a 12 noon game.