HUNTINGDON, Pa.- Visiting Moravian put up 667 yards of total offense with quarterback Mike Hayes passing for 516 yards as the Greyhounds took down Juniata 42-20 on Saturday afternoon at Knox Stadium. The loss drops the Eagles to 4-5 overall and 3-5 in the Centennial. Moravian ends its three-game winless streak and improves to 5-4 overall and 4-4 in the conference.
Moravian received the opening kickoff and used its no-huddle offense to march downfield. Hayes competed seven straight passes with the last going to Aaron Hudson for 19 yards and a touchdown to give the Hounds a 7-0 lead with the extra point at 12:25.
Juniata punted on its first drive. The Greyhounds went seven plays and 80 yards that ended in Roberto Diez taking it into the endzone from two yards out and with the extra point, Moravian led 14-10 with 8:10 to play in the opening quarter.
The Eagles were able to answer back on their ensuing drive. On third and five from its own 34, Hank Coyne (Royersford, Pa./Spring-Ford) completed a 10-yard pass to Kirby Breault (Elizabethtown, Pa./Elizabethtown) to give JC a first down at its own 444. On a first and 10 from the Moravian 46, Matt Lehr (Dover, Pa./York Catholic) rushed for 24 yards to the Hounds' 22. On another third down, this time from 10, Coyne found Aaron O'Brien (York, Pa./York Catholic) in the endzone for the score. Kevin Bonalle's (Lebanon, Pa/Cedar Crest) extra point made it 14-7 with 2:43 remaining in the first.
The Juniata defense was able to force a Moravian punt and get the ball back. Coyne converted a third and two to Breault for 22 yards to the Moravian 11. A six-yard completion to Aj Brocato (Abington, Md./Patterson Mills) moved JC to the Moravian 5. Breault caught a one-yard pass but Coyne's next pass attempt to O'Brien was incomplete. Bonalle came on and hit a 22-yard field goal to make it 14-10.
The Greyhounds expanded their lead to 21-10 with a Jorden Stout one-yard touchdown with 11:42 to go in the half. Moravian tacked on a Hayes-to-Kyle Ferryman 19-yard score with 5:19 to go in the second quarter to increase the Hound lead to 28-10.
JC countered as Lehr broke off a 43-yard run to the endzone to cut the Moravian lead to 28-17. The Greyhounds got the score back as Hayes threw to Hudson for 41 yards and a touchdown with 2:37 to play as the score stood at 35-17 in Moravian's favor at the half.
David Vidovic (Hohenfels, Germany/Hohenfels) took the second half kickoff 52 yards to set up the Eagles at the Moravian 39. The drive stalled as Moravian forced the Eagles to punt the ball away. After the defense came up with a big stop, Juniata began its second drive of the third on its own 10. A big Coyne-Vidovic 26-yard pass put Juniata at midfield. A Vidovic 31-yard burst brought the ball down to the Moravian 10. Two plays later, Lehr ran it in from one yard and with Bonalle's extra point, Juniata narrowed its deficit to 11 points, 35-24, with 5:48 to go in the third period.
Another defensive stand by the Eagles forced a Greyhounds punt and gave JC a chance to make it a one-score game. Vidovic's 14-yard reception on second and 10 at the JC 35 put the Eagles at near midfield. On the next play, Juniata tried some trickery as it attempted a halfback option. Vidovic's pass attempt was intercepted by Khali Raymond who returned it 20 yards to the Moravian 35. On the Greyhounds' first place from scrimmage, Hayes hooked up with Liam Nolan for a 65-yard touchdown and the Hound lead increased to 42-24 at 2:33.
With time winding down in the third quarter, Juniata pushed into Moravian territory thanks to a Coyne-to-Lehr 32-yard completion that put the Eagles on the Moravian 32. Following a Lehr three-yard run, Coyne scrambled for a seven-yard pickup to give JC at first down at the Greyhounds 22 to begin the fourth quarter. A Coyne 11-yard run gave the Eagles another first down to the Hounds 11. Breault's 10-yard catch moved possession to the one. Lehr then ran it in for the score and Bonalle's extra point brought the score to 42-30 at the 13:38 mark.
Both teams exchanged punts as the defenses held firm. After Moravian' second punt of the quarter, Juniata started at its own five with 5:13 remaining in the game. Coyne completed passes of 16 yards to Lehr, and seven, 17 yards, and nine yards to Jake Notestine (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin) to get the Eagles to just past midfield. Three straight incompletions, however, made it fourth and one at the Moravian 46. Lehr's 20-yard run gave Juniata a first down at the Moravian 26. After an incompletion to Breault, Coyne's next pass was tipped and intercepted by Moravian's Edward Delia at the 15. The Greyhounds ran out the clock to ice the game.
Lehr ran for 125 yards on the ground for his third 100-yard rushing performance of the season. His three touchdowns represented a career-high. He also caught three balls for 52 yards. Vidovic added 55 yards on nine carries and had two catches for 40 yards. He returned four kickoffs for 124 yards.
Coyne threw for 285 yards on 25-of-48 passing and tossed one touchdown pass. He was sacked and intercepted once. Breault grabbed six passes for 73 yards. O'Brien snagged six passes for 40 yards.
Mitchell Shober (Stevens, Pa./Cocalico) led the defense with 15 tackles which was a season-high. Anton Morrow (Boiling Springs, Pa./Boiling Springs) had a season and career-high 13 stops and broke up one pass.
Juniata rushed for 195 yards on the ground and averaged nearly six yards per carry. Total yards favored Moravian 667-480.
The Eagles wrap up the regular season next Saturday in Selinsgrove against Susquehanna for the annual Goalpost Game. Kickoff will be at 1:00 p.m.