October 1, 2011

Old-fashioned shootout

O'Melia grabs eight passes for 203

WESTMINSTER, Md. – Gettysburg rolled up 676 yards of total offense as part of a game that featured 1,140 yards and 81 points, defeating McDaniel 44-37 in Centennial Conference (CC) football action on Saturday.

Nick O'Melia (Taneytown, Md./Francis Scott Key) caught eight passes for the Green Terror (1-4, 1-3 CC), accounting for 203 of Nick Valori's (Sewell, N.J./Washington Twp.) 329 passing yards. For O'Melia, he was the first receiver to reach 200 yards receiving since 2003 while Valori had the first 300-yard passing game since 2002. O'Melia also caught all three of Valori's touchdown tosses.

Aden Twer had a 200-yard receiving day of his own for the Bullets (3-2, 3-1 CC), catching seven passes for 214 yards and two touchdowns. Ted Delia and Kyle Whitmoyer both had 100 yards on the ground. Delia went for 109 while Whitmoyer had 100.

After a relatively slow start, the teams combined for 38 points in a 4-minute, 59-second span.

With the Bullets on top 7-0 after a Whitmoyer one-yard run with 9:53 to play in the first quarter that capped a 7-play, 96-yard drive that took just 1:42, Jake Nichols (Frederick, Md./Gov. Thomas Johnson) converted a 36-yard field goal with 4:50 to play in the period that started the true shootout.

Gettysburg countered with a 37-yard Rob Pennella field goal 2:03 later before a Donny Sherman (Darlington, Md./Havre de Grace) 64-yard kickoff return gave McDaniel the ball at the Bullet 24.

Valori hit Woody Butler (Smithsburg, Md./Middletown) for a 23-yard gain and Joe Rollins (Temple Hills, Md./Surrattsville) pounded it for the final yard and a 10-all game with 2:08 showing.

Two plays later Kody Smith found Aden Twer for 53 yards and a 17-10 lead with 1:23 to play.

On the first play of the second quarter, Valori connected with O'Melia for 54 yards and a score to cap a 3-play, 70-yard march.

On the ensuing Gettysburg possession, the Green Terror forced a fumble on its own 20-yard line to thwart another scoring threat and the teams combined for just four first downs the remainder of the first half.

McDaniel took the opening possession of the second half 56 yards in four plays and Rollins capped it with it a one-yard run to take a 24-17 lead with 13:24 to play in the third quarter.

Gettysburg needed 3:36 to march 10 plays and 50 yards for a tie game on a Whitmoyer nine-yard run.

Valori and O'Melia once again hooked up – this time for 56 yards and a touchdown with 3:28 to play. The ensuing PAT was blocked after a delay of game penalty to keep it a 30-24 game.

An 18-yard connection between Whitmoyer and John Pesce and Pennella's PAT gave the visitors a 31-30 lead with 23 seconds remaining.

Whitmoyer took off for 47 yards but the extra point failed to return the advantage to seven with 8:03 showing in the fourth quarter.

Valori and O'Melia weren't done, however. The two connected for a third score from 36 yards out with 6:38 on the clock.

Completions of 41 and 33 around a Freddy Caurso six-yard run accounted for a 3-play, 80-yard drive that used just 47 seconds for the final margin with 1:50 to play.

Valori had moved the Green Terror to the Gettysburg 28 before the Bullets' Tyler Fasanella forced and recovered a fumble that was ruled as such after a lengthy discussion by the officials.

The Bullets took over with 22.8 seconds and were able to take two knees and escape with their first victory over McDaniel in three seasons.

Rollins finished with his fourth 100-yard rushing game of the season, racking up 145 yards on 34 carries.

Tim McLister (Leesburg, Va./Loudoun) finished with 10 tackles and an interception.

McDaniel has next week off before returning to action at home against Franklin & Marshall on Oct. 15. Game time is 12 p.m.

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