Last updated: September 07. 2013 12:53AM - 163 Views
By DAVE ROSENGRANT drosengrant@timesleader.com

King's quarterback Tyler Hartranft hopes to lead the Monarchs to a a season-opening victory this afternoon against William Paterson.
King's quarterback Tyler Hartranft hopes to lead the Monarchs to a a season-opening victory this afternoon against William Paterson.
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William Paterson at King’s

When: 1 p.m. today at McCarthy Stadium, Wilkes-Barre Twp.

Last year’s records: King’s 2-8; William Paterson 5-5

Last meeting: The Pioneers won last season’s game, 9-3

King’s player to watch: Left tackle Mike Clausen, who towers at 6-foot-5, 325-pounds. He’s a 23-year-old freshman from Denmark that is starting because normal starter Kyle Grampp is sidelined with an injury. If he shows he can handle the position, he could see more time at other positions.

William Paterson player to watch: Quarterback Ryan Gresik is in his fourth year as starter and fourth year playing against the Monarchs. In his three previous contests versus King’s he’s piled up 351 passing yards with one TD and no interceptions. He’s also hurt the team on the ground rushing for just 31 yards, but had a TD on the ground in 2010.

Monarchs’ 2012 returning team leaders: RB Kyle McGrath 960 yards, 8 TD; QB Tyler Hartranft 1,806 yards, 10 TD, 11 int, 51.1 pct; WR Dan Kempa 31 rec, 648 yards, 4 TD; DB Kris Matthews 2 int; 78 tackles; LB Jake Ksiazkiewicz 4 sacks, 71 tackles; DE Ron Garrett 4.5 sacks

Pioneers’ 2012 returning team leaders: RB Isaac Jlaka 500 yards, 5 TD; QB Ryan Gresik 2,097 yards, 13 TD, 7 int; WR Mick Paye , 39 rec, 553 yards, 4 TD; DL Webb Greer 3 sacks; DB Andre Snead 2 int, 1 TD

King’s will win if: The defense holds Paterson in check like it has the previous three times in the series and the offense comes to life earlier than it did in the 2012 season.

William Paterson will win if: Its defense continues to make big plays late against the Monarchs like it has the last three meetings.

What to know: This is the fifth straight year the teams are playing, a rarity for non-conference opponents to meet this often. Even stranger is the previous four games are the only times the programs have ever met. The last three have been decided by a total of 19 points.

Gettysburg at Misericordia

When: 1 p.m. today at Mangelsdorf Field, Dallas

Last year’s records: Gettysburg 7-3; Misericordia 0-10

Last meeting: The Bullets won last season’s game, 70-0

Misericordia player to watch: Juwan Petties-Jackson, who did everything for the Cougars last season with 554 all-purpose yards running, receiving, returning and playing defense.

Gettysburg player to watch: Receiver Aden Twer begins the campaign on the school’s all-time top 10 in career yards sixth, 1,429), receptions (eighth, 78) and touchdowns (tied for second, 16).

Cougars’ 2012 returning team leaders: RB Frank Santarsiero 166 yards, 1 TD; RB Robin Custodio 234 yards; QB Jeff Puckett 625 yards, 4 TD, 6 int; WR Kurt Kowalski 12 receptions; WR Tyler Rowe 96 yards; DL Greg Zotian 20 tackles, 2 sacks; LB Hunter Pates 50 tackles; DB Ben Camacho 42 tackles, 1 int.

Bullets’ 2012 returning team leaders: RB Eddie Hutchins 491 yards, 5 TD; WR Aden Twer 22 rec, 350 yards, 4 TD; LB Cody DiAmore 87 tackles, 3 int; DB Gordon Prince 39 tackles, blocked kick, interception.

Misericordia will win if: it can slow down the Bullets’ powerful Spread Wing attack offense, which piled up 37.5 points per game in 2012.

Gettysburg will win if: junior quarterback Zach Miller, who is making his first collegiate start, doesn’t get rattled by the Misericordia defense, which now has a year in the new system and is looking for revenge.

What to know: The Bullets’ 7-3 record last year was their best record since finishing 8-2 in 1994.

William Paterson football made national headlines last week when four players went into a closed store in New Jersey not knowing the establishment wasn’t open because the door was unlocked. The players continued to pick up the items they needed and when no employee showed up, they left money for the products with the acts of kindness being caught on camera.

This afternoon, those players and the rest of the Pioneers travel to Wilkes-Barre Township to face King’s in the season-opener for both teams at McCarthy Stadium as the Monarchs look to make headlines of their own — which they would do with a win to start 1-0 for the first time since 2009.

The squads are familiar with each other as they are squaring off for the fifth straight season. While the Pioneers have won the previous four games, every contest has been close.

“We looked at the film from last year and we just open up and you never know what people have done to improve you just have go forward and have an idea of what you’re going to see and what to expect,” King’s coach Jeff Knarr said.

King’s is hoping to build off the end of 2012 when it scored 85 points in its last three games. There was only one win in that period for the Monarchs, but the fact that they were scoring more is a positive. Especially since every time they have played Paterson the Monarchs haven’t scored more than seven points, while not allowing more than 14 the previous three games. In 2012 against WP, King’s had its best chance to win moving the ball well, but missed several opportunities.

“The one thing is trying to build off the success we had at the end of the year and last year against these guys we had success moving the ball,” Knarr added. “It’s a confidence thing that they’ve had some success and they can build on that.”

Misericordia starts second season

Year two of the Misericordia football program begins this afternoon at 1 when the Cougars host Gettysburg in a rematch of the inaugural game in Misericordia history one year ago. That game was won by the potent Bullets offense, 70-0.

Here’s a closer look at this afternoon’s matchup.

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