Louisville Leopards at Marlington Dukes 2016 Football Preview
SPREAD: Marlington By 8 (According to Drew Pasteur’s Fantastic 50)
WHEN: Friday, September 30 at 7:00 PM
WHERE: Marlington Stadium
HIGHLIGHTS: Will be available following the game late Friday night or early Saturday morning right here on louisvilleleopards.org
ALL-TIME SERIES: Louisville leads the all-time series 43-5
LAST MEETING: The Leopards defeated the Dukes 47-7 at Louisville Leopards Stadium back on October 2, 2015.
LAST MEETING AT MARLINGTON: The Leopards won 54-14 over the Dukes at Marlington Stadium back on October 17, 2014.
LAST DUKES WIN: The Dukes last defeated the Leopards 34-24 back on September 14, 2012.
|Louisville Schedule||Marlington Schedule|
|1||at Canfield||W 21-17||Poland||W 35-21|
|2||at Hoover||L 21-24||at Ravenna||W 32-23|
|3||Austintown Fitch||L 0-26||at St. Thomas Aquinas||W 20-17|
|4||Alliance||W 34-0||Carrollton||W 55-13|
|5||Minerva||W 53-0||at Salem||W 42-14|
|7||West Branch||10/7||at Canton South||10/7|
|9||at Salem||10/21||West Branch||10/21|
|10||Canton South||10/28||at Alliance||10/28|
The Leopards have produced 315 yards (187 passing, 127 rushing) and 26 points per contest this year, while allowing 243 yards (131 passing, 112 rushing) and 13 points per game this season. Louisville has outscored opponents 88-64 in the first half and have dominated the opposition in the second half 41-3. It will be important for the Leopards to jump on the Dukes early on.
The Louisville offense has been very balanced this season rushing the ball 141 times while passing it 133 times. The majority of those snaps have gone through Quarterback Brody Hahn who is the team’s leader in rushing (62 carries, 292 yards, 3 touchdowns) and passing (71 of 132 for 936 yards, 9 touchdowns, 8 interceptions). Runningback Gavin VanZant (48 carries, 171 yards, 3 touchdowns) has improved each game and will be a big key to the Leopards success if he can run on the Marlington defense that has given up 141 yards on the ground per contest.
Hahn has plenty of options to throw to in the receiving core including his top target Tyler Adams (33 catches, 454 yards, 1 touchdown). Ten different Louisville players have caught passes this season including other leaders in Max Hartline (14 catches, 234 yards, 1 touchdown), Logan Thomas (7 catches, 118 yards, 1 touchdown), and Jack Davis (5 catches, 58 yards, 1 touchdown).
Leopards Defensive Back Corey White (20.5 tackles , 2 fumble recoveries, 3 interceptions) has recorded half of the team’s takeaways on defense. He is accompanied in the secondary by Gavin Birone (18.5 tackles, 1 force fumble, 4 pass break-ups), Cole Weston (18 tackles, 3 pass break-ups), Jared Mathie (12.5 tackles, 2 force fumbles, 1 fumble recovery, 1 pass break-up), and Sean McKinney (14 tackles, 1 pass break-up).
Cade Stertzbach (20 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 3 sacks) leads the team in sacks, while Drew Doerschuk (22 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 sack, 1 interception) leads the defensive line in tackles, Sophomore Maverick Pugh (13.5 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 1 fumble recovery, 2 pass break-ups) has stepped up big and Dillon Deckerd (12 tackles, 1 tackle for loss) has also been solid upfront.
Louisville Linebacker Justin Vanover (44 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass break-up) leads the team in both tackles and tackles for a loss. His counterpart Casey Nau (39 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass break-up) is a close second in both categories and was named defensive player of the week against Minerva.
On special teams, Hartline (4 returns, 35.5 avg.) returned a kickoff 84 yards for a touchdown last week against Minerva. It was the first Leopards kickoff return for a touchdown since Andy Minster took an 88 yard kick return to the house in the 2013 regular season finale at Canton South. He has split kickoffs with Adams (4 returns, 19.8 avg.) and Mathie (2 returns, 19.0 avg.). Adams (5 returns, 4.8 avg.) has taken all 5 punt returns this season for Louisville as well.
Placekicker Hannah Baughman made history last Friday in becoming the first female to make a field goal at Louisville Leopards Stadium. Baughman has scored 19 points for the Leopards the season and has been accurate on 16 of 17 extra point attempts. On kickoffs, Austin Terra had the Lions return game scrambling last week to just field the ball.
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The Marlington Dukes have averaged 415 yards (234 passing, 181 rushing) and 37 points per game this season, while allowing 287 yards (146 passing, 141 rushing) and 18 points per contest. Marlington currently has a +5 turnover margin this season giving the ball up 7 times (4 fumbles lost, 3 interceptions) and taking it away 12 times (9 fumbles recovered, 3 interceptions).
The Dukes have a Senior-laden lineup on offense led by Quarterback Chris Pennell (77 of 118 for 1,120 yards, 8 touchdowns, 3 interceptions) and Runningback Jaquiez Sampson (104 carries, 701 yards, 15 touchdowns rushing; 10 catches, 182 yards, 1 touchdown receiving).
Pennell has several weapons at wide receiver including Sean Cooley (18 catches, 228 yards, 1 touchdown), Brock Himmelheber (15 catches, 209 yards, 2 touchdowns), and Justin Allen (17 catches, 196 yards, 2 touchdowns receiving, 31 carries, 142 yards, 3 touchdowns rushing). Tight End Andrew Brady (11 catches, 217 yards, 2 touchdowns) has also been a key player in the Marlington passing game.
The strength of the Dukes defense lies within its linebacker core. Garrett Pierce (26 tackles, 3 tackles for loss) leads the team in tackles and Trent Davis (13 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 3 fumble recoveries) has been a takeaway machine. Other leaders at linebacker include Justin Allen (20 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 interception), Travis Wainuskis (18 tackles, 3 tackles for loss), Drew Adams (9 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 1 sack), and Corey Hicks (4 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 sack, 1 fumble recovery).
Senior Mar Mason (22 tackles, 5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 1 fumble recovery) anchors the Marlington defensive line alongside Austin Carper (8 tackles, 2 tackles for loss). The Dukes secondary is led by Brock Himmelheber (14 tackles, 2 tackles for loss), Drew Anderson (13 tackles, 1 fumble recovery), and Blane Himmelheber (10 tackles, 1 fumble recovery).
On special teams, Cooley has made 15 of 16 extra points so far this season.
Marlington did not reply to Leopard Nation’s stat request. These stats may not be completely up to date as a result.