Louisville Leopards at Salem Quakers 2014 Football Preview
Louisville Leopards (2-1) at Salem Quakers (2-1)
SPREAD: Louisville By 23 (According to Drew Pasteur’s Fantastic 50)
WHEN: Friday, September 19 at 7:00 PM
WHERE: Reilly Stadium (Click for Directions)
RADIO: WSOM – 600 AM (Salem Radio)
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 6-2, but the series is an even 2-2 at Salem.
LAST MEETING: The Leopards defeated the Quakers 41-28 back on September 20, 2013 at Louisville Leopards Stadium.
LAST MEETING AT SALEM: The Leopards won at Salem 43-26 back on October 19, 2012.
LAST QUAKERS VICTORY: Salem last defeated Louisville 34-13 back on September 22, 1928.
|1||at Canfield||W 24-7||at Mineral Ridge||W 28-7|
|2||at Hoover||L 14-17||at United Local||L 26-34|
|3||Ravenna||W 40-6||East Liverpool||W 39-7|
|6||West Branch||10/3||at Minerva||10/4|
|9||Alliance||10/24||at Canton South||10/24|
|10||Canton South||10/31||at West Branch||10/31|
Both teams are 2-1 coming into this contest. The Quakers have a lot to prove as they open up league play losing 13 of their last 14 conference games. Salem has not defeated Louisville since Calvin Coolidge was President as they have dropped their past 5 meetings against the Leopards since 1992. The Leopards are looking to defend their 2013 NBC Title one week at a time starting Friday. Louisville has won their past 7 NBC games.
The Louisville Offense is averaging 331 Yards (178 Rushing, 153 Passing) and 26 Points Per Contest. Nearly all of the offensive plays have gone through Senior Quarterback Connor Zwick and Senior Runningback Walter Schrock. Schrock leads the team in rushing with 37 carries for 336 yards (9.1 yards per attempt) and 4 touchdowns. He has the ability to cut and take the ball to the house any time he touches it. 182 of the remaining 193 yards on the ground for the Leopards have been tallied by Zwick who is averaging 5.5 yards per attempt with a single touchdown last week against Ravenna.
Zwick has also made an impact in the passing game as he is 40 of 63 (63.5%) for 442 yards and 5 touchdowns verses 3 interceptions. His favorite target has been Kyle Woost who has made a team-high 14 catches for 94 yards and 2 touchdowns. Few secondaries can out-jump Ryan Lautner (6’4, 180) as he has made 8 grabs for a team-high 116 yards and 1 touchdown. When Louisville gets closer to the endzone look for Zwick to pass to the sure hands of Alec Jones who has made 7 catches for 100 yards and has made a team-high 3 touchdown receptions. Josh Swanson is also dangerous in open space and has made 4 catches for 94 yards and Tyler Adams has also caught 3 passes for 43 yards.
The Leopards Defense is allowing just 203 Yards (98 Rushing, 105 Passing) and 10 Points Per Game this season. Opposing Quarterbacks should be wary of Defensive Back Joe Crank who hauled in his second interception of the season last week against the Ravens. They should also look out for Louisville’s Jake Mathie (17 Tackles, 10 Solo Tackles, 1 Tackle for Loss), Stephen Kerzan (16 Tackles, 11 Solo Tackles, 1 Fumble Recovery, 1 Interception), and Dalton Deckerd (11.5 Tackles, 1 Tackle For Loss, 1 Sack) when throwing into the secondary.
Runners have had trouble getting past Linebacker Kyle Ashcraft (21 Tackles, 10 Solo Tackles, 1 Tackle for Loss) who has the most tackles on the team. Alongside him in the Linebacking Core is Casey Nau (13.5 Tackles, 3 Tackles for Loss, 1 Fumble Recovery). Up Front, Frankie Falcone has been an unstoppable force (10.5 Tackles, 3 Sacks) along with Daichi Castles (12.5 Tackles, 1 Tackle for Loss, 1 Forced Fumble), Tanner Brahler (5 Tackles, 1 Sack), and Marco Buccasso (4 Tackles, 1 Fumble Recovery).
On Special Teams, Kicker Austin Terra has been reliable making 9 of 10 extra points and he also made a 20 yard field goal in the opener at Canfield. Terra just missed what would have been a school record 47-yard field goal last week against the Ravens. This length matched his maximum range during the preseason. Zwick has averaged 31.3 yards on 9 punts this year and has booted 4 punts inside the 20. Since he is a Running Quarterback don’t be surprised if Louisville runs a fake punt with him before the season ends. Adams has stepped up as the Leopards leading return man averaging 26.3 yards on 3 kick returns with a long of 38. Crank has also averaged 5.3 yards on 3 punt returns. Woost and Mathie have seen action in the return game as well.
The Salem Offense averaged 430 Yards (221 Rushing, 209 Passing) and 31 Points Per Game during their 3 out of conferences contests. Quarterback Matt Weingart commands the attack and has completed 48 of 71 passes (68%) for 628 yards and 4 touchdowns so far this season. His top targets include Receiver Blake Hochadel (16 Catches, 191 Yards, 1 Touchdown), Runningback Kade Byland (13 Catches, 103 Yards, 1 Touchdown), and Tight End Jake Humeniul (7 Catches, 185 Yards, 1 Touchdown). Byland is a dual threat and has been effective on the ground as well this season (38 Carries, 214 Yards, 4 Touchdowns). He, along with the Quakers top rusher Cooper Bezeredi (26 Carries, 363 Yards, 5 Touchdowns), have provided a consistent combination in the Salem backfield.
On Defense, the Quakers have allowed 213 Yards (144 Rushing, 69 Passing) and 16 Points Per Contest this year. Defensive Lineman Jesse Slocum has been a menace for Salem’s opposition with 28 Tackles, 2 Sacks, 5 Tackles for a Loss, and 1 Safety. Defensive Back Jake Bezon (33 Tackles, 1 Tackle for Loss) and Linebacker Josh Campbell (33 Tackles, 1 Tackle for Loss) have been called by the PA announcer the most this season for the Quakers as well. Defensive Back Lex Murray has also recorded 2 interceptions and Linebacker Andrew Irwin always seems to be in the right place at the right time (2 Fumble Recoveries, 1 Fumble Recovery Touchdown, 1 Interception). Salem has forced 9 turnovers (3 Interceptions, 9 Fumble Recoveries) on defense this season.
Key Offensive players have also made their impact on Special Teams. Weingart has averaged 39.6 yards on 3 punts this season and Bezeredi has averaged 25.5 yards on 4 kickoff returns this year. Kicker Braydon Gibson has successfully converted 5 extra point kicks as well.