Urbana University’s football team will step out of conference play in Week 6 for an in-state matchup against Lake Erie College. The Blue Knights are looking to erase a three-game slide, and both teams enter the contest 1-4 on the season. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Jack Britt Memorial Stadium in Painesville, Ohio.
Lake Erie captured the only previous meeting between the two schools on Oct. 24, 2009, when the Storm came out on top 20-6 over the Blue Knights. That game was also played in Painesville.
UU will be glad to hit the road on Saturday, a week after being shut out at home for the second time this season. The Blue Knights were limited to an historic low minus-three yards of total offense in a 6-0 loss to Fairmont State.
In two road games, the outcome has been much brighter for UU, though.
UU is 1-1 in those games, averaging 21 points per game, and has outgained its opponents 866 yards to 733. In fact, the Blue Knights have scored their only points on offense in the two road games. Two weeks ago, UU racked up 493 yards on offense at West Liberty, but scored only 12 points.
On Saturday, early points will be key for UU’s path to success.
The Blue Knights have been outscored 76-7 in the first half this season, including 52-0 in the second quarter.
But the problems haven’t been on the defensive side of the ball, as UU is currently minus seven in the turnover category.
Junior Eric Pelfrey remains the starter under center for UU and is set to make his third career start against the Storm. Pelfrey took over for the injured Cale Burdyshaw last week, and struggled mightily throwing for just 24 yards on six completions with an interception. He was also sacked four times.
Wideouts Trevon Saunders and Karim Jones Jr. each have a team-high 20 catches, going for 414 yards and 176 yards, respectively. Saunders has been UU’s big-play threat and leads the Blue Knights with two touchdowns.
On the ground, running back Ben Sasu has gained a team-high 197 yards and has one rushing touchdown.
Defensively, the Blue Knights are producing solid numbers led by the linebacker corps. D’Gary Wallace is the Mountain East Conference leader in tackles with 69 (13.8/game), including a game-high 18 defensive stops last week. Kevin Chapple ranks third in the MEC with 12.5 tackles for loss and Bo Keener is fourth in total tackles with 52 (10.4).
Scouting Lake Erie
Lake Erie is coached by Mark McNellie, who is now in his ninth year since starting the Lake Erie program in 2006. The Storm are coming off a 48-26 setback at Ohio Dominican last week, and are giving up 50.8 points per game this season. Lake Erie’s lone win came on Sept. 19 in overtime at Walsh, 34-33.
Running back Anthony Bilal leads the way with six touchdowns, while averaging 7.0 yards per carry and 190.3 yards per game on the ground.