BETHLEHEM, Pa. --- Moravian College is continuing its look back at its 2017-18 athletic campaign. The next event in the Top 10 Exciting Games from the past year selected by the athletic administration is our No. 7 highlight – the football team earning a 20-17 win at Juniata College on a field goal in the final five seconds.
The Greyhounds traveled to Huntingdon on Saturday, October 21 for a Centennial Conference match-up with the Eagles that was eventually won on a career-long 34-yard field goal by junior Jon Miller, who made field goals in the final 15 seconds of each half.
Moravian's defense made a fourth down stop to start the contest, and the Hounds' offense drove 70 yards in eight plays to take a 7-0 lead with 7:19 to play in the first quarter. Freshman quarterback Doug Erney found senior tight end Aaron Brown with a 19-yard touchdown pass on a third-and-12 play. Miller drilled the extra-point for the Blue and Grey.
Juniata answered back to tie the game at 7-7 on the next possession. The game remained that way until late in the second quarter in part because of two interceptions by freshman defensive back Jackson Buskirk. Buskirk returned the second interception 36 yards to set up the Hounds' offense at the Juniata 44-yard line late in the second quarter. After a rush by Erney, he connected on passes with Brown and senior wide receiver Aaron Hudson to move to the one-yard line. Unable to punch the ball across the goal line, Moravian retook the lead, 10-7, on an 18-yard field goal by Miller with 12 seconds until halftime.
Juniata nearly took the lead on the final play of the first half but junior defensive back Nick Zambelli came up with the Greyhounds' third interception off the half, this one in the end zone.
The Eagles kicked a field goal with 6:18 left in the third quarter to knot the score, and Juniata would move ahead 17-10 with 11:33 left in the contest. Each team would punt on their next possession after the Eagles took the lead.
Moravian took possession at its own 21-yard line with 5:56 remaining and took five plays to find the end zone with Erney completing a 20-yard pass to freshman wide receiver Ricky Tate, Erney finding sophomore Alex Pierce with a 41-yard completion, junior running back Eli Redmond running for two yards and Erney hitting Tate with an 18-yard touchdown pass. Miller split the uprights again to knot the contest at 17-17 with 4:04 on the clock.
Juniata drove down into Moravian territory and faced a fourth-and-six play. The Eagles completed a short pass but Greyhound sophomore defensive back Tim Valentine came up with the tackle after five yards to give the Hounds the ball on the Juniata 27-yard line with 59 ticks on the clock.
Erney started the game-winning drive with a 23-yard quarterback draw to midfield. Erney then connected on a seven-yard pass with Pierce before runs of 13 and four yards by Erney moved the ball to the 26-yard line. Erney completed one more pass to Pierce for three yards before the Hounds used their second timeout of the half. Erney ran for another six yards and a first down at the Juniata 17-yard line before Moravian called its final timeout to set up Miller for a career-long 34-yard field goal attempt with eight seconds left. Just before the ball was snapped on the field, the Eagles called their final timeout to try and ice Miller.
After the second 30-second break, Miller calmly split the uprights off of a hold from senior quarterback Kordell Theadford and snap from junior defensive lineman Nick Tone to give the Hounds a 20-17 lead. Juniata would run out of time on the ensuing kickoff to give Moravian the victory.
Read the original game story at http://moraviansports.com/sports/fball/2017-18/releases/20171021pve2qp with links to stats and video.
The number six highlight in the Top 10 Exciting Games of 2017-18 will be released on Monday, June 18.