WOMEN'S INTERHALL BLUE LEAGUE: Veselik, Ducks stamp out Crime
By AARON RONSHEIM and MATT DeNICOLA
On a rain-drenched Sunday afternoon at McGlinn Fields, the Howard Ducks defeated Off-Campus Crime 18-0 Sunday.
Judging by the team's success in inclement weather Sunday, the Ducks didn't mind the rain at all.
"We were definitely in our element," said Howard junior Jenna Spanbauer.
Howard evened its record at 1-1 while Off-Campus dropped to 0-2 on the year.
One of the keys to Howard's win was the play of Jill Veselik who returned to the Ducks roster this year despite moving off campus.
Veselik completed 7-15 passes with two touchdowns. She also had one rushing touchdown and added one reception.
"I am really happy with the way we played," Veselik said. "The coaches did a great job play calling today."
"She is definitely our leader," running back Katie Crawly said. "She sees the field so well and keeps the defense off-balanced. We are so glad she came back for one more year."
After a slow start, the Howard offense began to click. On its third possession Veselik hit Crawly on a swing pass. Crawly turned a five-yard pass into a 50-yard touchdown as she sprinted down the sideline past Off-Campus defenders for 6-0 lead. Howard failed on the one-point conversion.
The Ducks opened the second half with an impressive four-play scoring drive.
The drive was capped by an impressive 30-yard scramble by Veselik. After being surrounded by Off-Campus defenders she escaped down the right sideline then cut all the way across the field to evade defenders as she sprinted into the end zone just inside the left pile-on.
"It was amazing." Crawly said. "She does everything for us."
Howard added another touchdown on a 15-yard pass from Veselik to freshman Megan O'Keefe.
Veselik overshadowed a great performance by the Ducks' defense. The Ducks' defense didn't even let Off-Campus cross into its territory, and Off-Campus quarterback Abby Ross was 3-11 with two interceptions.
"With the way our defense played it makes my job look easier," said Howard defensive coordinator Chris McBride.
Lewis 0, Walsh 0
The defenses can rest now and the offenses can get to work.
Forty minutes went by in Sunday's game between Lewis and Walsh, which ended in a 0-0 tie. There were two halves, four quarters and countless unsuccessful drives toward the end zone. But in the end, the scoreboard did not change.
Coming into the game, neither team knew what to expect from the other.
"They played a different offensive set than we had ever seen," said Lewis captain Caitlin Murry. "It took just short of a full set to get used to it."
The story was the same with the Wild Women.
"The defense really stepped up," said Captain Alison Troy. "It really was a battle."
In the beginning of the game, the Walsh offense came out firing, and the intensity did not let up. In the second half, the Wild Women drove the ball right to the goal line, threatening to score. With four downs to score, Walsh looked certain to put points on the board. However, Lewis' goal line defense prevented the score.
"We really put up a fight on that goal line stand," said Murry. "That was really key."
Lewis played tough third down defense. On one drive, the Lewis freshman inside linebacker made a huge stop on third and short, which forced the fourth down.
"I think that was the turning point," Murry said. "It seemed to spark our defense and discourage their offense."
Despite the innumerable stops the Chicks made, they were unable to score. The execution from Lewis was off throughout the game.
"When the quarterbacks were on, the receivers were off, and vice-versa," said Murry. "It was just that kind of day."
But, credit the faltering offense to the Walsh defense. The cornerbacks stayed tight with the receivers, the rushers put constant pressure on the quarterback, and the linemen rarely let a rush slip through.
"It was a big day for the defense," said Troy.
Despite the lack of offense, neither team was disappointed with their performance.
"I was happy with our performance," said Murry. "We were just on the verge of pushing through ... hopefully we can get on track."
All Sports Stories for Tuesday, September 25, 2001