March 29, 2014

Blue Team Wins Spring Game

INDIANAPOLIS, IND. - The Butler Spring Football Game turned into a back-and-forth contest, but the Bulldogs' defensive unit eventually emerged with a 55-48 victory at the Butler Bowl on Saturday.  The intersquad game closed Butler's four weeks of spring football drills.

The Spring Game featured Butler's offensive unit against the Bulldogs' defensive squad and was played under a special scoring system.  The offensive team received points for touchdowns (6), extra points (1), two-point conversions (2), field goals (1-3 points depending on distance), first downs (1), pass plays of 25+ yards (2), rushing plays of 25+ yards (2) and fourth down conversions (2).

The defense was awarded points for a takeaway (3), takeaway with touchdown (9), blocked/missed PAT (1), stop two-point conversion (1), defensive two-point conversion (2), three-and-out (3), drive stop (1), sack (2), tackle for loss (2) and fourth down stop (2).

Defensive back Justin Crull and linebacker David Starkey paced a balanced defensive effort with six tackles apiece, while linebacker Jordan Massey and defensive back David Leach each added five stops.  Ryan Donohue and Sean Horan came up with fumble recoveries, while Zach LaRoche recorded a pass interception.  Linebacker Nick Merlina was credited with a quarterback sack.

The offensive unit scored a pair of touchdowns and two field goals in the 60-minute contest.  Running back Guy DiBalsamo scored the game's first touchdown on a 13-yard run in the second quarter, while tailback Sam Schrader caught a 25-yard scoring aerial from quarterback Matt Shiltz for the game's second TD.

Sophomore Jon Treloar nailed a 27-yard field goal in the contest, while freshman Ian Dobek connected from 33 yards for the second field goal.

Redshirt freshman Malcolm Weaver paced three Butler quarterbacks in the game with 203 passing yards.  He connected on 19 of 26 passes with one interception.  Shiltz added 124 yards through the air, hitting on nine of 15 throws, while freshman Chase Ferguson threw for 78 yards, connecting on 8 of 20 attempts.

Wide receivers Derek O'Connor, who sat out last season, Brian Akialis and Brandon Collins were the top targets in the game.  O'Connor had eight catches for 69, yards, Akialis grabbed seven aerials for a game-high 105 yards and Collins had seven receptions for 67 yards.

The longest rushing play of the afternoon was turned in by wide receiver Brad Prather witha 34-yard run.  DiBalsamo finished with 25 rushing yards on six attempts.