Marietta And Wilmington Face Off In Battle Of The Beaten

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The Marietta Pioneers and Wilmington Quakers are six games through the 2013 season, and both teams are still searching for their first win. These teams will have a chance to capture elusive win number one this week as the Quakers travel to Marietta to take on the Pioneers at Don Drumm Stadium this Saturday at 1:30 p.m.

In order to pick up this win, the Pioneers need to continue their success in the run game against a tough Wilmington defensive line and find a way to stop the Quakers’ lethal passing attack.

Last week, Marietta lost 45-0 to an Ohio Northern squad that was led by quarterback Patrick Angle and wide receiver Devon Price. The Pios face a similar challenge this week as they take on another deadly quarterback-wide receiver duo. Wilmington receiver Jeremy Duncan is, “The best wide receiver we play against all year,” according to Marietta head coach Andy Waddle. Duncan’s praise from Waddle is much deserved as the sophomore receiver leads the Ohio Athletic Conference with 127.7 yards receiving a game and 18 yards a catch.

However, Duncan could not perform at such a high level without the help of his quarterback Brandon Arehart. Arehart has 1,600 yards passing on the year and 11 touchdowns compared to Marietta quarterback Tom Fulton who only has 725 passing yards and four touchdowns.

While the passing game for the Pioneers remains shaky, the running game has proved to be a reliable option on offense. In last week’s loss to Ohio Northern, running backs Tim Conner and Roger Bush combined for 216 yards rushing. These two players will be put to the test against Wilmington who has a “very physical and athletic defensive line,” according to Waddle. This athletic Quaker defensive line is anchored by seniors Aaron Day and Chris Ferguson who have a combined 72 tackles on the year.

“Wilmington is a heavy pressure team,” Waddle said. “It will be hard to get plays off against this defense.”

The defense for the Quakers could be the key in this game just as it was last year when it held Marietta to only 12 points in a 13-12 victory. In last year’s matchup, Wilmington hit a 35-yard field goal with only 31 seconds left in the game to defeat the Pioneers. With that win, the Quakers ended their 32-game losing streak dating back to 2009.

Marietta hopes to snap its own 17-game losing streak at home this Saturday as both teams are hungry for their first win of the season.