Cal U to host 3-2 Clarion
The last two weeks, California University hit the road to take on teams with undefeated records.
On Saturday, the Vulcans return home to play against a team just like them — riding a two-game losing streak.
The Vulcans (3-2, 1-1) entertain PSAC West rival Clarion (3-2, 1-1) for the annual Homecoming game at Adamson Stadium. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m.
After suffering tough losses to Indiana (20-7) and West Chester (38-31), Cal coach Mike Kellar is glad to get back to the home turf for a game to face the Golden Eagles, who are coming off back-to-back 20-point losses to Gannon (45-25) and East Stroudsburg (48-28) after opening the season with three wins.
Clarion will bring in a veteran team — 19 returning starters —but is playing without injured starting quarterback Ben Fiscus.
Darelle Carson has started the last three games for the Golden Eagles and has thrown for 642 yards, hitting 38 of 77 passes. He has three touchdown passes and four interceptions.
Carson has also rushed for 240 yards and scored four TDs.
His top receivers are Mark Nicholas and Mike Detrick, both of whom have caught 15 passes and have a combined five TDs.
Clarion’s leading rusher is Bobby Thomas, who has 361 yards on 71 carries (5.0 avg.) and has scored twice.
In last week’s loss to West Chester, James Harris started at quarterback in place of Cody Schroeder and threw for 273 yards, completing 16 of 31 passes. He threw for two TDs and ran for another.
Harris, a transfer from Wake Forest, will start again Saturday.
The Vulcans’ ground game has yet to take off yet this season as leading rushers Jeff Knox Jr. (76 carries, 221 yards) and Derrick Fiore (58-145) both average under 3.0 yards per carry.
After averaging 18 rushing TDs the last three seasons, Cal has only two rushing scores thus far.
CAL CLIPS: Cal U has won its last eight Homecoming contests … The Vulcans blocked their fourth kick of the season last week when Jalen Fields blocked a 42-yard field goal attempt … Harris’ start at quarterback for the Vulcans last week was his first since he was a junior in high school in 2008 … Cal U and Clarion are in a four-way tie for third place in the PSAC West behind unbeaten IUP and Gannon, both 2-0 in the division.
Jeff Oliver is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2666 or firstname.lastname@example.org.