Written by Sean Dahlin
BUENA VISTA, Va.—Behind a season-high four touchdowns in the first half, the Southern Virginia University football team earned its second consecutive victory on Saturday's Senior Day defeating Webber International University 27-6.
"We played a complete game today and started early with the momentum in our favor," said fourth-year Head Coach DeLane Fitzgerald. "We couldn't have asked for a better final home game for our seniors."
Southern Virginia's (4-6) offense gained 296 total offensive yards and scored all 27 points before halftime—both season highs—with freshman running back Frank Taitano (Washington, D.C.) moving the Knights to an early 14-0 lead over Webber International (4-6) on a 61-yard touchdown run on the second play of the game followed by an additional 31-yard scamper with 10:20 left in the first quarter for his second score.
Taitano became Southern Virginia's first 100-yard rusher of 2012 accumulating 102 yards on five carries.
In his final home contest with Southern Virginia, senior tight end Jeff Waldron (Costa Mesa, Calif.) added a career-high 102 yards on eight receptions including catching a 20-yard touchdown strike from junior Bruce Eisenhauer (Phoenix, Ariz.) on an end-around pass play with 4:39 left in the second quarter. Waldron also accounted for all five of the offense's converted third downs—the Knights finished 5-for-14 throughout the contest.
"Luke [Herndon] and Dylan [Hall] were our leaders on defense today," said Fitzgerald. "Their penetration through our opponent's offensive line allowed us to control the line of scrimmage."
Senior defensive lineman Dylan Hall (Redding, Calif.) finished with 8 tackles (1 solo, 7 assisted), one sack and a blocked extra-point attempt—his team-leading fifth blocked kick this year—after the Warriors' lone one-yard touchdown run by Brendan DeShiel 13 minutes into the first quarter.
Four-year defensive lineman and co-captain Luke Herndon (Mechanicsville, Va.) recorded 5 tackles (2 solo, 3 assisted), one sack, one quarterback hurry and a pass break-up.
The Knights' final score came on a 45-yard touchdown pass from freshman quarterback Andy Jones (Salt Lake City, Utah)—who completed 10-of-17 passes for 129 yards—to senior wide receiver Cameron Williams (Sacramento, Calif.) with 1:00 left in the half.
Southern Virginia outgained Webber International 331-170 in total offensive yards including a season-high 182 yards on the ground as sophomore running back Jamal Coates (Conover, N.C.) contributed with 75 yards on 16 carries.
Sophomore linebacker Robert Robbins (Glendale, Ariz.) recorded a team-high 11 tackles (5 solo, 6 assisted) in the game and his third fumble recovery this year late in the second quarter to set up Waldron's 20-yard scoring grab.
Football finishes its 2012 campaign by heading south to Jacksonville, Fla., to face the Edward Waters College Tigers on Nov. 10 at 1 p.m. EDT—Southern Virginia's second straight opponent from the NAIA.