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The Observer

Case Western Reserve University's independent student news source

The Observer

Case Western Reserve University's independent student news source

The Observer

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Bye week brings week of rest before conference season

With a bye week this weekend, the Spartans will look to rest up and regroup for the remaining season. After the first six games of the season, Case is 3-3 with four more games remaining on their 2012 schedule. For the final four games, the Spartans will have three conference matchups against University of Chicago, Washington University in St. Louis, and Carnegie Mellon University. Currently Carnegie Mellon has the best overall record (5-1) of all four University Athletic Association teams with Case placing third.

Despite the 3-3 record and three consecutive losses, those defeats were all by a close margin. The first loss came against Frostburg State in the home opener as the Bobcats rallied for a one-point victory in the final minute. The second loss was by a field goal as Ohio Wesleyan held off a late rally by the Spartans. The final game of the losing streak came on Homecoming Weekend when Case surrendered two touchdowns early and was unable to recover against Wittenberg for a 14-10 loss.



The Spartan offense has been consistent throughout the six games, averaging 22 points and 365.5 yards per game – 215 yards passing and 150.5 yards on the ground. Case has the second most touchdowns, 17, as well as points scored, 132, in UAA. Quarterback Erik Olson has led the passing game as the Spartans have completed 101 of 169 passes for a 60 percent completion rate. Case has also been hard to contain away from home. With a 2-1 record on the road, the Spartans have averaged 25 points per game compared to 19 points at home. The offense is also averaging 406.3 yards while on the road while the team only averages 324.7 yards at home. This road dominance has been largely carried by the passing game as the Spartans have the most passing yards per completion made in the UAA with 7.6 yards per catch.

The Spartans have relied heavily on their passing game while on the road. Away from Case Field, Case’s passing average, 244 yards per game, is responsible for 60 percent of its yardage, compared to 57 percent at home. While the running combination of running backs Manny Sicre and the injured Kenny Riordan has been a prolific offensive option, the Spartans have been riding quarterback Olson’s arm. Of the three victories, passing has been responsible for 58 percent of the offense and the offense has averaged 246 passing yards.



The defense has had some ups and downs this season, but has kept the Spartans in every game. Case’s defense has held opponents to 16.5 points per game with 296.7 yards – 217.8 passing and 78.8 on the ground. The rushing defense has held its opponents’ rushing game to 26.5 percent of the offense and forces the opposition to rely on the aerial attack. Case has recorded two interceptions on the season. Thanks to the great rushing defense, the Spartans have limited their opponents to only 99 points through six games, second best in the UAA. Two seniors, Cary Dieter and Brandon Flick, have been anchoring the Spartan defense. Dieter leads the team with 19 tackles, while Flick has 17.

Senior nose guard Michael Harris and junior defensive end Brandon Bryant are tied for the most sacks on the team with 3.5 each. Junior safety Jordan Banky and senior outside linebacker Mike Fioramonti each have one interception.


Special Team

Freshman kicker Won Kun Park has progressed and solidified himself as a critical piece of the Spartan special team. Park has made five of his eight field goal attempts, the longest being a 33-yard shot. On the point-after, the South Korea native has an 88 percent completion rate with 15 successful kicks in 17 attempts for 30 points on the season.

Safety Dan Calabrese leads the team in kick returns with 12 and 224 yards in total. The senior has averaged 18.7 yards per return with the longest being a 51 yarder. Calabrese is the only member of the team with punt returns; he currently has nine with 109 total yards on returns.

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