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Second Half Football Preview

Second Half Football Preview

WINCHESTER, Va. - Shenandoah University plays its penultimate home game of the 2011 regular season Saturday afternoon with a 4 p.m. game against Maryville.

The Hornets came into the year picked fourth in the USA South and enter tomorrow's contest with a 2-3 overall record and 1-1 in conference play.

After starting off the season with a 49-21 victory over Stevenson, the team went through a rough patch with losses to Bridgewater and Randolph-Macon before gaining some ground with a 30-7 win on homecoming night against Greensboro College. 

Last week, coach Paul Barnes' club staged a furious comeback before falling 27-20 in overtime to Christopher Newport.

With five games remaining in the season and all of them in-conference contests, wins become essential in order to keep post-season hopes alive.

Currently tied with Averett in third place, SU has some work to do in order to win its third-ever USA South Conference title. Still, as Barnes said, "I feel very confident that we can make a run for the conference (title).

"Week in and week out you have to bring your 'A' game to the conference. If you don't bring your 'A' game, you are going to get beat."

Helping this task is a large senior class led by wide receiver Rico Wallace.

Wallace leads the league with 36 receptions for 733 yards and 10 touchdowns on his way to being named USA South Conference Player of the Week on two different occasions.

He was named to the 2012 BSN Collegiate Showcase watch list announced last week by Beyond Sports Network and is currently third in Division III in receiving yards per game.

Defensively, sophomores Josh Rogers and Byron Mitchell have 51 and 50 tackles, respectively.

Tomorrow's contest is the only day game this season and former baseball All-America Greg Van Sickler '11 will be honored at halftime by the USA South Conference.

--story assistance from Chris Felt '12

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