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Football: Westminster 2008 Season Review

Monday, December 1, 2008

NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. - The first season of playing home games on artificial turf was a rousing success for the Westminster College football team. The 2008 Titans became the first Westminster team since 1996 to go unbeaten at home as they went 5-0 in five games at the newly-renovated Harold Burry Stadium. Though the Titans lost all five road games to post a 5-5 record - their 52nd non-losing season in the last 58 years - Westminster's season included several memorable victories and milestones.

Two of Westminster's five wins were decided on the final play of regulation, including a goal-line stand in a 24-21 win over Grove City that helped Westminster lock up third place in the Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) with a 3-3 record, the team's highest finish since 2003. Led by fourth-year head coach Jeff Hand, Westminster also defeated Bethany, 46-43, for the greatest comeback in the school history after the Titans faced deficits of 28-0 and 43-29 before winning on a walk-off field goal.

Junior quarterback Kevin Franz (Finleyville, Pa./Thomas Jefferson) set several passing records during the season including career passing yards (6,204), career completions (609) and completions in a season (229). Franz ranked second in the PAC with 231.7 passing yards per game.

In addition, junior wide receiver Jon Gubish (Pittsburgh, Pa./Northgate) set the school record for receptions in a season with 64 (635 yards, 1 TD) as he ranked fourth in the PAC with 6.4 catches per game. Junior tailback Nick McKolosky (Johnstown, Pa./Westmont Hilltop) ranked second in the PAC with 85.1 rushing yards per game (851 total and TDs) while also leading the league with 138.9 all-purpose yards per game.

Three players earned spots on all-PAC team including second-team selections for senior linebacker Jordan Blinn (Industry, Pa./Western Beaver), senior defensive end Andrew Robison (Hermitage, Pa./Wilmington) and junior tight end Gary Hutsler (Coraopolis, Pa./Cornell).

About Westminster College...
Founded in 1852 and related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Westminster College is ranked 15th among liberal arts colleges, according to the Washington Monthly 2007 Annual College Guide. Westminster is a national leader in graduation rate performance, according to U.S. News Guide to America's Best Colleges, and is one of the most affordable national liberal arts colleges in Pennsylvania. Westminster is also honored as one of "The Best 368 Colleges" and "Best in the Northeast" by The Princeton Review, and was recognized by the Templeton Guide as a "Character Building College."

Nearly 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students benefit from individualized attention from dedicated faculty while choosing from 41 majors and nearly 100 organizations on the New Wilmington, Pa., campus.

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Andrew Robison