Gazette: Sales Finds Himself In Center Of Action - UMass Athletics

Gazette: Sales Finds Himself In Center Of Action

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
His was the ultimate baptism by fire moment.

Quinton Sales had seen action in the University of Massachusetts football team's first two games this season, but as a reserve behind senior center John Ihne. But when Ihne hurt his shoulder in the second half against Michigan, Sales was forced to step in quickly in front of more than 110,000 people.

The sophomore held his own, enough for the Minuteman offense to put a scare into the Wolverines.

"It was tough. But it was time to go and I've been ready to go since camp," Sales said. "There's been a few bumps in the road but for the most part it's been a good effort and I've fit in pretty well."

Read the full story in the Daily Hampshire Gazette.

UMass backup finds himself in center of action

TOWSON, Md. - His was the ultimate baptism by fire moment.

Quinton Sales had seen action in the University of Massachusetts football team's first two games this season, but as a reserve behind senior center John Ihne. But when Ihne hurt his shoulder in the second half against Michigan, Sales was forced to step in quickly in front of more than 110,000 people.

The sophomore held his own, enough for the Minuteman offense to put a scare into the Wolverines.

"It was tough. But it was time to go and I've been ready to go since camp," Sales said. "There's been a few bumps in the road but for the most part it's been a good effort and I've fit in pretty well."

Ihne missed last week's win at Stony Brook and isn't expected to play Saturday at Towson. Sales, a Fort Washington (Md.) native, will make his second career start in front of family and friends against the Tigers at 7 p.m. Sales said he was more comfortable this week with a start under his belt.

"I feel a lot better. The game experience is the best way to get adjusted," said Sales, who has embraced the leadership responsibilities of the position. "It's tough because I don't have a lot of game experience, but you have to step in and take some leadership and get everybody going. I've been working hard. It feels good."

UMass coach Kevin Morris was pleased with Sales' early play, but expects more going forward.

"He hung in there against Michigan. Against Stony Brook he had a decent game. He made some mistakes as a first-time starter would," Morris said. "His progress has to go up in a hurry and we think he was that ability."

The Minutemen have a bye next week. Barring a setback, Ihne could be ready to return for UMass' Oct. 16 game vs. Richmond.

Time & location: 7 p.m., Johnny Unitas Stadium

Records: UMass is 3-1 (1-0 CAA); Towson is 1-3 (0-1 CAA)

Last week: UMass defeated Stony Brook, 26-21; Towson lost to Columbia, 24-10

All-time series: UMass leads 2-0

TV: None

Radio: WRNX-FM (100.9), WMUA-FM (91.1)

Internet broadcast: Links can be found at umassathletics.com

When UMass has the ball: UMass is among the conference's best rushing teams behind strong efforts from Jonathan Hernandez and John Griffin. The duo could have another big day as the Tigers feature the league's worst run defense. They allow 200 yards per game, which is almost 30 yards worse than anyone else. They've allowed 13 touchdowns on the ground, four more than the next closest team.

UMass quarterback Kyle Havens, who leads the CAA with 248.2 passing yards per game, threw two interceptions early last week. He'll try to avoid repeating that against a team that has only picked off one pass all year.

When Towson has the ball: The Tigers switched to a two quarterback system. Junior Chris Hart, who is also the team's leading rusher, started the season but was inconsistent throwing the ball. His seven TD passes lead the CAA, but so do his six interceptions.

Coach Rob Ambrose wanted to cut down on turnovers, but didn't want to eliminate Hart's running ability, so he's been alternating in Bart Blanchard, a more traditional passer. "I'm not a big proponent of the two quarterback system," Ambrose said. "But each of these guys brings something that the other guy doesn't. As long as we can keep it within the box, we can give defenses a little bit of a headache."

In addition to No. 1 receiver Hakeem Moore (13 catches for 352 yards, five TDs), the Tigers could get back Tom Ryan this week, who has missed the last two games with injury.

Tremayne Dameron is the Tigers' top running back with 187 yards on 54 carries.

Notable: Towson's Jordan Dangerfield was a high school teammate of UMass linebacker Perry McIntyre at Royal Palm Beach in Florida, and a college teammate at Hofstra of UMass' Anthony Nelson and Anthony Dima.

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL: http://cstv.collegesports.com/mt5.2/mt-tb.cgi/10284

Leave a comment




CATEGORIES