The Western Maryland football team has an opportunity to turn around a disappointing season when it travels to Dickinson on Saturday to face the four-time defending Centennial Conference champion Red Devils.
At this time last year, the Green Terrors were preparing for their biggest game in recent years when Dickinson visited with first place in the conference on the line. The Green Terrors won that game, 17-14, to go 4-0 in conference play, but little has gone right since.
The Green Terrors dropped their final four games of the 1992 campaign -- including three conference games -- to finish 5-5 overall and 4-3 in the conference.
Conference title hopes are not on the line for the Green Terrors (1-3-1) this time after they dropped their first three league games, but there is still nothing better than knocking off the Red Devils (4-1, 2-0).
The Green Terrors settled for a 27-27 tie against a talented Randolph-Macon team last week after surrendering a 13-point lead with a little more than five minutes left in the game.
Senior running back Rob Johnson rushed for 161 yards and a touchdown before leaving the game in the fourth quarter with a severely sprained foot. He is questionable for Saturday's game.
Four key defensive players are due back from injuries this week. Starting right tackle Joe Krcma, who had an elbow infection and missed last week's game, is expected to be ready.
Middle linebacker Trevor Sellers and cornerback Greg Roycraft will not start, but will be available for spot duty.
Sellers, a senior co-captain and leader of the defense, has been out since the season opener with a stress fracture in his shin. Roycraft has missed the past two games with a sprained ankle. Safety Matt Kostovick also will be ready to play.
Dickinson is ranked sixth in the Division III South region. There's no secret to its success offensively. It has four different ground gainers with more than 240 yards rushing.
Senior running back Lou Cristinziani leads the way with 427 yards on 88 carries and eight touchdowns. Chris Hughes has 46 carries for 328 yards and six touchdowns.
The two were co-offensive players of the week in the conference this week after each scored three touchdowns in the Red Devils' 40-0 win over Franklin & Marshall.
All 16 of the Red Devils' offensive touchdowns have come on the ground, and quarterback John Tice has passed only 37 times in five games.
The Dickinson defense has allowed an average of 219 yards of total offense. Defensive end Frank Fosco leads the Red Devils with 42 tackles, and linebacker Jason Fox has added 33 tackles -- seven for losses -- and three interceptions.
The Green Terrors will play host to the 12th annual North/South Classic beginning tomorrow at 4:30 p.m.
The tournament will feature two pools of six teams with Western Maryland competing in pool A with Allentown, Bridgewater, Chowan, Gallaudet and Upsala.
Pool B consists of Carnegie-Mellon, Franklin & Marshall, Mary Washington, Salisbury State and York.
The Green Terrors (12-7 going into last night's match against Gettysburg) will among the favorites along with Upsala and Bridgewater in the first bracket. Centennial Conference foe Franklin & Marshall will be the team to beat in the second bracket.
The top two teams in each pool will advance to the semifinals, set for 3:45 p.m. Saturday, with the finals following at 5 p.m.
Westminster grad Scott Schoberg scored two goals Monday as the Green Terrors ended a six-game skid with a 5-1 win over St. Mary's. The Green Terrors scored three goals in the six losses.