Saturday, May 23, 2015

Talley uneasy with his Wildcats

Talley uneasy with his Wildcats

Villanova´s Lawrence Doss is brought down by Penn´s Taylor Brown, left, and<br />Evan Jackson in first quarter of Saturday´s game at Franklin Field. ( Ron Cortes / Staff<br />Photographer )<br />Quakers at Franklin Field on Saturday, September 24, 2011.
Villanova's Lawrence Doss is brought down by Penn's Taylor Brown, left, and Evan Jackson in first quarter of Saturday's game at Franklin Field. ( Ron Cortes / Staff Photographer ) Quakers at Franklin Field on Saturday, September 24, 2011.

Though his team came out with a victory over Penn Satruday night at Franklin Field, Villanova coach Andy Talley said on Monday that the Wildcats still have a long way to go.

'Nova defeated Penn, 30-21, in a game that was closer than the final score would indicate. It gave the Wildcats their first win of the season after three losses.

``We are not a very good football team," Talley said. 

'Nova's lead over the Penn going into the fourth period was 23-14, but when Quakars quarterback Billy Ragone connected with wide receiver Ryan Calvert for a 10-yard touchdown, the Wildcats lead was slashed to two points with 10 minutes, second left to play.

With the score the same, Penn took over possession at its own 4-yard line with 2:21 remaining. The Quakers reached the 17 before 'Nova defensive back Ronnie Atkins intercepted a Ragone pass and took to the end zone from 26 yards with 12 seconds showing on the clock.

``The interception was really critical at the end of the game," Talley said. ``We were fortunate."I sure didn't want to see Penn get in field goal range and put one in at the end."

The victory was 'Nova' second in a row against Penn where an interception return for a score played heavily into the outcome. And for the second straight year, Wildcats defensive back James Pitts burned the Quakers for one.

His 56-yarder last season with 2:29 left clinched a 22-10 victory for 'Nova. On Saturday, Pitts went 26 yards for a touchdown that increased the Wildcats lead from 16-14 to 23-14.

``That was two guys swinging to end, and we were fortunate to come up with a play at the end," Talley said. ``I sure wish Ronnie had just taken a knee so we could end the game.

 With its nonleague games now out of the way, 'Nova will go into its Colonial Athletic Assocciation schedule full-time. In their only CAA outing to date, the Wildcats went down 31-10 at Towson on Sept. 10.

Next up is a game against visiting William & Mary on Saturday.

``Now with league games for the rest of the season, I shudder to think about having to play William & Mary, New Hampshire and James Madison back-to-back-to-back," Talley said.


About this blog
Joe Juliano first visited the Palestra in 1970 after entering Temple University and became hooked for life on Big Five basketball. He'll always go with that name, figuring if the Big Ten can have 12 teams, why can't the Big Five have six?

Juliano joined the Inquirer in 1985 after 10 years at United Press International and has covered college sports for most of that time. His current beats are Villanova basketball, Penn State football, golf and the Penn Relays. Reach Joe at

Joe Juliano Inquirer Staff Writer
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