On Saturday, Oct. 18, the Shepherd Rams were stunned by Notre Dame College, suffering their first loss of the season and their first regular season loss in two years. Now, the Rams are looking to put the loss behind them, as they prepare for their match against Glenville State for Homecoming weekend.
The Glenville State Pioneers hold a 4-4 record on the season. Despite having a .500 winning percentage, the Pioneers have won four of their last five games, including wins against Charleston, who started 4-0, and Notre Dame, who pulled off the upset against Shepherd.
Last year when these two teams faced off, Shepherd came away with the victory at Glenville 45-19.
Glenville State is second in the Mountain East Conference in rushing offense, recording 1642 yards and averaging 205.2 rushing yards per game according to the Mountain East Conference’s statistics. The ground game is led by running back Rahmann Lee, who leads the conference with 1048 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns. He is also a threat in the passing game, recording 32 receptions, 447 receiving yards and two touchdowns.
Shepherd will look to contain Lee, as they have the best rushing defense in the conference by far. In seven games, the Rams’ defense has allowed 282 rushing yards, 40.3 yards per game and only one touchdown for the entire season. To put that in perspective, the second best rushing defense in the conference is Concord, who has allowed 969 rushing yards in eight games and is allowing 121.1 rushing yards per game while giving up 10 touchdowns.
Glenville State quarterback Sean Steele has been one of the more efficient quarterbacks in the Mountain East Conference this year. So far, he has thrown for over 2000 passing yards with 18 touchdowns and four interceptions. Shepherd is first in the conference in pass defense, allowing 152 yards per game and seven touchdowns through the air.
Look for Shepherd quarterback Jeff Ziemba to have a big game. Glenville State ranks last in the conference in pass defense, allowing 294.1 yards per game and 21 touchdowns through the air. Ziemba has been having a fantastic year, throwing for over 1500 yards, 11 touchdowns, zero interceptions and a 69.4 percent completion percentage, which is the best in the conference.
Home-field advantage looks to be a big factor for Shepherd as well. The Rams have played three home games thus far and have outscored their opponents by a whopping score of 163-7.
The Rams also have an extra week to prepare for the game, as they had a bye week last week.
The match against Glenville State will take place on Saturday, Nov. 1 at noon.