Valpo Travels To San Diego For PFL Tilt
Thursday, October 14, 2004
VALPARAISO (3-4, 0-1 PFL) at SAN DIEGO (2-4, 0-1 PFL)

WHEN: Saturday, Oct. 16 - 1:30 p.m. PT (3:30 CT)
WHERE: Torero Stadium, San Diego, California

TV: (tape-delay) - Channel 43 in Valparaiso. Airs on Thursday, Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. - Dick Harlan announcing.

RADIO: 95.1 (WVUR-FM) - Andrew Stem and Andy Viano announcing. Webcast at

THE COACHES: Valparaiso is guided by Tom Horne, who is 65-99-1 in his 16th season at Valpo. San Diego is led by Jim Harbaugh, who is 2-4 in his 1st season at San Diego.

SERIES RECORD: San Diego leads 6-5
LAST MEETING: 2003 - Valpo won 41-34 in Valparaiso.

LAST WEEK: Valpo lost to Dayton 38-7 in Valparaiso. San Diego lost 41-38 to Drake in Des Moines, Iowa.

Valpo will head to the west coast to play San Diego on Saturday beginning at 3:30 p.m. CT (1:30 p.m. PT). The Crusaders (3-4, 0-1 PFL) are attempting to snap a two-game losing streak after falling to Dayton last Saturday. The Toreros (2-4, 0-1 PFL) were edged by Drake 41-38 last weekend.

The series between Valpo and San Diego has been highly competitive with the Toreros holding a 6-5 advantage. Valpo won last season's game 41-34 in Valparaiso.


GIANCOLA NEEDS FIVE POINTS TO BECOME VALPO'S ALL-TIME LEADING SCORER: With one touchdown, Rob Giancola will become Valpo's all-time leading scorer. With 230 career points, Giancola needs 5 to eclipse the 53-year-old record of 234 held by Joe Pahr (1949-51).

CRUSADERS vs. TOREROS - Valpo 41, San Diego 34 Oct. 18, 2003 at Valparaiso

Valpo's hard-fought victory over San Diego improved the Crusaders' record to 2-0 in PFL games and served as a bridge to clinching the 2003 North Division title. The theme of David Macchi to Rob Giancola was accentuated in this contest as the combination connected on four touchdown passes. Macchi, who tossed a school-record five touchdown aerials in the game, completed 23 of 39 passes for 430 yards.

San Diego, behind the first two of three Evan Harney touchdown runs, jumped out to a 14-3 first-quarter lead. Valpo grabbed a 17-14 lead on a 52-yard scoring pass from Macchi to Kevin Knutson and a 47-yard touchdown pass to Giancola. Following another Torero touchdown, Valpo's Andrew McCawley booted a 37-yard field goal with no time on the clock as San Diego held a 21-20 halftime advantage.

The third quarter produced a 27-27 tie as big plays by Harney (78-yard TD run) and Giancola (58-yard TD reception) set up the decisive fourth quarter.

The Macchi-Giancola tandem struck two more times - on 20 and 55-yard touchdown passes - in the final period to give Valpo a 41-27 lead with 7:32 remaining. After Harney's third touchdown (5-yard run) trimmed the lead to 41-34, Valpo's defense stopped San Diego's high-powered offense on downs at the Valpo 46-yard line with 1:02 left and the Crusaders ran the remaining time off the clock.

INSIDE VU FOOTBALL, head coach Tom Horne's TV show, airs every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 43 in Valparaiso. This week's guest is junior free safety Brad Smeja.

LAST WEEK'S STANDOUTS AGAINST DAYTON: Rob Giancola caught a 16-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Doerffler to move within five points of becoming the school's all-time scoring leader (234 points, Joe Pahr, 1949-51). On the day, Giancola made four receptions for 93 yards.....Brad Smeja led the team with 11 tackles, including 10 solo......sophomore Travis Davis made four tackles, including two for losses, and had one fumble recovery.....freshman Stephen Lyons made seven solo tackles.....Elliott Powell made his second interception of the season.....Brandon Sturman made a sack (9-yard loss).....Kyle Kater made two tackles for loss.

VALPO INDIVIDUALS AMONG PFL LEADERS: Brandon Sturman is tied for the PFL lead with 3 sacks and ranks 2nd in tackles for loss (6.0).....Rob Giancola ranks 3rd in receiving yards (74.3 ypg.). Kevin Knutson stands 5th in the league in receiving yards (66.7 ypg.) and receptions (4.5 pg.). Jeff Horton is 7th in rushing (59.6 ypg.). Quarterback Joe Milazzo stands 3rd in passing efficiency and 8th in the PFL in total offense (139.7 ypg.). James Riker ranks 6th in sacks (2.0) and tackles for loss (5.0)....... Joe Blahowicz is 3rd in punting (36.8 ypp.).

Valpo travels to play at Drake on Sat., Oct. 23 beginning at 1 p.m. CT.