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Injuries plague University of Toledo QBs


The Rockets' Barry Church rocks Delano Green Saturday night. In the first quarter, UT's senior safety blocked an extra-point attempt — his third block in two games. <br> <img src=> <font color=red><b>VIEW</font color=red></b>: <a href="/apps/pbcs.dll/gallery?Site=TO&Date=20091025&Category=SPORTS11&ArtNo=102509996&Ref=PH" target="_blank "><b> Toledo - Temple (October 24, 2009) </b></a> photo gallery

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The Aaron Opelt watch goes on another week.

The University of Toledo senior quarterback missed his second consecutive game last night after suffering a right shoulder injury Oct. 10 against Western Michigan.

Junior third-stringer Alex Pettee made his first career start in place of Opelt, with freshman backup quarterback Austin Dantin also sidelined.

Opelt has not played since he was driven to the turf on a 7-yard run in the second quarter against the Broncos two weeks ago.

Dantin went down last week against Northern Illinois with a high right ankle sprain.

Pettee entered in relief of him and finished 2-of-2 passing for 28 yards. He also guided what proved to be the game-winning scoring drive late in the fourth quarter against the Huskies.

The Rockets' first two possessions with Pettee behind center last night against Temple ended in three-and-outs.

Pettee's first pass was deflected by Temple defensive tackle Muhammad Wilkinson and almost intercepted. His next attempt on third-and-8 was thrown behind UT receiver Stephen Williams on a crossing route and fell incomplete.

On the Rockets' next possession, Temple linebacker Alex Joseph dropped an interception on second down and Pettee was sacked by defensive end Adrian Robinson for a loss of seven on third down.

Pettee finally completed his first pass with 3:37 left in the first quarter. His 11-yard connection with freshman receiver Eric Page also marked UT's first first down of the game.

In the first half, Pettee was 13-of-24 passing for 111 yards. He also fumbled away the ball once, which resulted in Temple kicker Brandon McManus' 30-yard field goal that made it 23-7 with 9:58 to go in the half.

Redshirt freshman quarterback David Pasquale also saw some time behind center in the first quarter - becoming the fourth UT signal-caller to play in the last three games.

Playing exclusively in the Wildcat formation, Pasquale did not attempt a pass and rushed for one yard on two carries. He also fumbled once, which was recovered by UT running back Adonis Thomas.

TOUGH GUY: Although he was listed as doubtful entering last night's contest because of an injury, Temple freshman Bernard Pierce started at running back and didn't appear hampered at all early on. He rushed for 32 yards on his first four carries.

Pierce totaled 57 rushing yards on 11 carries in the first quarter, including a

1-yard run with 6:49 left in the quarter that gave the Owls a 13-0 lead.

Pierce kept it going in the second quarter, scampering for a 39-yard TD with 12:58 to go before halftime that put Temple up 20-7.

In the first half, Pierce carried 17 times for 115 yards - this after getting carted off with a neck/shoulder injury last week against Army.

Entering last night's contest, Pierce was second in the Mid-American Conference with 92.3 rushing yards per game. He was also third nationally in rushing by a freshman.

UT CAPTAINS: Page, senior defensive tackle Derrick Summers, senior right tackle John Morookian and senior safety Barry Church served as last night's team captains for UT.

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