Hudson Valley Accepts Invitation to The Graphic Edge Bowl

CONTACT: Steve Mullen (518) 629-8063 or (518) 629-0115 – home
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Tuesday, November 4, 2003

Vikings to Meet Ellsworth on November 16 in Cedar Falls, Iowa

The Hudson Valley Community College football team will make its second bowl game appearance in school history when it meets Ellsworth Community College in The Graphic Edge Bowl at noon on Sunday, November 16 in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Hudson Valley Community College Director of Athletics Drew Marrochello made the announcement at a press conference held today at the college.

"This is an exciting and historic opportunity for the Hudson Valley football team," said Marrochello. "I want to thank the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference for extending us an invitation, and The Graphic Edge for sponsoring the game."

The Graphic Edge Bowl began in 1978 and is played annually at the UNI-Dome on the campus of the University of Northern Iowa. The bowl consists of two games that match the top two teams from the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference (ICCAC) against two at-large teams.

"We're thrilled to be going to Iowa," Hudson Valley head coach Bob Jojo said. "The opportunity for us to play in The Graphic Edge Bowl is the culmination of a year of hard work by our players and coaches."

It has been 23 years since Hudson Valley's first bowl invitation. In 1980, the Vikings faced Iowa Central Community College in the same bowl game, which was then sponsored by Coca-Cola. Iowa Central won the game, 17-14.

Hudson Valley is 8-1 this season and is the co-champion of the Northeast Football Conference. The Vikings, who are ranked 12th in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) poll, have won six straight games to tie a school record for the number of wins in a season. Hudson Valley finished 8-2 in 1980 and 8-0 in 1996.

The Vikings have won this season by running the ball and stopping the run. Sophomore running back Emmanuel Marc (Spring Valley/Spring Valley High School) leads the NJCAA with 196.6 rushing yards per game this season.

Defensively, Hudson Valley has not allowed a point in the first quarter this year and is only allowing 83.8 yards per game on the ground. Sophomore linebacker John Howell IV (Columbia, SC/Lower Richland High School) tops the defense with 57 tackles. Freshman defensive end Jonal Saint-Dic (Elizabeth, NJ/Elizabeth High School) has a conference-high 12 sacks.

Ellsworth, located in Iowa Falls, Iowa, won the NJCAA national championship in 1976 and 1987. This season, the Panthers finished second in the ICCAC and sport a 5-4 record. All four of their losses have come against nationally-ranked teams. Ellsworth's offense is averaging 306.1 yards per contest.

The NJCAA is sponsoring seven bowl games in 2003. There are 70 NJCAA schools that compete on the gridiron.

Images from Press Conference

November 4, 2003 Press Conference
November 4, 2003 Press Conference
November 4, 2003 Press Conference
November 4, 2003 Press Conference
November 4, 2003 Press Conference
November 4, 2003 Press Conference