Vil­lanova’s Akins fin­ish­ing on high note

North Penn Life - - Sports - By Tom Layberger For Mont­gomery Me­dia

RQQLH ANLQV KDV HxSHri­enced the peaks and val­leys of col­lege foot­ball dur­ing his four sea­sons at Vil­lanova. Mere months af­ter ar­riv­ing on the Main Line cam­pus in the sum­mer of 2009 he and the Wild­cats basked in the glory of win­ning the Foot­ball Cham­pi­onship Sub­di­vi­sion (FCS) ti­tle with a win over Mon­tana. Last sea­son, the North Penn prod­uct served as a shoul­der to lean on while help­ing guide younger play­ers through the strug­gles of a 2-9 cam­paign.

For sheer drama, how­ever, it would be tough to top what took place Satur­day in Delaware and through­out the Colo­nial Ath­letic As­so­ci­a­tion as Vil­lanova looked to se­cure a play­off bid. First and fore­most the Wild­cats (8-3, 6-2 CAA) needed to take care of their end of the bargain by de­feat­ing the Blue eens. Led in part by Akins’ two IRuUWK-TuDUWHU LQWHUFHSWLRQV — WKH fiUVW LQ the end zone with Delaware look­ing to trim Vr’s lead to 20-1T and the sec­ond re­sult­ing in a 45-yard touch­down re­turn for a 34-10 ad­van­tage — Vil­lanova rolled past rD, 41-10, to win a share of the con­fer­ence ti­tle.

While they got the win, a host of other sce­nar­ios out­side the Wild­cats’ con­trol had to fall into per­fect align­ment in or­der for WKHP WR PDNH WKH 20-WHDP SODyRII fiHOd. When lld Do­min­ion topped James Madi­son about four hours af­ter Vr’s vic­tory, the check­list was com­plete. The ‘Cats were not only play­off bound, but they also locked up the con­fer­ence’s au­to­matic bid. They travel to Long Is­land on Satur­day (3 p.m.) to face Stony Brook of the Big South Con­fer­ence. eence, Akins has at least one more game re­main­ing in his ca­reer.

“It’s a great feel­ing to come from how low we were last year to rise to the top of the league this year,” said Akins. “We knew we had to (win at Delaware) and hope for the best.”

lne of three team cap­tains this sea­son, Akins heads into the play­offs sec­ond on the squad in tack­les with 6T. The safety also KDV VLx WDFNOHV IRU ORVV DQd KLV SDLU RI SLFNV at rD gives him three for the sea­son. While

North Penn grad­u­ate Ron­nie Akins hopes to ex­tend his ca­reer as Vil­lanova en­ters the FCS play­offs.

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