Muhlenberg College

Allentown, Pa.
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Friday, October 5, 2001
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Joseph Muccia Who says offensive linemen never get to touch the ball? In a game against Dickinson earlier this season, Muhlenberg senior Joseph Muccia touched the ball on approximately 60 offensive plays.

Muccia, of course, was playing center and snapped the ball to start each play. The Mules’ starting guard for the last two seasons, he moved over a space on the line to fill in for an injured teammate.

“I enjoy guard more, but at center you control more,” said Muccia in comparing the two positions. “Nothing can happen until you snap the ball. You have to set how the plays are called so I guess you have more responsibility to handle. It’s good both ways, but if I had to pick one I’d say I’d play guard. I have a lot more fun playing guard.”

When he’s playing guard, Muccia gets more of a chance to use his biggest asset. At 238 pounds, he is easily the smallest of the Mules’ regular offensive linemen, but he also is the quickest.

“My favorite thing to do is to get downfield and make the blocks to spring a long run,” he said. “Playing center you can’t get downfield that much.”

Whichever position he’s playing, Muccia is part of an excellent line that is the backbone of an offense that’s averaging 35.8 points per game so far this season and tied a school record with 4,278 total yards last year.

“It’s an unglorified position, but we see the glory with all the points on the board and all the yardage,” noted Muccia. “It feels great when you see the running backs and receivers setting records, making all-conference, getting player of the week. You feel good because you know if it wasn’t for your blocks it wouldn’t be happening. You’re not going to finish 9-2 and pile up all those yards if you don’t block together as a unit.”

As an undersized offensive lineman, Muccia has another asset he can use to help the team – his head. Muccia says his proficiency in math enables him to see whether or not Muhlenberg will have trouble blocking a play as soon as he gets up to the line of scrimmage.

A double major in accounting and business administration, Muccia interned with a clearing corporation over the summer and hopes to begin his postgraduate career in a public accounting firm. Thanks in large part to his efforts, the Mules have been in the black for most of the last four years.


The Muhlenberg volleyball team continued its hot ways, winning its pool on the first day of the 32nd Annual Oneonta State Invitational.

The Mules (13-5), who have won five in a row, came back from a 1-0 deficit to defeat Alfred in four games, the swept Mount St. Mary (N.Y.) in three. Muhlenberg goes into Saturday’s championship round along with the other pool winners, King’s, Skidmore and Oneonta State. The Mules will face Skidmore at 9:30. The second semifinal is slated for 11:30, with the consolation match at 1:30 and the championship match at 3:30.

Against Alfred, junior Jennifer Leigh sparked the Muhlenberg attack with a career-high nine kills. Junior Dana Ferrelli had a team-high 14 kills to go along with 17 digs, while senior Laura Funsten had 20 digs and 31 assists.

Junior Lisa Giammalvo recorded a career-high 20 kills, just two short of the school record, in the Mount St. Mary match. Sophomore Maria Poluka paced the defense with 19 digs, while freshman Jessica Walsh saw her most extensive playing time to date and contributed 13 digs.

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Last updated October 5, 2001