VIDEO: Wesley's Gerlitz more than just a punter
Wesley's Ryan Gerlitz showed at Middletown High School he could be a multi-faceted threat for a football team, and he's continued that at Wesley College.
The 2007 Delaware Offensive Player of the Year was a star receiver on a State Championship team, but also proved strong enough with his feet to be named the state's 3rd Team kicker that season.
The senior transferred to Dover after playing at Division II power Carson-Newman, and during the past two seasons at Wesley, he's had a chance to show both part of his game. The 6-foot-3 target grabbed 8 receptions last season, but 3 of them went for touchdowns.
While doing that, he also served as Wesley's kickoff man, recording two touchbacks.
This season his role has changed again, after collecting one reception early in the season, he has been shifting to focus on a task he didn't have to do much before, punting.
He's proved a steady foot, putting 8 punts inside the 20 while also forcing 10 fair catches. Gerlitz is also credited with a 61-yard punt this year.
His hands have still proved important, as a mid-season switch in holders put him in the important position of placing the football for Jon Storck, and has been part of an operation that started 1-for-5 but has now made 9-of-10 field goals.
Ryan has also had the chance to play the role of proud pseudo-coach, as his younger sister Claire took over as Middletown's place-kicker this season. He watched from the stands as his younger sibling kicked a sure-footed extra point during the Cavaliers' loss in Saturday's DIAA Championship Game.
Wesley hopes Gerlitz is more busy as a holder than a punter Saturday, but Gerlitz says the key to punting on a projected cold day is finding the "sweet spot" on the football, and blocking out the temperatures.
You can hear No. 15 Wesley battle No. 1 Mount Union Saturday at Noon on 1150AM WDEL, WDEL.com, and the WDEL Smartphone App.
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