Warriors win Homecoming showdown with Albright

WR Ryan Wagaman scores a touchdown on a 34 yard strike from QB Colin Dwyer

WR Ryan Wagaman scores a touchdown on a 34 yard strike from QB Colin Dwyer

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. – The Lycoming College football team improved to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the Middle Atlantic Conference with a 23-13 win against Albright on Saturday, Oct. 11, in front of a Homecoming crowd of over 3,000 fans.

Albright became the first team this season to compile more than 300 yards of offense against the Warrior defense, finishing the game with 348 yards to Lycoming’s 350. The Lions held a dominant advantage in time of possession and total plays, running 82 plays in 35:16 to the Warriors 57 plays in 24:44, but were plagued by two turnovers and nine penalties in the game.

Albright opened the game with a drive that lasted over six minutes but totaled just 28 yards before turning the ball over on downs.

The Warriors took over near midfield and nearly struck on the first play from scrimmage when Colin Dwyer (Dalton, Pa.) threw a deep pass that Brad Shellenberger (Lock Haven, Pa.) just missed off the tip of his fingers.

Dwyer’s second pass was intercepted by Ryan Dolan to give the ball back to the Lions.

Albright’s second drive lasted 3:25 but equaled out to minus-one yard after two false start penalties forced a punt.

Lycoming took over on its own three-yard line and moved the ball up the field to the 49-yard line before the drive stalled out and Jake Lamphere (Monroeton, Pa.) punted the ball away to end the quarter notched at 0-0.

Both teams endured three-and-outs to start the third quarter. On Albright’s second possession of the quarter, the team was called for an illegal procedure and failed to gain a yard, totaling minus-five yards on the drive and being forced to punt the ball back to the Warriors.

Lycoming would strike for the first time in the game on a three-play, 37-yard drive that took just 34 seconds. Dwyer hit Brad Shellenberger for a gain of 27 yards to set up an eight-yard Josh Kleinfelter (Bellwood, Pa.) touchdown run with 8:59 to play in the half. Scott Erikson’s (New Providence, N.J.) extra point put the Warriors up 7-0.

Again the Lions used up nearly five minutes of game clock, putting together a nine-play, 36-yard drive that was stalled by the Lycoming defense at the Warrior 34-yard line, forcing another punt.

After an Albright timeout, Lycoming began a seven-play, 79-yard scoring drive on its own 21-yard line. The drive, totaling 3:00, was highlighted by passes of 17 yards to Shellenberger and 21 yards to Kleinfelter before Dwyer connected on a 34-yard strike to Ryan Wagaman (Aspers, Pa.). Erikson’s PAT was no good, putting Lycoming up 13-0 with 1:05 left in the half.

Two false starts and a costly 15-yard offensive pass interference call cost Albright a scoring opportunity on its final drive of the half.

On the opening drive of the second half, Dwyer was intercepted at the Albright seven-yard line by Lion captain Matt Christ.

The Warrior defense flexed its muscle on the next play, sacking Tanner Kelly and forcing a fumble in the end zone. Ted Geurds (Douglassville, Pa.) and Matt Licci (Drexel Hill, Pa.) were credited with the sack that forced the fumble. Lycoming senior captain Chris Tribanas (Lansdale, Pa.) recovered the fumble in the end zone for a Warrior touchdown. Erikson’s kick attempt was good to put Lycoming on top 20-0 with 13:10 to play in the third quarter.

Albright bounced back with a 10-play, 60-yard scoring drive that was capped by a seven-yard touchdown pass from Kelly to William Alston. The PAT brought the score to 20-7 with 7:58 left in the third.

The Warriors would answer back on their next possession, marching 52 yards in 11 plays to the Albright 15-yard line, where Erikson kicked a 32-yard field goal to put Lycoming up 23-7 with 3:24 left in the quarter.

After punts from each team closed the third quarter and opened the fourth, Lycoming senior captain Nick Reese (Shenandoah, Pa.) intercepted a Kelly pass near midfield and returned it 24 yards to the Albright 37-yard line.

After each offense was stalled, Lycoming got the ball back with 4:49 to play in the game and marched 72 yards down the field to the one-yard line before Albright forced a fumble and recovered it in the end zone for a touchback with 1:05 to play.

The Lions mounted one final scoring drive, covering 80 yards and scoring on the final play when Kelly connected with AJ Hill on a 15-yard touchdown pass to end the game at 23-13 in favor of the Warriors.

Albright held a 23-18 advantage in first downs and put up 274 passing yards to Lycoming’s 126. The Lions managed 74 rushing yards.

Kleinfelter led the Warrior rushing attack with 19 carries for 132 yards and one touchdown, finishing the game with a 6.9 yard per carry average. Mark Rosa (Honesdale, Pa.) carried the ball 11 times for 44 yards with Ryan Godec (Malvern, Pa.) toting the ball twice for 29 yards.

Dwyer completed a season-low 9-of-19 passes for 126 yards and one touchdown while being intercepted twice. He also carried the ball six times for 19 yards.

Shellenberger caught three passes for 52 yards with Wagaman and Nate Robley (Williamsburg, Pa.) each pulling down two catches. Wagaman finished with 40 yards and a score while Robley added 11.

Reese led the defensive effort, finishing with 12 total tackles and one interception. Chuck Bellitto (New Holland, Pa.) and Ben Rosa (Honesdale, Pa.) were second on the team in tackles, finishing with 11 each. Bellitto also had .5 sacks in the game.

All four of the Lycoming starting defensive lineman recorded sacks in the game, led by Kyle Murren (Hughesville, Pa.), who had 1.5. Tribanas had 1.0 with Geurds and Licci each recording .5 and a forced fumble.

With the win, the Warriors remain in a two-way tie for first-place in the MAC, boasting a 4-1 overall record and a 2-0 conference mark. No. 13 Delaware Valley shares that same record after a win over Lebanon Valley on Saturday, Oct. 11. Albright drops to 3-2 overall and 1-1 in the MAC.

Lycoming is will travel to Wilkes-Barre, Pa. next Saturday, Oct. 18, for a 1 p.m. MAC showdown with Wilkes.

Notes: Saturday was the first time all season that a team managed over 300 yards of total offense against Lycoming … the Warriors entered the game with the sixth-ranked total defense in the nation … nine completions and 19 pass attempts were both season lows for the Warriors, as was 126 passing yards … Saturday was the first time this year that Lycoming has failed to convert on 50 percent of its third-down conversions, going 3-of-10 in the game … Kleinfelter went over 100 yards for the third time this season … Wagaman’s catch was his first TD of the season … Lycoming’s win improved the Warriors to 31-16-2 in the all-time series with Albright, which dates back to 1957 … Albright won each of the last two meetings (40-7 in 2007 and 42-35 in 2006) … the Lycoming offense has tallied over 300 yards in every game this season … Lycoming has outgained its opponent in every game this season … the team currently has one win more than the total of three from 2007 … the win is the fourth in a row for the Warriors and is the sixth in a row at Person Field … attendance was listed at 3,219 on Saturday.

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