Warriors roar with 28-point first quarter, rout Lions, 50-0
READING, Pa. – Senior Josh Kleinfelter (Bellwood, Pa./Bellwood-Antis) became the Lycoming College football team's all-time leading rusher as he posted 147 yards on 27 carries and the defense pitched its first shutout since 2005 as the Warriors dominated Albright, who entered the game with the Middle Atlantic Conference's top offensive attack, 50-0, in league play on Saturday at Gene L. Shirk Stadium.
The shutout was Lycoming's first since a 25-0 defeat of Juniata in the 2005 season-opener and the team rolled up 50 points on 386 total yards of offense, marking the first 50-point game since a 55-24 win over Juniata in the season finale in 2002.
Kleinfelter finished off his run for the school's career rushing record in the first drive of the second half, as he rushed for six yards to the 44 yard line to tie Brian Thompson's record of 3,267 yards set from 1995-98 before an 11-yard rush sealed the mark later in the drive. For good measure, he capped the drive with a touchdown on a six-yard run, becoming the fourth back in school history to rush for 25 touchdowns, giving Lycoming (4-1 overall, 2-0 MAC) a 35-0 lead.
Kleinfelter finished the game with two touchdowns and the 147 yards, giving him 3,309 in his career.
After Kleinfelter's capstone drive, the Warriors turned to another senior leader in Ryan Wagaman (Aspers, Pa./Biglerville), as the senior hauled in passes from sophomore Zach Klinger (Halifax, Pa./Halifax) of 37 yards and 18 yards, both on third-and-long situations with the second going toward the left pylon of the end zone for the TD. A missed extra point kept the score 41-0.
The Warriors added two more points thanks to a safety though, as a punt by freshman Zach Czap (Phillipsburg, Pa./Phillipsburg-Oscelola) was downed at the one-yard line and on the next play, sophomore Roger Jayne (Harvey's Lake, Pa./Lake Lehman) broke through the line to tackle Ty Hughes for the safety.
An interception by junior Ray Bierbach (Hunlock Creek, Pa./Northwest) at the 50-yard line helped set up another score by the Warriors, as senior Tim Hook (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin) found classmate Michael Reese (Shenandoah, Pa./Shenandoah) in the endzone with 5:42 left in the game. Another Albright drive stalled at the Warriors' 13-yard line after 10 plays and Lycoming knelt on the ball to close out the win.
Lycoming got off to a hot start, thanks to its star running back, as Kleinfelter chewed up 59 yards on six carries, including a 31-yarder. A pair of Albright penalties helped sustain the drive before sophomore Zach Klinger (Halifax, Pa./Halifax) punched it in with a one-yard run to take the early lead.
The Warriors kept the peddle to the floor, as senior Chuck Bellitto (New Holland, Pa./Garden Spot) flew in weak-side on a third down play to sack Lions' quarterback Adam Galczynski, forcing a fumble that was picked up by sophomore Dillon Rudloff (Athens, Pa./Athens) at the Albright 25-yard line. Three plays and 25 yards more later, Kleinfelter crossed the goal line on a 15-yard run to put the Warriors up 14.
After an eight-play drive for Albright was stalled, Klinger struck by going up over-the-middle, hitting sophomore running back Parker Showers (Aspers, Pa./Biglerville) behind the defense and from there Showers died the rest on the 65-yard touchdown reception to help the Warriors take the three-touchdown lead.
Even when things appeared to start to turn the Lions' way, as a pass was complete near midfield, it turned in the Warriors' favor as Bierbach just took the ball out of the Lions' receivers hands and returned it to the eight-yard line, where Showers ran it in on the first play of the drive.
The second quarter turned a new page for Albright, as the Warriors picked up a fumble recovery at the 15-yard line, but a penalty-plagued drive ended with a missed field goal, the first of the season for senior T.J. Chairolanza (Warminster, Pa./William Tenant). The Lions (2-3 overall, 0-2 MAC) matriculated the ball to the Lycoming 30-yard line, but the Warrior defense again stood tall, forcing a punt. From there, both teams struggled to move the ball, with each team stalling on two drives before halftime.
Klinger finished 6-for-11 for 147 yards and two touchdowns passing and he added 22 yards on three carries and a touchdown on the ground. Showers posted a career-high 42 yards on 14 carries to go with a touchdown and also posted two catches for 70 yards and a TD. Wagaman caught three passes for 65 yards and a touchdown.
Sophomore Jamie Reitzi (Middletown, Pa./Middletown) led the Warriors with seven tackles and Bellitto added five tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and a pass breakup. Sophomore Nate Oropollo (Aldan, Pa./Cardinal O'Hara) added five tackles, including one for a loss and Jayne added the safety, one of his 1.5 tackles for a loss. Both Bierbach and Fenningham posted interceptions and junior Anthony Marascio (Philadelphia, Pa./Father Judge), Bierbach and Rudloff added fumble recoveries, as the Warriors held the Lions, who averaged more than 400 yards of offense per game, to just 153 total yards.
The Lions were led by Galczynski, who finished 7-for-11 passing for 17 yards and Clif LeGrand, who ran nine times for 53 yards. Eddie Mitchem posted 10 tackles, Rob Mancinelli added eight and Rion Robinson posted seven.
The Warriors return home for Homecoming next week, as Widener comes to David Person Field for a 1:30 p.m. contest.