Archive For The “Recap” Category
(Photo Credit: Keith Groller/Morning Call)
It felt a lot closer than 14 to 3 at halftime.
Sure, Lehigh had outgained Georgetown 220-64 on offense up until that point. Definitely, the Lehigh defense, which has been playing with a chip on its shoulder for most of the entire season, was playing, as they say, lights-out, and they had just come up with a big defensive stop in the red zone to keep Georgetown from cutting it from 14-7 rather than 14-3.
But a batted ball at the line of scrimmage, alertly grabbed by DE Hoya DE Hunter Kiselick, made it feel like the Mountain Hawks might rue the opportunities they had in the first hald to put away Georgetown.
After coming in for injured senior QB Nick Shafnisky, sophomore QB Brad Mayes jumped right into the fray and finished the scoring drive with a perfect pass over the middle to junior WR Troy Pelletier to make the score 14-3 Lehigh.
But after a drive that went backwards and that interception, it was Georgetown that had momentum going into halftime, and they were getting the ball back as well.
That’s when the Mountain Hawks, who have defined this season so far as being a second half team, put the game away resoundingly.
“I’m pleased with how the kids responded at halftime,” head coach Andy Coen said after the game. “It wasn’t very pretty on the offensive side on the offensive side of the ball in the first half. The staff did a great job, got the kids rallied around, made a couple different turns of the wheel, so to speak, and really got the thing running again.
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From the first two plays of the game, the Mountain Hawks seemed like they were going to dictate the terms of the rest of their 2015 season.
It started with a slicing kickoff return from freshman KR Mike Gies, who saw some huge holes and got things started with a 39 yard return.
The very next play freshman QB Brad Mayes, again looking more like a senior than an underclassman, found senior WR Derek Knott who lost his defender on a double move, and then turned on the afterburners for a 61 yard touchdown.
It was that sort of half, and that sort of day for the Mountain Hawks, who put the pedal on the gas and didn’t let up until they had secured a very satisfying victory.
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(Photo Credit: Justin LaFleur/Lehigh Athletics)
Last week, Lehigh beat Monmouth 28-25, partially thanks to a crazy blocked punt that landed behind the line of scrimmage and was caught in mid-air by senior FB Zach Hayden, which he advanced for 37 yards and set up the winning score.
After that game, I asked head coach Andy Coen whether Lehigh fans might be able to expect this type of cardiac win every week.
“Probably,” he said. “I think they’ll all be close. Some of them I hope will be close.”
On a warm Saturday evening in late September, Lehigh pulled the exact same rabbit out the hat that the pulled in the first two games of the year, falling behind 22-3 at halftime before rallying to score 26 points in the second half to beat a tough Princeton team.
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(Photo Credit: Facebook/Will Rackley)
Down 14-3 and 21-10, early on it looked like Lehigh’s playoff hopes, already dimmed by the Mountain Hawks’ loss to Colgate, might be done in completely at the hands of their bitter rivals, who were looking for their first win over Lehigh after being unsuccessful in their last four tries.
Then Lehigh put together their best half of football of the year.
Scoring 28 unanswered points, and shutting out the Leopards in the second half, the Mountain Hawks finished the regular season with a resounding 38-21 victory.
Ultimately, it wasn’t enough to get to the postseason, even though it would have been for the first time since the playoffs expanded to 20 teams that a team with 10 Division I wins would not qualify for the FCS playoffs.
But that shouldn’t obscure a fantastic effort by Lehigh’s class of 2013 to stay undefeated against “That School in Easton” and their achievement of being only the 10th team in school history to break the 10 win barrier.
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