DELAWARE VALLEY UNIVERSITY - NCAA Playoffs

FIRST ROUND: Delaware Valley (W) 35 - Western New England 0

September 26, 2015

Lebanon Valley Football - Missed Opportunities Cost Dutchmen at Widener

Photo courtesy of Lebanon Valley Athletics
Lebanon Valley failed to convert a number of chances in the team's 27-17 loss to defending Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) champion Widener at Leslie C. Quick Jr. Stadium on Friday night, Sept. 25.

The Flying Dutchmen (1-3, 1-2 MAC) mustered just three points in the first half despite starting three of the team's first four drives at their own 44-yard line, 46-yard line, and Widener's 48-yard line.

Marcus Brown's 28-yard field goal got LVC on the board first but the Pride (2-2, 2-1 MAC) responded with a 6-play, 69-yard scoring drive on the team's ensuing possession capped by Robert Getz's 39-yard touchdown scamper.

Widener converted a key 3rd & 15 on the team's second-quarter scoring drive that saw quarterback Seth Klein complete seven passes for 87 yards, including an 11-yard touchdown lob to wideout Connor Schlegel.

The Dutchmen defense held when Pride kicker Ryan O'Hara pushed his field goal attempt wide right just before halftime but the unit allowed the home team to march 74 yards in 11 plays for a touchdown to open the second half, making it 21-3 Widener with 12:09 left in the third quarter.

Lebanon Valley finally got the big play it desperately needed when wide receiver Tim Pirrone took an end around and tossed a 76-yard touchdown pass to fellow wideout Travis Saylor in front of the Dutchmen sideline on the team's next possession, cutting the deficit to 21-10 in the blink of an eye.

LVC held the Pride to field goals on back-to-back possessions but a Widener goal line stand to begin the fourth quarter negated a pair of impressive Brendon Irving runs and put a dent in Lebanon Valley's comeback bid.

Not until strong safety Tim Schumacher forced and recovered a fumble in punt coverage and Tyler Cottlespelled starting quarterback Jeremy Franck late in the fourth quarter did the Dutchmen offense put anything of substance together. Cottle led a 7-play, 41 yard scoring drive finished off by Ryan Fink's 1-yard touchdown run up the gut with 3:29 left to play.

Defensive back Bryan Ek forced and recovered a Getz fumble on Widener's next drive and Cottle again appeared to be moving LVC towards points but he was sacked and stripped of the ball with 55 seconds left, ending any hope of an unlikely Dutchmen comeback.

Offensive Standouts
Travis Saylor, Tim Pirrone, and Brendon Irving – Saylor caught just one pass but it was LVC's offensive highlight of the night; a 76-yard touchdown reception from Pirrone on an end around in the third quarter. In addition to throwing a touchdown pass, Pirrone added a 34-yard scamper on a reverse that led to the Dutchmen's lone field goal. Irving rushed for 115 yards on just 16 carries and racked up a 7.2 yards per carry average.

Defensive Standouts
Tim Schumacher and Bryan Ek – Schumacher made a game-high eight tackles, including seven solo stops. The sophomore strong safety also forced and recovered a fumble on punt coverage that set up LVC's final touchdown. He added a pass breakup that he nearly resulted in a pick-six. Backed up inside team's 5-yard line, Ek made his second interception of the season and returned it 26 yards. The senior corner added five tackles, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery.

Special Teams Standout
Tim Pirrone and Marcus Brown – The athletic sophomore showed why he is such a weapon. In addition to his offensive output, Pirrone returned five kickoffs for 125 yards, including a long of 39 yards. Brown remained perfect on field goals in 2015 when he put his 28-yard attempt through the uprights in the first quarter.

Best of the Rest
- Tailback Brendon Irving extended his streak of games with 100 or more rushing yards to nine dating back to last year.
- Jeremy Franck made his first start at quarterback for the Dutchmen on Friday night.
- Tim PIrrone's only throw of the night resulted in the team's longest scoring play of the season; a 76-yard attempt pulled in by Travis Saylor for a score in the third quarter.
- Trevor St. Clair and Tim Schumacher made a team-best eight stops each for LVC with St. Clair adding a tackle for loss and Schumacher forcing and recovering a fumble. Each player added a pass breakup.
- Linebacker Tommy Garner made a game-high three tackles for loss.
- Defensive linemen Clayton Williard, Andrew Livingston, and John Salcedo were each credited with a sack.
- Widener quarterback Seth Klein threw the ball 65 times, completing 38 attempts for 390 yards, a pair of scores, and an interception.
- The Dutchmen outgained the Pride 250-to-80 on the ground but managed just 104 passing yards compared to 390 by the home team.
- Widener has now won five straight games over Lebanon Valley dating back to the 2011 season.
- Friday's game, originally scheduled for Saturday afternoon, was moved up a day due to logistical concerns surrounding Pope Francis' highly-anticipated visit to Philadelphia this weekend.
- With tonight's loss, the Flying Dutchmen are now 25-16-4 all-time in night games.
- This is the first year in which LVC played two night games in one season since 1960. The Dutchmen opened the 2015 campaign under the lights at Arnold Field against Franklin & Marshall.

Who's Next?
The Dutchmen return to the friendly confines of Arnold Field next Saturday to host MAC foe Lycoming on Saturday afternoon, Oct. 3. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. The matchup with the Warriors is LVC's 2015 Pink Game.
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