October 25, 2014

Widener Football - No. 13 Football Still Perfect With 34-17 Victory at Lycoming

Photo courtesy of Widener Sports Information
No. 13 Widener settled matters in the first half and kept its perfect season alive with a 34-17 Middle Atlantic Conference victory at Lycoming in Williamsport, PA.
Widener on its first drive took advantage of two massive breaks to keep the march alive.  A roughing-the-punter foul deep in Pride territory and a muffed punt recovered by senior Ka'shawn Garnes (Poughkeepsie, NY) at the two yard line gave the visitors an extended drive.
That drive needed only one more play, a two-yard scoring run from senior Terrant Morrison (Smyrna, DE) for a 7-0 lead exactly two minutes into the contest.
Widener's defense held on Lycoming's first possession and refused to let the home team get deep in the red zone.  The Warriors' consolation prize was a 39-yard field goal from Devon Flynn with 8:41 left in the first for a 7-3 contest.
The Pride widened the lead on their next drive thanks to a trick play.  On fourth down and goal at the two, the linemen were spread even with junior kicker Ryan O'Hara (Royersford, PA) in field goal formation.  Sophomore holder Max Kutler (Cranbury, NJ) took the snap and ran into wide-open area with 2:42 left in the first for a 13-3 Widener lead.
Widener on its next drive was not so fortunate as sophomore quarterback Seth Klein (Wernersville, PA) fumbled and it was recovered by Braden Zeiner at the Pride's 10 yard line.  The next play saw Tyler Jenny hook up with Matt Cookson on a touchdown pass with 1:15 to play for a 13-10 deficit.
The Pride did not have to fret long, going on a 13-play, 75-yard drive that spilled into the second quarter.  The march ended when Klein found senior All-America Anthony Davis (Upland, PA) on a two-yard quick slant with 11:42 remaining.  Klein hit senior Nicholas White (Bellmore, NY) on the two-point conversion for a 21-10 margin.
Widener's defense has been solid all year and it was on its toes on fourth down and 1 at the Lycoming three yard line.  A botched handoff from Jenny resulted in senior Brandon Harper (Blackwood, NJ) and junior Stacey Sunnerville (Freehold, NJ) bursting through the line for a big stop midway through the second quarter that all but silenced the partisan Lycoming crowd.
The clouds rolling in symbolized the mood of those on the home side and that suited the Pride just fine.  The ensuing drive resulted in a combination of short plays and ended when Klein found junior Philip Ragona(Oceanside, NY) on a four-yard scoring pass with 1:31 to go for a 28-10 contest.
Widener, which has not trailed all season, had 241 yards of offense in the first half with Klein completing 12-of-18 passes for 165 yards and two scores.  The Pride converted 5-of-9 third-down opportunities, scored on all four of their red-zone appearances and notched a 14-8 edge in first downs.
The third quarter produced the seventh goose egg for Widener's defense in as many contests this season.  The fourth started off bad for the Pride when Jenny found Ryan Umpleby on a 38-yard touchdown pass just 95 seconds into the period for a 28-17 contest.
Widener had nothing to worry about, responding with a 61-yard drive that required just six plays and ending with Klein's 14-yard scoring pass to sophomore Blaine Price (Jefferson, MD).  That gave the Pride a 34-17 lead with 11:37 left.
Klein finished with 347 yards on 25-of-37 attempts.  He now has 404 completions for his career, which moves him to fourth in school history.  Davis notched eight catches for 165 yards, moving into second place in school history with 3,396 receiving yards and sixth in MAC annals with 227 receptions.
Widener had a convincing 514-356 edge in total yards and recorded a 167-75 advantage in rushing yards.
Harper finished with eight tackles with 2 1/2 for a loss and sophomore Sean Titus (Lancaster, PA) added an interception for the Pride.
Jenny completed 25-of-47 passes for 281 yards with Umpleby getting 14 receptions for 203 yards for the Warriors (5-2, 4-2 MAC).  Kyle Sullivan posted 13 tackles.
Widener (7-0, 6-0) remains tied atop the league standing with Delaware Valley and both schools have three games remaining.
Widener is home next Saturday against Stevenson, beginning at 1:00 pm at Leslie C. Quick Jr. Stadium.