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Friday, August 30, 2002

MEN'S SOCCER: Lehigh and Lafayette have shot at playoffs
The Morning Call/ By Brett Tomlinson
In the Patriot League, Lehigh and Lafayette should contend for two of the league's four postseason bids. Lehigh senior forward Evan Bruno heads a group of returning players who scored 90 percent of the team's goals last year. Lafayette's stingy defense, which allowed 0.65 goals per game last year, remains intact with Jay Freedman in goal behind backs Tom Wajda and Victor Krasij.

Sunday, August 25, 2002

FOOTBALL: Lafayette ready to ride McCourt's legs to victories
The Morning Call/ By Ted Meixell
By his own admission, Lafayette tailback Joe McCourt relied on his instincts, not a thorough knowledge of offensive coordinator Mike Faragalli's offense, to get through the early stages of his freshman season. ''The first half of the season, I didn't even know the plays,'' McCourt, now a 6-1, 205-pound sophomore, said as he eagerly awaited the start of preseason camp for the 2002 season. ''I just took the ball and ran, like I did in high school.'', it takes more patience, you've got to let the plays develop. You can't just run right to the hole, you've got to wait for the hole to open. The second half of the season, I picked up a little better, and in spring workouts I got it down OK. I can't wait.'' For a guy just playing it by ear, McCourt's performance wasn't too shabby, even though the Leopards' record (2-8) wasn't so hot. Despite not becoming the full-time tailback until halfway through 2001, he ran for 731 yards and amassed 1,326 all-purpose yards (counting pass receptions and punt and kickoff returns). And he was named the Patriot League's Rookie of the Year.

Wednesday, August 21, 2002

FOOTBALL: Ex-Lafayette coaches tutor Russians football
The Express-Times/ By John Bruns
It's only August and former Lafayette College football coach Harry Gamble and members of his Leopards' staff from the 1960s have a championship under their belts already. Gamble and four members of his first Lafayette staff in 1967 -- Bill Haushalter, George Azar, Joe Murphy and Bill Manlove -- helped coach a team of Russian all-stars to the title in the European Junior Championship of American Football earlier this month at Glasgow, Scotland. The tournament is sponsored by the National Football League. The other two members of that 1967 Lafayette staff were the late Otto Kneidinger and Dick Anderson, who remains active in the college ranks on Joe Paterno's Penn State staff. The Russian team, whose native coach was Vassil Dobriakov, defeated Germany 26-20 by scoring two touchdowns in the final quarter to overcome a 20-12 deficit. The game was played before a crowd of about 5,000, including many Russians, in Broadwood Stadium, Glasgow. The winning touchdown came on a pass from the old Lafayette play book.

Tuesday, August 20, 2002

FOOTBALL: Stocker's back at Lafayette
The Morning Call/ By Ted Meixell
Several good arguments caused Wilson High graduate Bill Stocker to consider not returning to play football again for Lafayette College. Stocker suffered a scary back injury on Oct. 7, 2000, at Columbia. One herniated disc in his lower back, and another that bulged, caused him to miss the balance of that year plus all of last year. Once he began entertaining notions of playing again, four doctors hesitated to give him unqualified go-ahead signals, choosing instead to tell Stocker, now a senior, that the decision was his alone. ''They put it on my shoulders,'' Stocker said. ''It's the kind of where it could go tomorrow just from normal, everyday activity, or I could play 15 years without any problems.'' While Stocker's family and friends have assured him they'd support whatever choice he made, they also made it clear they'd prefer he call it a football career. Despite all that, Stocker has returned to the gridiron with two years of eligibility left, and he said the decision to play again was a no-brainer. ''I just couldn't do it ,'' he said. ''My last football memory wasn't of running off the field in victory, it was of being carted off the field at Columbia. I just couldn't deal with that. I had to come back.''

Friday, August 16, 2002

FOOTBALL: Lafayette sees strength in numbers
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
FORKS TWP. -- Pat Brown surveyed the football fields at Metzgar Field during Lafayette College's first full-squad practice session Thursday morning and it was obvious what he saw. "There's a lot more people out here," said Brown, the 6-foot-5, 258-pound junior from Bethlehem Catholic High School. "They said we have about 96 in camp." The Leopards open their season Sept. 7 at home against Monmouth. Brown said he remembered when he came into the Lafayette program in 2000 and was immediately put on the second team defense. "There were only four or five defensive ends on the team," Brown said. "Now, there's eight or nine. Last year's (freshman) class was bigger than mine, and this one coming in is even bigger."

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