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WEEK #3: Brown 35, Lafayette 28

Sept. 25, 1999

PROVIDENCE, RI - A strong performance by the Lafayette offense wasn't enough as Lafayette lost on the road to Brown, 35-28 on Saturday.

Senior co-captain John Fistner (Bethlehem, PA/Bethlehem Catholic) helped the Leopards shun their 1999 tendency toward slow starts, intercepting Brown's first play from scrimmage and returning it 37 yards for a score. The Leopards' 7-0 lead was their last of the game.

The Leopards trailed 28-7 at halftime, but pulled within a touchdown at the end of the third quarter. Tailback Brian Tuma (Lebanon Township, NJ/Voorhees) rumbled in from four yards out to cap a 74-yard scoring drive at 11:49 in the third. Tuma finished the day with 17 carries for 78 yards. Junior quarterback Brian Buczek (Bloomingdale, NJ/DePaul) figured prominently in keeping the drive alive, running for 12 yards and a first down on the 4th-and-4 play prior to Tuma's touchdown.

Brown was forced to punt on its next posession, giving Lafayette the ball back on its own 43. Three pass plays and a Tuma run later, Lafayette was faced with a 2nd-and-3 situation at the Brown 24-yard line. Junior flanker Andy May Poughkeepsie, NY/Ketcham) broke open a 20-yard run on a reverse. Tuma punched it in from four yards out to end a six-play, 57-yard drive and bring Lafayette within seven at 28-21 with 7:49 left in the third.

Buczek was intercepted to start off the fourth quarter to give Brown the ball at the Lafayette 34. A 32-yard pass from Bears' quarterback James Perry to wide receiver Stephen Campbell set up a five-yard scoring run by Brown fullback Michael Malan with 13:02 left in the game. The TD gave Brown a 35-21 advantage.

Late in the fourth quarter, junior fullback Ryan Mayo grinded out runs of 33 and seven yards to set up the Leopards' final scoring play. Buczek hit junior split end Phil Yarberough (Lebanon, PA/Lebanon) with an eight-yard TD completion. Yarberough continued his strong play for the Leopards, catching six balls for 100 yards.

Placekicker Martin Brecht's (Jeanette, PAGreensburg Central Catholic) extra point with 3:16 left in the game brought the Leopards within seven.

The Lafayette defense couldn't hold Brown in the final three minutes, allowing the Bears three first downs and the opportunity to run out the clock with the final score of 35-28.

Buczek ended the day going 14-for-29 with 167 yards passing and 50 yards rushing.

Lafayette will open its home slate next Saturday, when it hosts Dartmouth at 1:30 p.m. at Fisher Field. Dartmouth is coming off a 35-3 loss on Saturday at the hands of the Patriot League's Colgate.