Lafayette Football Concludes Spring Season With Maroon-White Game
EASTON, Pa. -- Lafayette football concluded its spring practice season with the annual Maroon-White Spring Game on Saturday afternoon at Fisher Stadium. The roster was divided into "Lafayette" and "Leopards" teams with the Leopards squad pulling out a 17-14 victory in the waning moments.
John Garrett, in his first season as head coach, used 11-on-11 and 7-on-7 situations during the two-hour scrimmage against an overcast sky and a slight rain on College Hill.
"Looking back on how we executed and played day one until here where we are now is just a remarkable improvement and a real credit to the guys," Garrett said during a post-game interview. "They are buying into how we practice, how we want them to play and the execution required. Certainly, we were, by no means, perfect, but we're really pleased with how much they've improved."
Junior Joey Chenoweth took the opening kick off for the Maroon and White. When the Lafayette offense took the field, it was rising senior Josh Davis under center. Davis capped off a 13-play drive with a four-yard pass to junior tight end Liam Reedy as Lafayette took a 7-0 lead that held through the end of the first quarter.
The defense took its turn on sophomore Austin McCrum's first 11-on-11 series of the second quarter. Junior LB Jerry Powe intercepted McCrum and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 Lafayette advantage.
Near the end of the first half, the defense helped out the Lafayette offense with a holding call on fourth down. Two plays later, Mike Lewis scrambled to find Matt Mrazek (6 catches for 54 yards) for a leaping grab and a first down that moved Lafayette inside the 10. The drive ended, however, when sophomore Eric Mitchell picked off Lewis in the end zone.
In the second half, the defense collected another turnover early on as sophomore Colin Thorne tipped McCrum's pass and junior Izaiah Avent intercepted it. Avent added another interception later in the game as did Parish Simmons.
A 45-yard pass from McCrum to Chenoweth (6 catches for 73 yards) ended the third quarter in 7-on-7 play. The defense answered with three straight stops, forcing a 25-yard Jacob Bissell field goal that got the Leopards on the scoreboard, trailing 14-3.
In the fourth quarter, junior Trent Crossan intercepted sophomore Blake Meyer with eight minutes left. On the next series, Lewis back under center, finishing a drive with a two-yard TD pass to senior Rocco Palumbo across the back of the end zone. That score brought the Leopards within 14-10.
It was another interception, this time by T.J. Jones that set up the Leopards' final and game-winning score. Jones' pick took the ball all the way back to the two-yard line. Sophomore Tyler West punched in a two-yard score as the Leopards took the lead for the first and final time in the 17-14 win.
Statistically, Davis finished 9-of-20 for 96 yards and a touchdown in the air and added 34 yards on five carries. McCrum completed 8-of-20 for 84 yards and threw three interceptions. Meyer finished 11-of-19 for 55 yards with one interception while Lewis was 7-of-13 for 57 yards with three picks and one touchdown.
The Leopards will open training camp in August in preparation for their season opener at Monmouth on Sept. 2.