Maurer, McCourt Power Lafayette to 35-14 Win at Columbia
Oct. 9, 2004
McCourt carried 36 times for 173 yards, scoring once, and tossed a 28-yard touchdown pass to Justin Lauver. He also caught four passes for 37 yards. Maurer completed 12-of-14 aerials for 101 yards and two touchdowns. He also tacked on a 63-yard touchdown scamper in the third quarter.
Lafayette (4-2 overall) is over .500 after six games for the first time since 1993.
The opportunistic Leopards took advantage of a trio of fourth-down plays that went in their favor to build a 21-0 halftime lead. Mike Davis' punt on the game's opening possession hit a Columbia player downfield in the back. Bryan Kazimierowski recovered the loose ball, and on second down, Maurer swung a pass out to Brandon Stanford who followed a block from Travis Hutson to go into the end zone untouched.
Later in the quarter, Kazimierowski knocked away a pass in the end zone on a fake field goal attempt. The Leopards marched 80 yards in 11 plays following the stop, with Maurer rolling right off a play-action fake and hitting a wide-open Travis Hutson in the middle of the end zone for his first career touchdown catch.
Columbia (0-4) looked to have converted a fourth-and-seven in the second quarter, but John Reuter was ruled out of bounds on the reception. The Lafayette offense erased nearly six minutes off the clock on the ensuing drive, with McCourt crashing in from the three-yard line. McCourt had kept the drive alive on the previous play, picking up 14 yards on a counter play off the left side on third-and-14 from the 17.
The opening minutes of the second half looked more like a track meet than a football game, with the teams finding the end zone four times in the first 12:05 of the half.
The Lions opened the scoring with a 24-yard toss from Jeff Otis to Brandon Bowser on the half's opening possession. Lafayette answered just three plays later on Maurer's sprint down the sideline. On third-and-seven, Maurer was immediately pressured after dropping back. He evaded the initial rush and was never touched after getting back to the line of scrimmage.
Otis' second touchdown toss, this one from seven yards, cut the deficit to 28-14 just three minutes later. McCourt, however, ended any thoughts of a Columbia comeback on Lafayette's next possession. In nine plays, McCourt ran four times for 15 yards, caught a 13-yard pass and tossed the 28-yard scoring pass to Lauver. McCourt took a pitch to the right on the play, then stepped back and hit Lauver, who did not have a defender within 15 yards of him as he caught the pass at the goal line.
McCourt's 173 rushing yards was the fifth-highest total of his career. It also marked his 19th career 100-yard rushing game and second in as many weeks. He is now 3-of-5 passing in his career, with all three completions going for touchdowns.
Maurice Bennett and Blake Costanzo collected 12 and 11 tackles, respectively, to pace the Leopard defense. Costanzo also tallied two tackles for a loss of 10 yards and recovered a fumble on Columbia's final drive of the day.
Otis completed 29-of-43 passes for 296 yards. Wade Fletcher caught 10 balls for 121 yards, while Bowser, the Ivy League's leading receiver, hauled in eight for 81 yards.
Lafayette returns to Patriot League play next Saturday, visiting Bucknell. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
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