Football falls to nationally ranked team

By Matthew Shaffer
Staff Writer

The Lions faced a tough defeat by Salisbury University on Saturday, Nov. 9, as they fell by a score of 62-20. It was a one-sided game from the opening kickoff to the final snap, as Salisbury put up five touchdowns in the first quarter alone. 

The Lions won the toss and deferred to begin the game, giving Salisbury the first possession. It wasted no time and drove down 60 yards for an eventual 12-yard rushing touchdown. On the ensuing kickoff, the College fumbled on its own 20-yard line and could not recover. 

On the very next play, Salisbury’s sophomore quarterback rushed in a 20-yard touchdown on a play action, making it 14-0 just four minutes into the game. The Lions’ offense was forced to punt on the next possession, setting up Salisbury for yet another chance to score early in the first. 

On third down right around midfield, Salisbury’s quarterback lofted a throw toward the sideline, which the receiver corralled at the 20-yard line and took to the house, making the score 21-0. 

The team settled down on offense and strung together two long plays that resulted in a scoring drive. Junior quarterback Andrew Donoghue found senior receiver Jack Clevenger on third and long to keep the drive going, and then connected with senior receiver Vinny Guckin for a 28-yard touchdown. 

Senior football players pose for a photo after their last home game (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk).

Just as the Lions had gained some momentum, Salisbury answered with a four-play, 56-yard drive and another score to make it 27-7 after a blocked extra point. The team finally got a stop on defense, but was unable to move the ball on offense, forcing a long punt from senior punter Zach Warcola. 

Warcola pinned Salisbury inside the 20-yard line, but on the first play of the drive, its quarterback connected with a receiver on an 85-yard touchdown, making the score 34-7 at the end of the first quarter, which took almost 45 minutes to finish. 

Salisbury would score two more touchdowns in the half, one off of a turnover on downs and the other on a fumble. One minute before halftime, Donoghue found Guckin for his second touchdown of the day. However, the Lions still trailed by 34 to end the half. 

The Lions had an impressive drive in the second half when they compiled an 20-play scoring drive that ate up 11 minutes, which came against Salisbury’s stout defense. However, the College had already fallen too far into the deficit to stay in the game, as it ultimately fell 62-20.

Despite the loss, the seniors played well on Senior Day, with Guckin catching two touchdowns and defensive back Xavier Santos getting seven tackles. 

The Lions will travel to Glassboro for their final game of the year, on Saturday, Nov. 16, against Rowan University.    

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