Saturday, November 11, 2017

Explosive First Quarter Carries Albright Football Past Lebanon Valley College in 97th Meeting

A www, File Photo
READING, Pa. - The Albright football team zipped out to a 21-0 first-quarter lead on its way to a 28-14 victory over Lebanon Valley on Saturday at Shirk Stadium. The Albright defense forced five turnovers, including four in the first half. All 28 Albright points came off Lebanon Valley turnovers. The Dutchmen came into the game with a plus-16 turnover ratio.

Isaiah Baylor forced the first turnover when he stripped LVC running back Jon Jones and recovered the ensuing fumble at the Dutchmen 25. On the fifth play of the Lions' drive, Kyle Dickerson took a direct snap and on a sweep left from the 1.

The defense did all the work on the Lions' second touchdown. Lebanon Valley had the ball inside the Lions' 5, and Tim Pirrone ran left to the Albright 2. The defense stood him up, and Kyven Jones ripped the ball from his hands and raced 98 yards for the touchdown. Albright had a 14-0 lead with 7:26 left in the first quarter.

Albright's third touchdown drive also resulted from a Lebanon Valley turnover. Tyeair Diggs' fumble was recovered by Kali Boyce at the Albright 21. Jimmy Lahay completed back-to-back passes for 31 combined yards on the ensuing possession, and the highlight of the drive came on an acrobatic, leaping grab by Mike Jordan down the right sideline for 40 yards on a third-and-16 play. That put the ball at the LVC 7. Two plays later, Lahay found Cordero for the third time on the drive for a six-yard touchdown reception to make it 21-0 Albright with 44 seconds remaining in the first quarter.

Lahay went 14-for-23 for 160 yards and a touchdown.

Armon Jefferson recorded the fourth Lions' takeaway in the first half. He intercepted Pirrone at the LVC 33, but that drive stalled with a missed field goal.

The score stayed 21-0 until the third quarter. Lebanon Valley fought back with a pair of touchdowns in the third to trim its deficit into one possession. Pirrone scored on a 14-yard touchdown reception from Tyler Sterner. Steve Salerno ran it in from six yards out late in the quarter to make it 21-14.

The fifth Lions takeaway helped Albright to an insurance touchdown. Boyce intercepted Sterner at the Albright 23 and returned it to the 45. Four plays into the Albright possession, Alec Vignola hit Jordan down the right sideline for a 37-yard touchdown score to make it 28-14.

Jordan had a team-high 102 yards on four catches. Cordero led the Lions with six grabs for 64 yards. Malik Jackson and Dickerson each had four receptions. Dickerson also led the Lions with 44 rushing yards.

On the defensive side, Grant Boehler had a game-high 11 tackles. Baylor, Alex Isaac, Nate Steffen and Enosh Motachwa each finished with six tackles.
Albright honored its 16 seniors prior to the game.

Albright will learn its postseason fate on Sunday. If the Lions aren't selected to the NCAA tournament, the Lions are in position to host a game in the Centennial-MAC Bowl Series next Saturday against an opponent to be determined.

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