LHU destroys Cheyney, 62-0
By BILL ALBRIGHT EasternPAFootball.com/WesternPAFootball.net Senior Writer
LOCK HAVEN — How does an 0-5 football team spell relief? In the case of the Lock Haven University football team the answer is simply C-H-E-Y-N-E-Y.
Coming out like a bunch of gangbusters, the Bald Eagles scored on their first three possessions and they never looked back as they annihilated the Wolves, 62-0, Saturday afternoon at Hubert Jack Stadium.
“Today we played the style of football that we can play,” said LHU head coach Dave Taynor. “When you look at the first five games of the year, I don’t know if we were ready for those games yet, but we’ll get there. We have a good group up front that can be physical, we have a good, young quarterback who can do some things and he is going to constantly improve in the passing game because he has a cannon of an arm.”
With starting quarterback Jimmy Strickland on the shelf with an injury, Taynor gave the call to freshman Kyle Knight and Knight was nothing less than outstanding.
Scoring all three LHU first period touchdowns on runs of one, 33 and five yards, Knight led the offense that rolled up a total of 296 yards rushing in the first half before finishing with 460 for the game, a new LHU all-time record.
“I have been getting reps each week and when Jimmy (Strickland) wasn’t feeling good I decided that I was going to step in and take over the spot,” explained Knight. “I was able to come out today and play well and I am happy about that.”
Still trying to work his way back to one hundred percent after an injury, John Ford capped the first half scoring with a 40-yard jaunt to paydirt. For the game, Ford finished with 93 yards on just nine tries for his one score.
To begin the second half, the Bald Eagles scored before they realized their first possession when Isaiah Flamer caused a Cheyney fumble and defensive back Dontae Mason took the recovery 19 yards to the house.
The PAT was no good, but less than two minutes into the second half, the Bald Eagle lead had ballooned to 34-0.
On their first possession of the second half, it was more good things for LHU as Knight scored his fourth TD of the game from three yards out. For the game, the true freshman finished with 181 net yards rushing and four scores.
“Once that happened (scoring the first four touchdowns) I felt a lot more relaxed,” said Knight. “When the offensive line gives you holes as big as they were today, it makes it a lot easier. They (the O linemen) were just great today. They did a heckuva job.”
While Knight did his work on offense, Carlos Balkcom did a little work of his own on defense by returning one of his two interceptions 50 yards for the score. Nick Boumerhi’s PAT made it 48-0 LHU.
With the LHU defensive unit continuing to hold the Wolves off the scoreboard, Corey Blakey scampered 10 yards for a score before Tavian Dorsey was on the receiving end of a 22-yard scoring aerial from Cameron Tobias to set the final. Blakey also surpassed the century mark in rushing yardage with 122 yards on just nine totes.
“How about that defense,” said Taynor with a smile. “They pitched a shutout and I have been waiting for the three years I have been here for that to happen. We have a tradition after a shutout where the DC (defensive coordinator) gets the game ball, he gets to do the count at the end of the game, and overall, it was just an awesome performance by the defensive guys who put a couple of touchdowns on the board as well.”
And what about the guys up front who never get their name or number called unless they do something wrong?
“Those guys, save one drive which we sort of just covered guys up, just mashed their defensive linemen at the point of attack,” praised Taynor. “I was very, very happy with that group. They were outstanding today.”
So what does a win like this mean to the young Bald Eagles?
“You get somewhat of a payoff for all the work you put in,” Taynor said. “We played St. Francis who beat Liberty and Liberty beat Baylor, but there were times when we controlled the line of scrimmage (in the St. Francis game) with our guys up front. Since that time, we have seen bits and pieces of it, but today we were able to put it all together.”
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