Football locks down Eagles

The Gannon University football team took a page from Bachman-Turner Overdrive, and took care of business Saturday, defeating Lock Haven 37-13 at Gannon University Field.

Amid driving rain and wind gusts that approached 50 miles per hour, Gannon’s defense bolted down Lock Haven’s offense, limiting the Bald Eagles to 104 total offensive yards.

Gannon coach Jim Kiernan said the dreary weather determined the game’s ground-it-out approach.

“Weather dictated a lot of what we were able to do both offensively and defensively,” Kiernan said. “It was unfortunate that without the wind, it would have been better if we could have gotten a better idea of where our offense is at in terms of progress.”

The Gannon victory put the Knights on the winning track, as they evened their record in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference’s Western division at 2-2, and are now just one game below .500 at 3-4.

Gannon took a 9-7 lead to the half, after Alex Papson scored his third touchdown of the season.

In the second half, the Knights pulled away with a touchdown off a blocked punt, and an interception returned for a touchdown.

The Knights made defense their calling card Saturday, as they allowed just one offensive touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

Senior defensive tackle Randy Colling led Gannon’s defense, registering two quarterback sacks to go along with 11 tackles, four of which took place behind the line of scrimmage.

“We stopped a lot of the run, and that was a big element of their game,” Colling said. “We had the pick-six and a few interceptions, so we were really clicking.”

On offense, Papson compiled his first career 100-yard rushing game, compiling 108 yards on 28 carries.

Papson said the windy conditions made it possible for his workload.

“It’s almost an unsaid thing before the game with that kind of weather, that the ball is going to be kept on the ground,” Papson said. “The offensive line did a good job, and I was able to get through the holes.”

Redshirt freshman quarterback Ty Watson started the game, and completed 5-of-16 passes for 57 yards and a touchdown. Daniel Tapscott, who missed Gannon’s 33-6 loss to California University of Pennsylvania on Oct. 8 because of a shoulder injury, saw limited action, going 2-for-3 for 26 yards and an interception.

Kiernan said Tapscott’s injury is just a matter of wear and tear, and the redshirt freshman’s starting job will be waiting when he fully recovers.

“Dan has done nothing to lose the job,” Kiernan said. “The design was for him to come in and just get a few reps.”

The Knights will look to even their record when they travel to face Indiana University of Pennsylvania Saturday at 1 p.m.

With four games remaining, Kiernan said there is still an opportunity for the playoffs.

“You look at the West and the scheduling, and we would need help, but the possibilities still exist that way.”


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