Football’s exhilarating 37-35 victory


Casey Bleuel

Reshirt senior Donny Holl (80) and redshirt senior Brendan Boylan (13) celebrate with senior Dylan Bongiorni (83) after his touchdown.

Liz Montemorano, Staff writer

The Mercyhurst football team defeated the West Chester Rams in an exhilarating game on Saturday, Sept. 12. This gave the Lakers a strong 2-0 start to the season.

The Lakers started off the scoring for the game with a touchdown by redshirt senior Brandon Brown-Dukes. This was his second touchdown of the season. Junior kicker, Dylan Kondis’ extra point kick was good, giving the Lakers a 7-0 win to begin the first quarter.

The Rams pulled ahead by scoring two touchdowns, creating a 14-7 lead over the Lakers. But, before the end of the first quarter, senior Dylan Bongiorni ran the ball and flew into a Laker first down. A pass from redshirt senior quarterback Brendan Boylan to Bongiorni tied the game, 14-14, by the end of the first quarter.

West Chester came back to score two more touchdowns to gain a 28-14 lead. Although the Lakers were able to gain yards in their next possession, they had to go for a field goal making the score 28-17.

On the next Lakers possession, a touchdown by senior F.J. Williams started closing the gap, making it a 28-24 game. The Rams came back and scored, holding onto the lead with a score of 35-24.

With a minute left in the second quarter, Williams scored another Hurst touchdown while playing through the pouring rain. The score was 35-31 West Chester at the end of the first half.

The beginning of the second half was a battle with the ball for both teams as none could get it into the end zone. Mistakes were being made due to the heavy rain. West Chester brought themselves to first and goal, but the Mercyhurst defense kept them out, even after four plays. The score remained 35-31 at the end of the third quarter.

The beginning of the fourth quarter started out fast. Junior Dorian Stevens intercepted a Rams ball but after the Lakers making a few first downs, Boylan threw an interception and Rams gained possession again.

The Lakers sacked West Chester’s quarterback, Pat Moriarty, and the Lakers got the ball inside the 15-yard line. Boylan ran the ball into the end zone, scoring another touchdown. This play earned Boylan the PSAC Western Division Offensive Player of the week.

“West Chester played great defense covering up the routes, and the line protected well. This allowed a hole on the right side to open up. I tried to get to first down to keep the game going,” said Boylan.

The Lakers went for a two-point conversion, but the Rams intercepted the pass and ran to their end zone for what would have been a safety. A flag on the play nullified the return. The Lakers were up 37-35 with less than a minute left in the game.

In the last minute it was West Chester’s ball, and they had three time-outs left.

Redshirt junior Tarique Ellis prevented a complete pass, giving the Rams the only option of kicking a field goal to win the game by one point.

In an exhilarating final play, the Ram’s kick was wide to the right, keeping the final score 37-35 Mercyhurst.

The Lakers travel to the University of Bloomsburg on Saturday Sept. 19, for their next game. Kick off is at 2 p.m. To view live tweets of the game, follow @MercyhurstFB on Twitter.