PAINESVILLE, Ohio – The Lake Erie College football team was in action today (Oct. 21) as they were defeated by Malone University, 24-13.
On the opening Pioneer possession, the Storm forced a Isaiah Wheeler (Copley, Ohio / Copley/ Stark State) forced a fumble for the Storm that was recovered by Jermichael Isom (Gadsden, Alabama / Gadsden). The Lake Erie offense turned the fumble recovery into a touchdown when Antwan Harris (Youngstown, Ohio / Austintown Fitch) capped the drive with a one yard rush, to give the Storm a 7-0 lead. Malone answered quickly with a 75 yard touchdown pass to tie the game with a little over six minutes remaining in the quarter. The teams entered the second quarter deadlocked at seven points apiece.
The Storm regained the lead early in the second quarter when Michael Muzic (Mentor, Ohio / Mentor) converted on a 29 yard field goal attempt to give the Storm a 10-7 edge. After nearly eight minutes of scoreless action Malone gained their first lead of the night with an 88 yard punt return for a touchdown. The Storm entered the intermission behind, 14-10.
At the half, the Storm offense was led by Desmon Turner (Cedar Bluff, Ala. / Fort Payne) as he carried the ball 11 times for 66 yards. Harris added to the rushing attack with 36 yards on five carries and a touchdown. Defensively, Jason Rogers (Laurel, Md. / DeMatha) had five tackles, three of which were for a loss. Andrew D'Eusanio (Willoughby, Ohio / Willoughby South) added to the strong defensive effort with a pair of sacks in the half.
The third quarter was a scoreless battle for the opening ten minutes before the Pioneers tacked on a field goal to take a 17-10 advantage. Late in the third quarter, Rogers forced a fumble that was recovered by Justin Growel (East Troy, Wisc. / East Troy) to set the Storm up deep in Malone territory. The Storm entered the fourth quarter behind, 17-10.
Lake Erie turned the fumble into points in the opening minute of the fourth quarter when Muzic connected on a 37 yard field goal, to make the score 17-13. The Pioneers answered back on the opening play of their ensuing drive with a 70 yard touchdown rush. The Storm fought hard for the remainder of the game, but fell 24-13.
Offensively the Storm was led by Turner as he finished the game with 78 yards rushing on 14 carries. Defensively, the Storm was led by Rogers as he had a team high 13 tackles, and a team leading three sacks. Rogers also forced a fumble for the Storm.
Lake Erie will return to the gridiron Saturday (Oct. 28) when they travel to take on Kentucky Wesleyan, with the game set to kick off at 1 p.m.