De­fense rules day for the Lancers

Times Chronicle & Public Spirit - - SPORTS - By Kevin Hunter khunter@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @ on Twit­ter

ERDENHEIM >> “It’s a great day to be a Lancer” was the re­frain as mem­bers of the Bishop McDe­vitt foot­ball team took a knee in hud­dled cel­e­bra­tion, just out­side the south end zone.

Thanks to a sti­fling de­fen­sive ef­fort, Neu­mann-Goretti never en­tered that end zone — or the other — and wasn’t per­mit­ted to do much in be­tween as the Lancers recorded a 26-0 shutout of their ri­val on a sunny af­ter­noon at Spring­field Montco.

“We wanted this one bad. Last year, they em­bar­rassed us,” de­fen­sive end Ty­rone Fowler said of the Saints’ 42-7 vic­tory in 2017. “This one was re­ally per­sonal. We had to show up. We had to.”

Fowler showed up right away, scoop­ing up a fum­ble by Goretti quar­ter­back Rausheen Lively and re­turn­ing it 42 yards for a score. The game was just 1 minute and 44 sec­onds old, and the Lancers had them­selves a 7-0 lead.

Bishop McDe­vitt, rais­ing its over­all record to 5-1 and its Philadel­phia Catholic League Blue Di­vi­sion mark to 3-0, built a 20-0 lead in the first quar­ter, putting the Saints (1-2, 1-2 PCL Blue) in too big a hole to over­come.

“We had this one cir­cled since last year,” said Fowler, who helped the Lancers crash the pocket all af­ter­noon. “Our coaches made ad­just­ments for us for this one to get us in good po­si­tions, and we just went on from there.”

Lively was flushed from the pocket on the third play from scrim­mage, en­veloped by the McDe­vitt pres­sure, and the ball was jarred loose. Fowler scooped it up and raced down the side­line.

“That’s some­thing we joke about all the time,” the 6-foot-3, 220-pound ju­nior said of scor­ing a TD. “I was just ex­cited. I was like ‘I re­ally just scored.’”

The Lancers were on their way. “That set the tone. And it set it high too,” Fowler said. “As soon as we got that touch­down, every­body was con­fi­dent.”

The Lancers gained 182 yards

on the ground, in­clud­ing 127 and a pair of touch­downs by Jon Luke Peaker, and also got 105 yards through the air from quar­ter­back Jovon Hin­ton.

McDe­vitt ex­tended its lead to 20-0 in the first quar­ter on touch­down runs by Peaker (19 yds) and Hin­ton (one yard), and then blew it open to 26-0 in the third quar­ter on Peaker’s sec­ond score (three yards).

Tysheem John­son did some pro­duc­tive run­ning for the Saints, gain­ing 57 yards on three car­ries, but the vis­i­tors were held to un­der 200 yards of of­fense.

“We feed off of them,” coach Mike Watkins said of his de­fense. “The way that we play on de­fense re­ally sets the tone.

“It’s al­ways been that way here.”

Get­ting it done up front and in the back end, the Lancers also got a pair of in­ter­cep­tions by Joachim McElroy. It was a great day to be a Lancer and is quickly de­vel­op­ing into a great year.

“It feels good (to be 5-1),” Watkins said. “I tell these guys af­ter the wins, ‘en­joy it.’ We don’t wanna turn the page yet. They gotta en­joy it. They gotta em­brace what this feels like. And we’ll get to work on Mon­day, but they have to take time to cel­e­brate what they’ve achieved.”

KEV HUNTER/DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Ty­rone Fowler re­turned a fum­ble 42 yards for a touch­down in Sat­ur­day’s 26-0 Bishop McDe­vitt vic­tory over Neu­mann-Goretti.

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