Sept. 14, 2013
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - After beating a top-10 opponent last weekend, Fordham took it one step further on Saturday by scoring the game-winning touchdown with four seconds left for a 30-29 win at Temple that was the first for a Patriot League team over an FBS opponent since 2003.
Michael Nebrich threw a 29-yard touchdown pass to Sam Ajala with four seconds remaining and Michael Marando tacked on the extra point to give Fordham the victory. The Rams start 3-0 for the first time since 1988, and first time in their FCS history. They earned the first win for a Patriot League team against an FBS opponent since Colgate beat Buffalo in 2003.
No. 19/22 Lehigh (2-0) went down to the wire for a second straight week, and survived yet again with a 28-25 victory at Monmouth. Senior wide receiver Lee Kurfis had 10 receptions for 211 yards and two touchdowns for his second straight 200-yard receiving game. He caught the game-winning 40-yard touchdown from Brandon Bialkowski with 10:02 left in the contest. Lehigh has won 10 straight regular-season non-League contests, and has also won 10 straight games decided by seven points or less.
While Fordham and Lehigh escaped with wins, Holy Cross (1-2) put together a dominant performance in its 52-21 triumph at Central Connecticut. The Crusaders ran for 419 yards, their highest total since 1983, led by Reggie Woods with a career-high 153 yards on 24 carries.
Three other Patriot League teams fell on Saturday. Colgate (0-3) dropped a 53-23 final at No. 9/12 New Hampshire as the Raiders played without starting quarterback Gavin McCarney. Lafayette (0-2) and Georgetown (1-2) each dropped home contests, with the Leopards falling to William & Mary 34-6 and the Hoyas losing to Marist 43-23.
All seven Patriot League football teams are in action next week, with six facing opponents from the Ivy League.
Recaps, box scores and a synopsis from each contest are included below.
Fordham 30 at Temple 29
*Fordham pulled off the dramatic win on a 29-yard touchdown pass from Michael Nebrich to Sam Ajala with four seconds left.
Watch the video of winning touchdown
*After a lengthy delay for a replay review and timeout, Michael Marando added the extra point to provide the winning margin.
*Nebrich picked up a pair of game-saving first downs on the final drive, both times needing a measurement and review of the spot for Fordham to keep possession.
*DeAndre Slate clinched the win with his third sack of the game on Temple's final play.
*Fordham earned its first-ever win over an FBS opponent, and first over a team that now resides at that level since beating Rutgers in 1954.
*It was the first FBS win for a Patriot League team since Colgate beat Buffalo in 2003.
*The victory was also the first-ever for a Patriot League squad against a team from a BCS conference.
*Fordham opens the year at 3-0 for the first time since 1988, the last season for the Rams before moving up from Division III to FCS.
*Nebrich completed 23-of-36 passes for 320 yards and two touchdowns, and also ran for 29 yards.
*Carlton Koonce carried 27 times for 168 yards and a touchdown and caught four passes for 126 yards.
*He went over 2,000 career rushing yards in the game, and now stands seventh in school history with a total of 2,162.
*Ajala notched seven receptions for 134 yards and a score while Tebucky Jones pulled in seven catches for 109 yards.
*The Rams held a 520-385 edge in total offense, including 320-140 through the air.
*Stephen Hodge led the defense with 11 tackles, a sack and a forced fumble, while Slate had six tackles to go with his three sacks.
*Fordham improved to 5-0 against Temple, with the previous matchups played from 1950-53.
No. 19/22 Lehigh 28, Monmouth 25
*Lehigh won another close game as it held off Monmouth 28-25 on the road Saturday.
*The Mountain Hawks won their 10th straight non-League regular-season contest.
*Lehigh also won for the 10th time in a row in a game decided by seven points or less.
*The Mountain Hawks won their 15th straight regular-season road game, a streak that dates all the way back to the 2010 season.
*Lehigh scored the winning points on a 40-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Bialkowski to Lee Kurfis with 10:02 to play.
*The drive was kept alive when Zach Hayden picked up a blocked punt and returned it 37 yards to midfield.
*Sacks by Isaiah Campbell and Colton Caslow helped stop Monmouth's final two possessions as Lehigh held on for the win.
*Kurfis had 10 receptions for 211 yards and two touchdowns.
*He is up to 17 catches for 433 yards and four scores in only two games this season.
*Kurfis became the first Patriot League wideout to go over 200 receiving yards in consecutive games.
*He joins former teammate Ryan Spadola (2011), Fordham's Javarus Dudley (2003) and Towson's Jamal White (1999) as the only receivers with multiple 200-yard games in the same season.
*Bialkowski completed 24-of-39 passes for 375 yards and three touchdowns in his second start.
*He has thrown for 741 yards and seven touchdowns in Lehigh's first two games.
*Keith Sherman added 107 yards on the ground as Lehigh held a 590-517 edge in total offense.
*Tyler Ward led the defense with 11 tackles and an interception.
*Lehigh starts 2-0 for the second season in a row.
Holy Cross 52 at Central Connecticut 21
*Holy Cross used an outstanding rushing attack and big second half for an easy win over Central Connecticut.
*The Crusaders put up 419 yards on the ground, their most in a single game since Oct. 29, 1983 against Columbia.
*Holy Cross' 28 rushing first downs were the most in Patriot League history, topping the previous mark of 23 set on four different occasions.
*The Crusaders carried the ball 72 times, just three away from the League record.
*Reggie Woods carried 24 times for a career-high 153 yards to lead the way.
*Holy Cross led 28-21 late in the third quarter before breaking the game open with the final 24 points of the contest.
*After a field goal made it 31-21 with a under a minute left in the third quarter, Roman San Doval had an 11-yard fumble return for a touchdown to give the Crusaders two scores in 14 seconds.
*Holy Cross tacked on two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter for the final margin.
*The Crusaders held a 522-346 edge in total offense and 419-162 on the ground.
*Ryan Laughlin threw for 103 yards and three scores and also ran for 64 and a score.
*Mike Fess had two touchdown receptions, while Gabe Guild, Elad Covaliu and Brendan Flaherty also scored on offense.
*Freshman linebacker Kyle Young led the defense with 10 tackles.
*Holy Cross posted its highest point total since the 2009 season, and wins a non-League road game for the first time since that year.
at No. 9/12 New Hampshire 53, Colgate 23
*Colgate played without Payton Award candidate quarterback Gavin McCarney, who missed the game with an injury.
*The Raiders fell behind 26-6 at the end of the first quarter and 40-6 by halftime.
*Dylan Finelli ran for 54 yards and two touchdowns as McCarney's replacement at quarterback, and also threw for a score.
*Demetrius Russell picked up 144 yards on the ground as the Raiders ran for 232, though they were outgained 551-278 for the game.
*Colgate starts 0-3 for the first time since 1996, the first season for 18th-year Head Coach Dick Biddle.
William & Mary 34 at Lafayette 6
*William & Mary scored the game's first 27 points in the first half on its way to the 34-6 win at Lafayette.
*The Tribe had two straight interception returns for touchdowns to build the lead to 21-0 early in the second quarter.
*Lafayette's scoring consisted of two field goals by Ryan Gralish.
*Zach Zweizig completed 31-of-47 passes for 239 yards.
*Lafayette starts the year at 0-2 for the third time in the past four seasons.
Marist 43 at Georgetown 23
*Georgetown fell behind by 28 points midway through the third quarter and could not recover in a 43-23 loss to Marist.
*The Hoyas played without their top two tacklers, Patriot League Preseason Defensive Player of the Year Dustin Wharton and Nick Alfieri.
*Isaiah Kempf completed 35-of-52 passes for 398 yards and two touchdowns.
*It was the most passing yards for a Georgetown quarterback since 1998.
*Zack Wilke hauled in a career-high 10 catches for 108 yards and a touchdown.
*Georgetown was trying to start 2-1 for a fourth-straight season.