PHILADELPHIA — The Lansdale Catholic football team welcomed the opportunity to avenge its heartbreaking loss to Neumann-Goretti last season. The Saints stopped their four-game win streak with a one-point win a season ago, and with the same scenario at the South Philadelphia Supersite on Saturday, the Crusaders capitalized on early miscues and strong field position to pick up the 36-13 win.
The defense once again paved the way to a perfect start. The Saints (2-2) started the night going backwards and fumbled on their own three yard line. It was only the second offensive play of the game for the Crusaders (5-0) and sophomore Ryan Quigley twisted into the end zone from the one yard line. Quigley finished with 127 yards rushing.
“We have a great offensive line,” Quigley said. “I found the holes and hit them. I did not worry about anything, I just exploded. We saw the four and five holes were open and we took advantage of them.”
Quigley was one-third of the three headed monster in the backfield for the Crusaders. Along with seniors Mike Iacono and Mike Isabella the group had 125 rushing yards at the half and held a 22-6 lead. The Crusaders finished with 226 rushing yards in the win. Isabella scored two touchdowns in the first half, an 11 yard run and a 15 yard catch. He finished with 63 total yards. Senior Phil Seger added a late rushing touchdown.
“Their defense was really trying to take away our run, but we were still able to move the ball,” Crusaders coach Tom Kirk said. “Ryan maybe had some more opportunities tonight, and he ran terrific, but (Mike) Iacono is in there blocking for him. Those runs, Iacono is leading the way.”
Despite a 20 yard touchdown run from Sihmare Morgan in the second quarter the Saints were unable to gain anything on the ground. The Crusader linebackers played downhill and clogged the A gap, the B gap, and a Z gap if there was one. The Saints finished with zero rushing yards in the loss. Jude Coughlin had three sacks for the Crusaders.
“Our goal going in was to stop the run first, which we did pretty well,” Coughlin said. “We made sure as a defensive line we got as much pressure on the quarterback as possible. When they went no-tight I came hard off the edge and made a play.”
Trailing by two scores the Saints were not going to stop surging, but the Crusaders were prepared for it. They continually disguised their coverage on 6-foot-6 wide receiver Jamal Custis. With a safety always waiting to help over top, the Syracuse recruit was contained for a mere 74 yards on five catches. Saints’ quarterback Ray Lenhart’s final intended pass for Custis was intercepted by Quigley, who took it 76 yards for the score, which sewed up the 5-0 start.
“We are never satisfied,” Quigley said. “It is going to get harder and harder. We have to come prepared every week.”
Lansdale Catholic 36, Neumann-Goretti 13
Lansdale Catholic 14 8 0 14 – 36
Neumann-Goretti 0 6 0 7 – 6
LC – Ryan Quigley one yard run (Mike Iacono converts)
LC – Mike Isabella 15 yard pass from Joe Pinzka (conversion failed)
NG – Sihmare Morgan 20 yard run (kick failed)
LC – Isabella 11 yard run (Quigley converts)
LC – Quigley 76 yard interception return (Esterle kick)
LC – Phil Seger 12 yard run (Esterle kick)
NG – Richardson 14 yard pass from Williams (Beck kick)
First downs 16 9
Rushing yards 226 0
Passing yards 27 170
Total yards 253 170
Passing (c-a-i) (3-6-0) (14-32-1)
Fumbles-lost 2-1 4-2
Punts-avg 3-30 7-24
Penalties 2-10 2-15
Lansdale Catholic – Quigley 18-127, TD; Isabella 7-48, TD; Iacono 12-45; Seger 3-16; TD; Fenstermacher 2-8; Cassady 1-(-4); Talley 1-(-6); Pinzka 3-(-8)
Neuamann Goretti – Morgan 10-34, TD; Williams 1-(-3); Lenhart 6-(-31)
Lansdale Catholic – Pinzka 3-6-0 – 27, TD
Neumann Goretti – Lenhart 11-25-1 – 109; Williams 3-7-0 – 61, TD
Lansdale Catholic – Iacono 2-12; Isabella 1-15, TD
Neumann Goretti – Custis 5-74; Brown 5-57; Martin 2-31; Richardson 1-14, TD; Morgan 2-8;
Lansdale Catholic – Coughlin (3), Talley
Neumann Goretti – Matthews, Saunders, Moody
Lansdale Catholic - none
Neuamnn Goretti - Quigley
Follow Andrew Marcus on Twitter @amarcus515.