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LAMPETER - Armed with a big-play passing offense, opponents don't often focus on the bruising halfback.

Yet with the just 27 seconds left on the clock in a tie game versus Section Two foe Cocalico, the Lampeter-Strasburg Pioneers handed the ball to junior running back Shane Lawler, perhaps looking to setup a field goal try or a last-ditch pass to the endzone.

Lawler, however, would burst through the left side of the line before carrying a plethora of Eagles' defenders into the endzone for an incredible 18-yard score, lifting the Pioneers to a thrilling 21-14 victory Monday night at Lampeter-Strasburg high school.

"When I heard the call, I knew I just had to give all I had," Lawler said. "Get what I could and put my team in position (for a) first down or more. It was a great lead block; the line was blocking fantastic. I owe it all to them."

Surprising as the call seemed, the running attack was a force all night for Lampeter-Strasburg (1-1 Section Two, 3-2 overall), which was looking to erase the memory of a 42-14 loss to Solanco in their previous game.

The Pioneers ultimately pounded-out 248 yards on 36 carries Monday, quarterback Collin "Bear" Shank rushing for a 2-yard score in the second quarter and Lawler (18-168) nearly doubling his rushing output for the season.

"He's our go-to back right now," said Pioneers' head coach John Manion. "That's him hopefully making a statement that he's ready to carry us for a while."

For the Eagles (1-1, 2-3), Monday's make-up contest following last week's rainout marked the first game of the season for senior quarterback Dante Haines, who was returning from a knee injury suffered last season.

"At times (Haines) looked good and at times he looked like this was his first game in eleven months," said Cocalico head coach Dave Gingrich.

Still, with Cocalico entering the contest with just 139 passing yards for the season, Haines (6-for-11, 79 yards) threw a pretty 22-yard touchdown pass to D.J. Fabiani with 35 seconds left in the first half to narrow the Pioneers' halftime lead to 14-7.

The pass answered a similarly well-thrown corner route from Shank (11-for-27, 135 yards, 2 INTs) to Chad Gaudino for a 14-0 lead.

Monday's game, however, was a run-first kind of game, Cocalico back Hunter High gaining 73 yards on 10 second-half carries as the Eagles started to come back in the second half.

After Haines tied the score with a 3-yard run in the third - on a drive begun with Fabiani's one-handed interception of Shank - Cocalico seemed poised to take the lead late in the fourth quarter.

On a third-and-one play from the Pioneers' 45-yard line, however, the Eagles were called for a pair of procedure penalties, ultimately leading to a punt with a little over four minutes to go.

The punt by High set-up Lampeter-Strasburg at their own 33-yard line, the Pioneers driving 77 yards in 11 plays for the game-winning score.

"We knew there was not lot of clock time left, we had to pound the ball down (the field)," Lawler said. "We had faith in our coaches' calls. We just got what we could and we finished it off."

"We knew this was a key game for us," added Lawler. "We need to make ourselves someone worth noticing (in the section)."

Armed with a balanced offense and a featured back, it's the Pioneers who seem to be regaining their focus.

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COC LS

FIRST DOWNS 13 23

RUSHES / YARDS 40-199 36-248

PASSING YARDS 79 135

TOTAL YARDS 269 369

COMP / ATT / INT 6-12-1 11-27-2

SACKED / YDS LOST 1-9 2-14

FUMBLES / LOST 0-0 2-1

PUNTS / AVG 5-29.2 2-35

PENALTIES / YARDS 4-25 4-33

SCORE BY QUARTER:

|Q1| |Q2| |Q3| |Q4| --- FINAL

COC 00 07 07 00 --- 14

LS 00 14 00 07 --- 21

SCORING SUMMARY:

Q2 - LS - 8:15 C. Shank 2-yd run (P. Denlinger kick) 0-7

Q2 - LS - 2:39 C. Gaudino 24-yd pass from C. Shank (P. Denlinger kick) 0-14

Q2 - COC - 0:35 D. Fabiani 22-yd pass from D. Haines (M. Ulysse kick) 7-14

Q3 - COC - 4:35 D. Haines 3-yd run (M. Ulysse kick) 14-14

Q4 - LS - 0:21 S. Lawler 18-yd run (P. Denlinger kick) 14-21

INDIVIDUAL STATS:

PASSING: COC - D. Haines 6-11-1-79, D. Fabiani 0-1-0-0

LS - C. Shank 11-27-2-135

RECEIVING: COC - D. Fabiani 5-77, M. Ulysse 1-2

LS - C. Lopez 5-64, C. Gaudino 3-46, S. Lawler 2-14, A. Hay 1-11

RUSHING: COC - H. High 19-126, D. Haines 9-39, T. Fichthorn 5-14, D. Fabiani 4-11, M. Ulysse 3-9;

LS - S. Lawler 18-168, C. Shank 9-33, G. Groshong 3-26, C. Gaudino 6-21

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