Key Returning Swimmers: Mike McBride, Colin Happ, John Brady (Co-Captains)
Key Departing Swimmers: All 12 seniors.
Coming off of probably two of the best years in recent time, the two time defending State Champions are trying to get back to States for the 3rd straight year. Last year, the Explorers dominated PCL’s for the 25th straight year, District 12 for the 5th straight year, and States for the 2nd year in a row. The team was led by all twelve seniors which included a few All- Americans. “LaSalle graduated the greatest swimming class ever” says Coach Lichtner. Everyone knew how good they were last year and almost knew they were going to be at the top once again. This year is different. The team is a very young and talented one and it will be a struggle to replace such a good team. The Explorers have basically a new team including some talented freshman that will be led by captains, Mike McBride, Colin Happ, and John Brady.
Notable Swim Meets:
Away vs. Christian Brothers Academy @ La Salle University (December 21st 12:00)
Last year’s meeting between the two schools had the Explorers out on top for the first time ever against a very talented Christian Brother’s team. This meet will be one of the biggest meets of the season for the Explorers as they look to return to states for the 3rd straight year.
Away vs. Malvern Prep (January 3rd 3:45)
Although La Salle hasn’t faced Malvern in a few years, they have grown to be one of the best in the area. Coach Lichtner says “Malvern is the type of that La Salle wants to go up against and wants to swim against. They have a very classy, good, swimming program.” Look for this meet to be an exciting one in the New Year.
Home vs. St. Joseph’s Prep (February 4th 7:00 PM)
Any meeting with St. Joe’s Prep is an exciting one. La Salle out swam their rival St. Joes last year 51 – 38. With a bright and talented young team, the Explorers looks to finish off the season and get back to PCL’s to continue their streak of twenty- five straight years winning.
The mindset of some of the Explorer players before Friday night's game was that Holy Ghost Prep would not be the team like they have been the past two years. The Firebirds did lose a lot of their forwards as well as defenseman from last year, whereas La Salle, who did also lose huge pieces such as Nick Master and Brendan Jaquay, still has experience in guys like Andrew Romano and Collin and Kevin Charyszyn.
But what occurred instead was a very wild matchup, typical of how La Salle-Holy Ghost Prep games have been for the past few seasons.
The game ended up to be a La Salle come-from-behind 4-4 tie (similar to last year's meeting at the same exact Northeast Philly Flyers Skate Zone). The game was energy-filled right from the start, as freshman Jack McDonough scored the opening goal a few minutes into the opening period before Holy Ghost would even up the game at 1 on their first powerplay goal of the night.
After McDonough's second goal however, things got very crazy.
At around the 2:50 mark, senior forward Kevin Charyszyn was on the opposite end of a clean hit delivered by a Firebird player near La Salle's bench closer to center ice. Play stopped a few seconds after the hit as Charyszyn was very slow getting up. He stayed on the ice for the next shift, when all chaos broke loose. After an Albert Washco shot twenty-two seconds after the hit on Charyszyn, the senior forward went after one of the Holy Ghost players, shoving him to the ground. Two Firebirds tried to break up the one-sided scuffle, but made it worse. Charyszyn took off his helmet and his gloves as teammates and referees attempted to break the crowd up, and threw a few punches at one of the Firebirds.
Because of his actions, he was given a game misconduct, and the Explorers had to work on a seven minute penalty kill. The first period ended with no harm from the Charyszyn incident, but it would play a role right at the beginning of the period. Ghost tied the game seven seconds into the 2nd stanza and would score another goal in the long powerplay to give them a 3-2 lead. The period would end at 4-2 after their 4th powerplay goal of the game. Things looked very bleak for the Explorers during the 2nd intermission.
But the 3rd period proved to be sixteen minutes of Explorer dominated hockey, capped off by two powerplay goals, first by Andrew Romano with a few minutes into the period and shortly thereafter another powerplay goal by Collin Charyszyn. The Explorers got two more powerplay chances in the remaining 5:09 of the game, but failed to score, although freshman Albert Washco had a plethora of chances in the first man-advantage, including three in a span of about fifteen seconds.
This was La Salle's first league game of the season and are now 1-0-2 overall. Next week, the Explorers close out the month of November as they take on Cardinal O'Hara on Wednesday night at 7:20 at Hatfield Ice.
The La Salle Explorers Varsity basketball team will begin their season by traveling to State College this Friday, December 6th, where they will take on state power North Allegheny in the opening round of the annual State College High School tournament.
The Explorers are coming off an excellent season of 15 and 7, but look to avenge a first round overtime loss from the same tournament last year with a win to start their campaign. The tournament consists of four excellent teams: La Salle, Northern Allegheny, Norristown, and State College. The winner of LaSalle’s matchup will face the winner of Norristown vs. State College in the championship game on Saturday, December 7th.
Head Coach Joe Dempsey will look to juniors Shawn Witherspoon, Najee Walls, David Krmpotich, and Dan Corr to contribute. Also looking to help are seniors Jalen Herdsman, Sean Greenburg, and Dom Couci, along with sophomores Chuck Champion, Shane Stark, and Ryan McTamne.
The team boasts loads of talent, but they will lose seven seniors and over 90% of their scoring from the 2012-2013 campaign, including division 1 players Amar Stukes (LaSalle) and Steve Smith (Fairfield).
Coming off of two solid scrimmage performances, the Explorers will look to make a run in the Catholic League playoffs along with the PIAA AAAA state tournament. With such a strong fielded opening tournament, the Explorers are sure to gain pivotal experience before opening up their Catholic League schedule with Father Judge on Friday, January 3rd.
Good luck to the team as they open up what is sure to be an exciting 2013-2014 season.
It was a tough post-season to say the least and with that a long off-season. The La Salle Varsity Basketball team had high hopes riding into the PCL playoffs. Seniors Amar Stukes and Steve Smith were leading the way as two of the top players in the Catholic League.
The first round game was against a rival, St. Joe’s Prep. What happened next was something that would trouble the La Salle fan base for the month. After what had been a stellar 9-5 season, La Salle lost. With a couple of minutes left in the fourth quarter, Coach Joe Dempsey knew it was over, there would be no comeback, as he pulled his starters of the floor. This is the game that would haunt the Explorers for the next off-season after the 2012-13 season.
Here we are though back in it again. With the off-season coming to a close, the La Salle Explorers will look to new heights hoping that this year will be a championship year.
Tryouts are beginning November 18th giving Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors a chance to crack this roster. Some will make it. Some will come close, landing themselves a spot on the JV team. Some will fail. Ladies and Gentlemen, I welcome you back to another season of La Salle Basketball.
As all of the fall sports come to a close, the winter season is starting to warm up. Like what happened with the Fall Sports, the Sports Information Club will provide you with previews of each Winter sport (all Winter sports except hockey begin in the beginning of December).
To recap the fall season: the Golf team won PCL and District XII titles and placed 3rd in their first ever appearance in the PIAA State Golf Championship. Soccer qualified for PCL playoffs, but fell to Lansdale Catholic in the quarterfinals. Cross Country, Water Polo, and Football are still going on. Cross Country concludes Saturday in Hershey, as Brendan Bilotta and Pat Grant will run in the State Championship. The team also placed 2nd in the PCL and District XII races. Water Polo will also conclude its season this weekend in Cumberland Valley in the PA State Tournament. They are the #8 seed after defeating Governor Mifflin on the road in what Coach Duncheskie called "their best win since entering the PIAA." Finally, football plays Father Judge in a 2-3 matchup Friday night at 7 PM at Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School in the PCL Semifinals. The team is looking to win their 6th straight PCL Championship.
2012 Record: 22-4-1 (16-0-1 in League)
AAA Flyers Cup Champions (3rd Consecutive Championship)
Lost in State Championship to North Allegheny 6-2
Key Returning Players: Andrew Romano, Kevin Charyszyn, Collin Charyszyn, Collin Gustafson, Pierce Cunneen, Corbin Gustafson, Connor Lloyd, Nick Washco, Chris Dal Farra, Harrison Feeney
Key Departing Players: Nick Master (UMass-Lowell - Cedar Rapids RoughRiders of USHL), Brendan Jaquay, Mike Pascali, Matt Krulikowski (Temple), Ryan Williams (Drexel), Andrew Grajewski, Ryan Walters
Winning 3 straight Flyers Cup Championships is a hard feat to do in Philadelphia hockey. The Explorers look to win their 4th straight title. But they won't have most of their scoring from last season. Two-thirds of the top line are gone in Nick Master and Brendan Jaquay (Kevin Charyszyn joined late in the season after healing from an injury), and players such as dynamic forward Ryan Williams, team captain defenseman Mike Pascali, and offensive-defenseman Andrew Grajewski also depart. The top line however should not suffer from the loss of the two ex-Explorer and JR Flyer teammates. Romano and Charyszyn both play on the same JR Flyer team as Jaquay and Master did. Underclassmen such as Connor Lloyd and Nick Washco, along with JV players such as Jeff Gratz, will have to makeup for the loss of scoring from last year. On defense, goalies Corbin Gustafson and Harrison Feeney return for another season behind the net, while defensemen Collin Charyszyn and Collin Gustafson will be the main men on the blue line.
This is the first time that these two teams meet since the Flyers Cup Championship Game in the Wells Fargo Center. It will be a very early test for the Explorers (3rd game in the regular season).
Home vs. Father Judge (December 12th 7:20)
The Father Judge games are always filled with what hockey fans dream of: scoring, saves, hitting, and chirping. Look for it to continue again this season.
Home vs. Malvern Prep (January 3rd 9:00)
In two of their meetings last year (both at home), La Salle dominated the Friars, including in the Flyers Cup Semifinals. Malvern looks to gain revenge in their first meeting of the season.
Away vs. Princeton Day School (January 22nd 6:00)
Although to get to the game you have to go across the state, this matchup should not be a let down. Last season, the Explorers tied the game at 1 with less than 10 seconds left in regulation on a goal by Ryan Williams before falling in overtime. The Explorers should play well if their offense is not cold.
Home vs. St. Joe's Prep (February 21st 7:20)
This is the second-to-last game of the regular season, and what better way than to play the home finale against archival St. Joe's Prep. The Explorers won both meetings last year, but just came up with the win in their second game, which they were away.
Other Notable Games:
Away vs. Hill School (December 4th 6:30)
Home vs. Morristown-Beard School (December 18th 4:00)
Mount St. Charles Academy Tournament (Begins December 26th)
La Salle's rivalry with Roman Catholic almost goes back to the beginning of time. In fact, this past Sunday, October 13, 2013, was the 110th Anniversary of La Salle's first game ever, a matchup against Catholic High (the original name for Roman Catholic), a game won by the Cahillites by the unlikely score of 6-5. Their nickname of "Cahillites" came from their founder, Thomas Cahill, a 19th Century Philadelphia merchant who felt the need to establish a Catholic high school offering free tuition to Catholic boys (at that time, anyway!). The school opened its doors in 1890, had some tenuous times in the 1980's, but is now thriving.
La Salle's one-year experiment with football took a hiatus until 1915, and their only loss in that 3-1-3 season was to Catholic, 14-0. In 1916, they registered their first victory over the Cahillites, 13-0, on touchdowns by Panzullo and the legendary Kenneth "Cy" Simendinger. The triumvirate of La Salle, Catholic, and St. Joseph's Prep played each other in those years to determine a mythical Catholic champion, won in 1916 by St. Joseph's Prep, who defeated La Salle, 21-0.
But there was trouble on the horizon between the three schools. Catholic High protested that both La Salle and St. Joseph's were violating the spirit of the competition by utilizing some college players on their teams. This at the time was a natural occurrence, and easy for schools like La Salle and St. Joe's to consider, having a college affiliated directly with a high school. So, in 1917, Catholic High chose to avoid scheduling La Salle, and good for them that they didn't, because the Blue and Gold were a dominant team, going 6-0-0 in their best season yet. La Salle did not field a team in 1918 due to the war, but returned in 1919, again without Catholic on their schedule.
Finally, an "armistice" was reached with the formation of the Catholic League, spearheaded by Father John Bonner of Catholic High (eventually becoming none other than Monsignor Bonner). The schools would agree to forego the use of college players, and two more teams entered the round robin, including the fledgling Burrs of West Catholic, and Villanova Prep, the predecessor to Malvern Prep.
La Salle had a strange year under coach Lou Little in their first season in the Catholic League, going 1-2-3, including a 6-0 loss to Catholic. For some reason, La Salle found the Catholic League not to their liking, and they dropped out in 1921 and 1922, playing an independent schedule, and again not playing Catholic in those years. They returned in 1923, and received a rude welcome by most teams, including Catholic, who whitewashed them, 32-0, and the Cahillites also beat them by identical 13-0 scores in 1924 and 1925. But in 1926, La Salle went 5-2-0, and defeated Catholic 14-0, with a terrific goal line stand, and touchdowns by John Ounsworth and Harry Bausch. This set the stage for a showdown in the 1927 season.
La Salle defeated Catholic, 6-0, as quarterback Francis "Dutchy" Linus raced 90 yards for the only touchdown of the game. La Salle and Catholic ended the league season with identical 5-1 records, as La Salle's only blemish was due to an 8-0 loss to St. Joseph's Prep. This necessitated a playoff game, as La Salle had an opportunity for their first ever Catholic League championship in football. But it wasn't to be, as the Cahillites ran all over the yet-to-be-named Explorers, 26-0, to win the championship. Incredibly and ironically, the next two times this happened to La Salle occurred in 1959 and 1961, where a regular-season win was followed by a championship loss, both times to Monsignor Bonner High School, named after La Salle's "nemesis" of forty years before back at Catholic High.
Things went from bad to worse for La Salle, as they were accused of using some Jewish ringers from South Philadelphia on the team, and were booted out of the Catholic League between 1928 and 1933. And again, during that time in exile, Catholic High eschewed the opportunity to meet La Salle on the gridiron.
La Salle returned to the fold in 1934, and their 0-8-1 season was highlighted by a close loss to Catholic, 7-6, and Catholic won again in 1935, 19-6. La Salle earned ties in both 1936 and 1939, but couldn't defeat their original rivals, now known as Roman Catholic, until 1940. The 18-0 win, played at Cahill Field, featured a TD pass from John Mlodzianowski to John Ghee, and also a TD pass from Charlie Schaeffer to Joe McGeary. This win brought La Salle's overall record versus Roman Catholic to 4-11-2.
The rivalry would go back and forth in the 1940's, with Roman Catholic holding a slight edge. La Salle won a great game in 1948, 19-14; in the last 30 seconds, the Little Explorers scored on a pass from Bill Ortman to Tom McGowan to pull out the victory. Roman Catholic won 4 straight battles between 1949 and 1952, including a 60-6 bloodletting in 1951, but the 1953 game was an exciting affair, ending in a 25-25 tie, as Bill Magee spearheaded a late drive for the Explorers, passing to Ray Frankson for the touchdown, and Ed Nessler added the point for the tie. At this point in the rivalry, La Salle's overall record against the Cahillites stood at 7-20-3. But the tide would soon change.
The 1954 team and the 1955 team pitched shutouts against the boys from Broad and Vine. The 1955 game featured two scoring runs by Bill Dick, and the win assured La Salle of its first ever Catholic League championship (no playoffs unless a tie in the regular season standings back in the day). Another win in 1956, 21-14, as Lou Greco scored all three touchdowns to pace the Little Explorers. And then 1957's team demolished Roman, 53-12, on their way to the PCL Championship. The subsequent scores from 1958 to 1962 were 34-0, 28-6, 12-0, 50-0, and 28-6, La Salle. The split into Northern and Southern Divisions starting with the 1963 season saved Roman from further defeats from the Blue and Gold in the "crew cut" years. The overall record had now improved to 16-20-3.
And there it stood, for many, many years. The teams did not play each other in any pre-season games, and it took a championship game to get them together again. That game was in 1989, at Villanova Stadium, and the great Explorer defense throttled the Cahillite offense, 13-0, as La Salle scored on Jim Convey's fumble recovery in the end zone, and Brian Daly's second half kickoff return. Another decade would pass before another meeting, but this time, history repeated itself.
The two schools were shuffled back into the same division, the Red Division, based on school size, for the 1999 season. La Salle won the regular-season affair, 21-6, on runs by Chris Dougherty, Ryan Parfitt, and Ben Bailey, but the memories of the 1927 season would rise up in the Red Division Championship game, as Roman stifled the La Salle offense in their win, 21-7. Through 1999, La Salle's overall record against the Cahillites was 18-21-3.
The start of the 21st Century had La Salle dominate the first two years with 44-7 and 34-0 wins, and the 2002 team eked by the Purple and Gold, 17-14 in the regular season, but succumbed in yet another post-season reversal, 9-6. Roman won the next three matchups, including a two-overtime game in 2005, 29-26, and incredibly repeated that result with a two-overtime win in 2006, 27-21. But in 2006, the Explorers would finally avenge the ghosts of 1927, 1999, and 2002 with a 28-7 beat down two weeks later in the Red Division semifinal game, as Jack Forster starred on offense, defense, and special teams. The Cahillites exacted some revenge in 2007 with a 20-3 win on their way to a Red Division PCL Championship, but it was now becoming La Salle's time.
The 2008 squad beat Roman, 42-7, as soph Jamal Abdur-Rahman scored 4 touchdowns. 2009 was worse, 45-7, with two more touchdowns by Abdur-Rahman, two from fullback Tim Wade, and a Drew Loughery pass to Connor Hoffman.
The 2010 and 2011 seasons were an echo of each other, with 2011 being a little close for comfort. The regular season games saw La Salle win, 43-17 and 23-21. with the 2011 game in doubt right till the end, as Dad Poquie intercepted a pass to close out the Cahillite final drive. In both seasons, the schools met for the Quad A PCL championship, and La Salle stood tall both times, 35-16 and 16-6. The 2010 game had the Explorers come back from a 16-7 deficit to win, paced by Abdur-Rahman's 3 touchdowns. The 2011 game featured Matt Magarity's touchdown passes to Colin Buckley and Sean Coleman, and Ryan Winslow's field goal kept the Cahillites at bay.
Similar results in 2012, with a semifinal game instead of a championship game. La Salle won the regular season game, 28-14, as Mike Eife returned an interception for a touchdown, and Jimmy Herron stepped in for injured QB Chris Kane to lead the Explorers to victory. In the semifinal playoff game at William Tennent High School, the Blue and Gold won by the deceiving score of 42-13. The game was 14-13 late in the third quarter when Jimmy Herron threw a center screen pass to Eife, who took it to the house to start the landslide to the final score.
Going into the 2013 season, La Salle's overall record against Roman Catholic is 30 wins, 27 losses, and 3 ties, a lot better than the 7-20-3 mark of 60 years ago!!
Game time is 7 PM on Friday at Northeast High School against the boys from Broad and Vine. Go La Salle!!
In preparation for this week's PCL matchup to most likely determine the #1 seed in the AAAA PCL playoffs between La Salle College High School and St. Joe's Prep, the Sports Information Club and local blog Whiz Wit Sports will partner up to deliver various content throughout the week. Both groups will post game previews, insights on the storied rivalry, and more in preparation for Friday's game, which will be broadcast on The Comcast Network on Friday night live and online at http://csnphilly.com/live1
ABOUT WHIZ WIT SPORTS: Whiz Wit Sports consists of former Explorer alumns Steve Dolan '08, Tristan Tschoepe '08, Mike Higgins '08, and Nick Higgins '13 who was a founding member of the current La Salle Sports Twitter account. Steve, Tristan, and Mike formed Whiz Wit Sports in March of 2011 and have mainly focused on writing for all of the local Philadelphia professional and collegiate teams. In the summer of 2013, the group was named Best Local Blogger on PHL17's 2013 Philly Hotlist.
Read the blog online as well as an article about the rivalry from a St. Joe's Prep point of view at www.whizwitsports.com.
The La Salle College High School Varsity Football game vs Cardinal O'Hara on Friday, September 13th has been voted the NBC 10 High School Blitz "Game of the Week."
A total of 22,365 votes were cast in this week’s poll. The O'Hara/LaSalle game won with 45-percent of the votes. The Timber Creek at Camden Catholic game came close in second with 37-percent and Hammonton at Holy Spirit finished third with 18-percent of the votes.
The "Game of the Week" is chosen exclusively by viewers through online voting. The winning game is announced on the news every Wednesday and the matchup will receive extended post-game coverage on NBC10 News Fridays at 11 p.m. as well as on their brand-new show "NBC10 High School Blitz" which airs on Saturdays at 7 p.m.
My final season as a high school sports reporter for TedSilary.com began in quite dreary fashion. The theme of tonight’s nonleague matchup between La Salle and traditional Public League power Imhotep Charter was “one step forward and two steps back” for the Explorers. Every time La Salle seemed to close the gap during a game in which they never led, the Panthers again pulled away. Imhotep Charter has a great mix of athleticism and discipline, and even amongst a slew of penalties, they maintained a solid team force that simply overpowered La Salle. By the end of tonight’s contest, La Salle was sorely reminded of their mortality amongst other city powers. There were some silver linings for the Explorers and, of course, they will be noted. But, alas, the recapping MUST be done. Shall we proceed?
La Salle owned the game’s first possession, and after a trio of first downs, turned the ball over on the Imhotep 37-yard line. Imhotep took over and proceeded to give the crowd en masse at the Germantown Super Site a tutorial on how to dominate with athleticism. On first down, Panther junior QB Andre Dreuitt completed a pass to star junior WR/K/P DJ Moore. Moore caught the ball one-handed, collected it, and ran 59 yards with the ball. As a sportswriter, you have to call a spade a spade. Moore was beyond impressive all the night, and the fact that he is only a junior made my jaw drop when I realized it. He is a versatile, quick, athletic player that certainly will cause nightmares for days in the minds of La Salle’s coaches. Imhotep scored one play later on a 4-yard touchdown run by junior RB Nasir Bonner. The Panthers converted their 2-point conversion attempt to take an 8-0 lead.
A note here on La Salle’s defense: they definitely felt the loss of senior linebacker Zaire Franklin, who sat out of tonight’s game with some type of injury (his arm was in a cast). Franklin, who has committed to Divison-1 Syracuse for football, was not only a vocal leader of the defense but a ferocious tackler.
After a punt by La Salle on the next drive, Imhotep embarked on a 97-yard drive to the end zone (you can get the feeling of my blood boiling during this madness). The drive was helped by a nice 15 yard run by Imhotep senior Deandre Scott when the Panthers were nearly down-and-out, with 3rd and 10 from their own 3-yard line. Panther sophomore RB Mike Waters capped the brilliant drive with a 17-yard touchdown run. The PAT (not taken by DJ Moore, whose hand was a bit bruised up after his one-handed catch) was blocked by La Salle senior DB Steve Hudak. Hudak, who is committed to Brown University to play lacrosse, is a definite leader on the La Salle defense and he made a number of crucial plays, including a brilliant stop later in the game on a kickoff return that stole a touchdown from Imhotep. Imhotep led 14-0 with 2:46 remaining in the first quarter.
La Salle fans finally saw some action on the Explorers’ next drive. On second down from their 25-yard line, La Salle junior QB Kyle Shurmur connected with senior WR Levi Hardy for a 74-yard touchdown. A quick point on Hardy: he is incredibly quick, which is not surprising, considering that he was part of a national championship track-and-field team that won the Distance-Medley-Relay at the Penn Relays this past April. In tonight’s game, he used his athletic talents to score two touchdowns for the Explorers. Shurmur is also a true athletic specimen—6’4”, 215 lbs. He has an incredible throw and outstanding vision, but he had a tough night tonight with 3 interceptions. After Hardy’s TD, the Explorers cut Imhotep’s lead to 14-7.
After entering the second quarter down seven, La Salle tied the game on a 19-yard touchdown run by junior RB Jordan Meachum. Meachum must have had a boatload of yards in tonight’s game, as he shaped up to be Shurmur’s favorite receiver in the second half. Even though the Explorers could never really get their running game going, Meachum was a force as a wideout for La Salle. It will be a pleasure to see him further develop this year. When La Salle got the ball back, an unfortunate development occurred during a goal-line drive by the Explorers. La Salle tried three times from 1st and Goal at the 5-yard line, but could not find paydirt. On 4th down, Shurmur seemingly crossed the plane, but in the confusion/ruckus of the goal line, Imhotep ended up with the ball. The ensuing result was a touchback (how Imhotep received a touchback on a turnover-on-downs at the goal line is beyond me—if anyone knows the rule about this, please let me know) and Imhotep rattled off another serious drive. Dreuitt tossed a 52-yard touchdown to his favorite target, DJ Moore, and suddenly La Salle went from taking a lead to falling behind the Panthers 20-14 (the PAT was missed).
And it does not improve: on La Salle’s next possession, Shurmur fumbled, Imhotep recovered, and the 12-yard loss associated with the fumble put Imhotep in good field possession for another attempt at the goal line. Dreuitt chose Nasir Bonner for this 35-yard touchdown pass (with under four seconds left in the half) and Imhotep led 26-14 at halftime. Moore and Bonner finished the half with two TDs each.
A plethora of pernicious penalties began the second half. A solid sack of Dreuitt by sophomore Anthony Piscopo and junior Ryan Brady preceded two straight penalties by Imhotep. La Salle senior Bill Frusco then knocked the ball loose on a 3rd and 22, with senior DE Ryan Coonahan recovering the ball. After a series of penalties on the Explorers, Shurmur tossed a beautiful 33-yard pass to Meachum. Now again—here comes the one-step forward and two steps back. After an Imhotep punt, La Salle’s next possession appeared promising. But on 3rd and 22 from the La Salle 38-yard line, a Shurmur pass was deflected by Imhotep senior LB Randell Hunter, who scooped up the pass and returned it for a Panther touchdown. The 34-21 Imhotep lead would last into the fourth quarter.
The Explorers took a solid step forward in the fourth quarter when Levi Hardy collected a 23-yard touchdown pass from Shurmur, reeling it in one-handed in front of Imhotep defenders. The game saw its final score at the 8:36 point in the fourth quarter, in a very telling play. Imhotep had possession on 4th down and 7 from the La Salle 14-yard line, and everyone knew where the ball was going. Even my mother at home knew where the ball was going. All eyes were on DJ Moore and he delivered. To the Explorers’ credit, the defense was obviously prepared for such a play but Moore’s sheer athleticism was difficult to handle. He collected a 26-yard touchdown pass and put his team up 40-28. That score would last us to the end.
It was a tough night for the La Salle Explorers. But only time can tell what type of team these Explorers will shape up to be. It is only the second week of the season. There is time to revise, to develop, and to win. Here’s to the 2013 La Salle Explorers! As we all know, the night is darkest before the dawn!