SAGINAW, MICH. – Aided by a pair of fumbles, host Saginaw Valley State University scored on its first four possessions en route to a 49-17 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) victory over the Lake Erie College football team on Saturday afternoon (Sept. 18) at H.R. Wickes Memorial Stadium.
The Cardinals (1-2, 1-1 GLIAC) led 28-0 early in the second quarter, thanks to a couple of big plays on offense and two Lake Erie (0-3, 0-2 GLIAC) turnovers that set up a short field.
The Storm got a field goal from sophomore Sam Marcotte (Chardon, Ohio/Chardon) and two late touchdown runs for its scoring. However, by the time junior Patrick Lunney (Mount Shasta, Calif./Mount Shasta/College of Siskiyous) scampered in from 15-yards out for Lake Erie's first touchdown, the Cardinals had built a 42-3 edge.
Charles Dowdell threw four touchdown passes and ran for another score to lead SVSU. He tossed scoring throws of 22, 27, 33 and 31-yards to four different receivers and finished 14-of-22 for 232 yards. He also rushed for a game-high 64 yards, including a three-yard TD run.
After the Storm went three-and-out on its opening possession, SVSU went 63 yards in seven plays, the final 22 on a pass from Dowdell to Nick Gallina for a 7-0 lead. Lake Erie fumbled on the ensuing possession and six plays later, Dowdell ran it in for a 14-0 score.
Another three-and-out was followed by 12-play, 71-yard drive that was capped by a 27-yard pass from Dowdell to Mike Albrecht on a fourth-and-five play. Ronnie Lark added a 10-yard run followed another Storm fumble and made it 28-0. Marcotte's 19-yard kick put the Storm on the board at the end of the first half.
Dowdell threw two more TD's in the first four minutes of the second half while back-up quarterback John Jennings threw a 22-yard touchdown to Albrecht for the Cardinals final points.
Freshman Chris Brown (Cincinnati, Ohio/Princeton) rushed for a team-high 43 yards on 10 carries and scored on a late one-yard run. Lunney had 36 yards on five carries and scored the Storm's first rushing TD of the season.
Junior Sean Bedevelsky (Brunswick, Ohio/Brunswick) completed 13-of-18 passes for 138 yards, but turned the ball over three times on an interception and two fumbles. David Romeo (Eastlake, Ohio/Eastlake North) caught five passes for 46 yards to lead the receiving corps. Lunney added two catches for 56 yards.
Saginaw Valley State held a 444-284 edge in total yardage, limiting Lake Erie to just 89 in the first half. The Storm, which entered the game with a minus-six turnover margin through the first two games, committed four more against the Cardinals. The Lake Erie defense, however, did record an interception and recover a fumble – the first two caused turnovers of the season.
Junior Gus Armbruster (North Royalton, Ohio/North Royalton) had a game-high 13 tackles and redshirt freshman John Fioritto (Newbury, Ohio/Notre Dame Cathedral Latin) had a career-high seven tackles and recorded the first INT of his career.
Rick Evans had both Cardinal interceptions while Ryan Busch and Josh Fallon shared team honors with seven tackles.
The Storm will look to pick up its first win of the season next Saturday, Sept. 25, at nationally-ranked Hillsdale College. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.