Louisville Unable to Catch Lake After Slow Start 37-27 – Varsity Football
Lake 37, Louisville 27
The Louisville Leopards Varsity Football Team fell to the host Lake Blue Streaks 37-27 Friday Night at Blue Streak Stadium. With the loss, Louisville falls to 2-2 on the season.
Senior Runningback Nathan Guiley ran the ball 21 times for 146 yards and scored 3 second half touchdowns to lead the Leopards offense that racked up 469 yards of total offense. Senior Quarterback Colton Jones was 24 of 37 passing for 288 yards. He also threw a 12 yard touchdown pass to Senior Wide Receiver Ryan Pukys to get Louisville within 31-27 of Lake with 2:51 to play. Pukys would finish as the Leopards top receiver with 8 catches for 107 yards.
Owens and Garro Lead Lake Rushing Attack
Louisville tried a trick onside kick that sailed out of bounds on the ensuing kickoff after the Pukys touchdown. Lake turned to Senior Runningback Vincent Garro on all 4 plays of their 57 yard scoring drive that put the game away. Garro ripped off a 44 yard run on the play before he scored the game clinching touchdown from 2 yards out with 48 seconds left to give the Blue Streaks a double digits 37-27 cushion.
Garro finished as Lake’s second leading rusher with 12 carries for 129 yards and 2 touchdowns. Junior Runningback Dréden Owens carried most of the Blue Streaks load before dazzling the crowd with a 57 yard touchdown run in which he broke 7 tackles on his way to pay dirt. The tackle he didn’t break landed him hard into the endzone and he did not return. Owens rushed the ball 24 times for 298 yards and scored 3 touchdowns on the ground in less than three quarters of action. He scored on runs of 1, 82, and that last 57 yard rip that put the Blue Streaks up 24-14 with 3:21 left to play in the third quarter. Lake would finish with 42 carries for 452 yards rushing as a team.
Louisville Overcomes Multiple Setbacks in Comeback Attempt
Louisville answered with a 15 play, 78 yard scoring drive in which they overcame multiple setbacks. The Leopards overcame a holding penalty in the middle of the drive when Jones found Senior Wide Receiver Davis Burick on a curl route to the right that converted a 4th-and-6. The Blue Streaks defense stormed into the backfield for a 6 yard loss on the next play. But Louisville overcame that as well with a pair of Jones to Sophomore Runningback Connor Adelman connections that netted 25 yards. An offensive pass interference set the Leopards back into a 1st-and 25. Jones found Burick for a 13 yard reception and then a late hit on Lake drew a personal foul on the next play to move the ball to the 7 yard line. Big blocks by Tony Brahler, Jason Goard, and Austin Griggy made room for Guiley who dragged and spun multiple Blue Streak defenders into the endzone to cut the deficit to 24-20. The extra point snap was bobbled and a conversion pass fell incomplete leaving it a two score game with 10:45 left in the fourth quarter.
Even with their star Runningback out, that did not stop Lake from going to the ground with Garro and fellow Senior Runningback Sean Michael-James. Garro carried the ball three times for 16 yards and a Blue Streak first down. Then gave way to Michael-James for 3 straight carries which included a 10 yard gain on a 3rd-and-5. Lake went back to Garro on a 3rd-and-14 and he rolled ahead for a gain of 27 to the Louisville 5. Garro ran into the endzone on he next play, but a holding call brought it back out to the 15. Garro ran left again on the next play and scored to give the Blue Streaks their largest lead of the game at 31-20 with 7:07 to play.
Overcoming adversity was again the name of the game in the Leopards next drive that started from their own 13. Jones was sacked for the first time all season on the next play dropping Louisville back to their own 6 yard line. But the Leopards crawled out of the hole when Jones hit Beamer for a 9 yard gain and then Pukys for 19 yards on a 3rd-and-8. In the next series, Burick ran ahead to to just barely move the sticks on a 4th-and-1. Then Burick extended on a 3rd-and-10 reception to move the chains again in the series after that.
On the next play, Jones found Pukys over the middle for a 28 yard gain to the Blue Streak 17. An illegal hands to the face penalty set them back 15 yards and then Lake stuffed a sweep in the backfield for a loss of 7 to setup a 2nd-and-33. Jones threaded the needle on a pass over the middle to Burick who pushed through the defense for a 28 yard completion to the 12 yard line. Facing 3rd-and-10, Jones hit Pukys over the middle who made a shifty move to break a tackle and reach the endzone. Louisville elected to kick the extra point instead of going for two leaving the score at 31-27 with 2:51 left. That would be as close as the Leopards would get.
Points Come at a Premium in the 1st Half
Despite a 61-point explosion by the two LHS squads in the second half, the first half only featured one score as both teams struggled to finish off drives. Louisville was aggressive out of the gate going for it on 4th-and-11 from their own 44. The play call was sound, but the ball fell incomplete down the left sideline off the outstretched hands of the Leopard receiver.
The Blue Streaks took advantage of the short field to produce the only points of the first half. They started their drive with a 9 yard completion from Junior Quarterback Jacob Eckels to Senior Wide Receiver Logan Fedor. Lake followed that up with 7 straight running plays including a 14 yard run by Owens on 3rd-and-5. The Louisville defense would hold on a misdirection run to Garro on 3rd-and-goal forcing a field goal attempt. Sophomore Kick Chase Abdul booted home the 20 yard attempt to give the Blue Streaks the first points of the contest.
The Leopards a pair of promising drives in the first half that looked to get them on the board while the defense was holding Lake out of the endzone. After back-to-back punts, Louisville started from their own 13 yard line and drove 85 yards on a 12 play drive. Early on in the drive, Jones completed a pass to Burick that netted 25 yards. Burick’s helmet also came popping off and Lake was charged with a 15 yard personal foul as a result. The play netted 40 yards for the Leopards to the Blue Streak 35. Burick converted a 3rd-and-4 on the ground for 7 yards in the next series and Adelman moved the chains again with a 13 yard burst to set Louisville up 1st-and-Goal from the 8. The Leopards got as close as the 1 yard line but were unable to punch it home. On 4th-and-Goal, Jones pass to Burick in the back of the endzone was deflected away by Lake Junior Defensive Back Jared Perko.
Perko came up big again for the Blue Streaks defense late in the half. The Leopards received some of their best field position of the night after a shanked punt went out of bounds at the Louisville 46. A pair of 13 yard first down completions by Jones to Beamer and Pukys had the Leopards in business on the Lake 26 yard line with under two minutes to play before halftime. Jones rolled left on the next play looking for Rode near the goal line. Perko extended to intercept the would be touchdown at the 6 yard line to preserve the Blue Streaks 3-0 lead going into the locker room.
While the two teams moved the ball well in the first half the endzones remained unscathed. All that changed in the third quarter, but not before the Louisville defense made one last stop to start the third quarter. The Leopards defense forced a Blue Streaks three-and-out forcing a punt. But Louisville muffed the punt and the coach’s son Junior Drew DeGeorge pounced on it at the Leopard 29 yard line.
That turnover proved to be the turning point in the game as both offenses shifted into overdrive the rest of the way. The next nine possessions ended in touchdowns as a 3-0 contest at halftime escalated into a shootout. Lake ran the ball 4 times and scored on a 1 yard run by Owens to go ahead 10-0. Louisville quickly answered when Senior Justin Broad returned the ensuing kickoff 47 yards to the Blue Streaks 38. Six plays later, the Leopards were on the board on a 4 yard touchdown run by Guiley.
Guiley ran in another touchdown from 5 yards out later on in the third quarter as well. Both of his scores were quickly countered by a pair of 1 play Lake touchdown drives. Owens broke free for an 82 yard touchdown run to make it 17-7 and then again on his unforgettable 57 yard touchdown carry that put the Blue Streaks ahead 24-14 near the end of the third. The two teams continued trading touchdowns throughout the fourth quarter, but Louisville was unable to overcome the 10 points they spotted Lake to start the game.
With the loss, the Blue Streaks have now won 6 of their last 8 meetings with the Leopards overall. Lake leads the all-time series 9-4 which includes a 3-1 edge in games played at Lake.The Leopards still have not won at Lake since October 20, 1989 when Louisville rallied to beat the Blue Steaks 12-6 in double overtime.
UP NEXT: The Leopards will next host the Perry Panthers on Friday, September 27 at 7:00 PM. The Freshman will be playing in a rare Frosh night game at Perry on Thursday, September 26 at 7:00 PM and the JV will round out the weekend by traveling to face the Panthers on Saturday, September 28 at 10:00. JV wlll also host the Lake Blue Streaks on Saturday, September 21 at 10:00 AM.
BLUE STREAKS 37, LEOPARDS 27
La 5:23 Chase Abduhl 20 yd. Field Goal
9 plays 44 yds
La 8:11 Dreden Owens 1 yd run
Chase Abduhl PAT
5 plays 29 yds
Lo 6:22 Nathan Guiley 4 yd run
Myles Lab PAT
6 plays 38 yds
La 5:58 Dreden Owens 82 yd run
Chase Abduhl PAT
1 play 82 yds
Lo 3:42 Nathan Guiley 5 yd run
Myles Lab PAT
6 plays 48 yds
La 3:21 Dreden Owens 57 yd run
Chase Abduhl PAT
1 play 57 yds
Lo 10:45 Nathan Guiley 7 yd run
15 plays 78 yds
La 7:07 Vincent Garro 15 yd run
Chase Abduhl PAT
9 plays 59 yds
Lo 2:51 Ryan Pukys 12 yd pass from Colton Jones
Myles Lab PAT
15 plays 87 yds
La 0:48 Vincent Garro 2 yd run
4 plays 57 yds
Records: Lake 4-0, Louisville 2-2
Louisville: 24/37/1 288 yds
Lake: 4/12/0 24 yds
3rd Down Conversions:
4th Down Conversions:
Louisville: Nathan Guiley: 21/146 3TD’s
Connor Adelman: 12/33
Lake: Dreden Owens: 24/298 3 TD’s
Vincent Garro: 12/129 2 TD’s
Louisville: Ryan Pukys: 8/107 1TD
Davis Burick: 6/91
Lake: Bryce Snow: 1/13
Louisville: Colton Jones: 24/37/1 288 yds 1 TD
Lake: Jake Eckels: 4/12/0 24 yds