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Last Look: Lehigh vs. Holy Cross

It's not often that I have to lead my "Last Look" blog posting with a scoreboard shot  from my cell phone, but there were no other real good pictures of the game at Fitton Field this weekend from Holy Cross or Lehigh, so I had to settle for my own Plan B.

I've gone away from taking photographs of the games - something I used to do - but I forgot that sometimes, at away games, it's crucial.  I didn't even bring a camera to Fitton this weekend - all I had was my phone that was decidedly not very smart.

Fortunately, when it came to print recaps this weekend, the game was much, much better covered by the Morning Call and the Worcester Telegram-Gazette. (more)

Official Release: Lehigh Downs Holy Cross To Earn Share of Patriot League Title

“When you don’t play your best and you still beat a good football team, that’s the sign of a good football team,” said Lehigh head coach Andy Coen. “Junior QB Chris Lum got better as the game went on. He didn’t have a great start, but after he threw the interception he bounced back and did a heck of a job. His teammates stepped up around him. We didn’t give up a sack today and he used his feet well to make plays.

Coen continued, “Defensively I thought we were in control for most of the day. It was a pretty balanced effort but obviously there were also some mistakes that we need to clean up.”

Groller's Corner: Lehigh beats Holy Cross 34-17, clinches share of Patriot League football title
Easton Express-Times: Lehigh Defeats Holy Cross

"As a coach you're not happy," Coen said, "but then you look and you see you beat a good football team 34-17 despite all those mistakes. So that shows what our kids are capable of. We've got to clean some things up, but I'm very, very happy for our guys getting this win."

"To put it in context, over a five-year period there's only one team that has won two championships and that's us," Coen said, noting Lehigh's co-championship with Lafayette in 2006. "We want to finish our business here and we've got to beat an improved Georgetown team next week, and they're coming off a bye. I feel good about things, but we just can't settle for this."

"I give a lot of credit to the entire offense; it's not just me," Lum said. "The OL didn't allow a sack today and the receivers keep making plays and get yards after the catch.

"Our 2-minute offense we did well. "No big shots, just 5 yards here, 10 yards here. Just moved the ball. That touchdown was huge for us. We got some momentum going into halftime and Wojdo made a great play for the touchdown.

"We were upset about not scoring as much as we could have today. We could have put up more points. We're happy with the win, but we're a hungry team and we know we can be even better and we'll go right to work on Georgetown."

"It was nice to get the MVP award from this game. I don't think a Lehigh player has won it in awhile."

Brown & White: Football One Win From Patriot League Title

"It was a good win against the defending champs who had a 13 game home win streak so we knew it would be tough," Head Coach Andy Coen said. "I don't think we executed all that well early on offensively, but after the interception we settled down a bit and Lum played really well. The defense was stout all day and didn't allow any big plays. I thought the score before half was really big for us and when Holy Cross had some life we really took it to them, especially in the fourth quarter. We are a resilient team and a team that really picks each other up, so we knew we could play better and we settled down and did."

"It felt great to get that first touchdown but a lot of credit needs to be given to the linemen up front for giving [Lum] a lot of time to let the play develop," senior WR Craig "Braveheart" Zurn said, "Senior WR Jake Drwal did a great job getting the corner out of the way and [Lum] threw a terrific ball, so it was an all around team effort.

"It felt great to get that first touchdown but a lot of credit needs to be given to the linemen up front for giving [Lum] a lot of time to let the play develop. Jake Drwal did a great job getting the corner out of the way and [Lum] threw a terrific ball, so it was an all around team effort.

"It was a great win for us today but we haven't accomplished our goal yet. To beat a team for the first time in four years, as well as the defending champion, is a great feeling but our goal is to be outright champions and make a run in playoffs. Therefore, all attention turns to Georgetown tomorrow after film because they are the next opponent in the way of our goal.

"It would mean a lot for this team to win the Patriot League title outright because of all of the hard work and dedication we have put into this team," Zurn said. "It would be an amazing accomplishment for all of the seniors on this team who have battled through all of the adversity and close loses throughout the past four years and never gave up but rather continued to work harder to become champions."

"We have a great group of seniors," Coen said, "That's what makes this team special. They want to win a championship badly and have worked very hard to get there. We don't want to settle, so next week is very important. We need to keep focused and be prepared for Georgetown. We cannot afford to take anything for granted. I know we are very excited to play for the championship this coming week."

(Ed. note: Great stuff, Brown & White.)

Morning Call: Lehigh Clicking on Offense and Defense

Maybe Lehigh alums and fans didn't expect it.

Maybe media members covering the team didn't expect it.

And it's quite possible that some team members didn't expect it.

But one guy who did expect Lehigh's football team to have the success it's having this fall is Holy Cross coach Tom Gilmore.

"You can't pick yourself when you do the preseason poll, so we picked Lehigh," Gilmore said Saturday after his Crusaders fell to the Mountain Hawks 34-17 in Worcester, Mass.

"I could tell that the underlying philosophy of the old Lehigh offense is there," Gilmore said. "It's a multiple offense and a lot of the things they're doing is what they've always done, while mixing in new concepts. Andy [Coen, Lehigh's head coach] and Dave [Cecchini, the offensive coordinator] know that offense so well.

"I heard all about what is known as the Lehigh offense even before I got to Lehigh. They're playing well and they're well-coached and they just won a very big game."

"We can't complain with the result and 34 points and a win isn't something to complain about, but we can definitely play a lot sharper," said sophomore WR Ryan Spadola. "We did leave some plays out there, but that's a very good secondary and we had to work out butts off to get open. As receivers, once we get the ball in our heads, we can make plays.

"Going back to the second half of the Harvard game, we know now that even when bad things happen we just have to maintain focus and we can be a dangerous team. We know how to keep our heads high even bad things happen. We just move on to the next play and put the bad ones behind us."

Worcester Telegram-Gazette: Crusaders Can't Connect vs. Mountain Hawks

“Lehigh's the class of the league, and they've gotten better as the season's gone on,” said Gilmore, the former Lehigh defensive coordinator. “Our kids are going out and playing hard, we're just not making good decisions at times. It's putting us in a hole, and obviously against a good team, we couldn't recover.”

“We started off slow, and we weren't making the big plays when we needed to,” WR/KR Freddie Santana said, “and you can't do that against a team like Lehigh.”

“If they don't score right before halftime,” coach Tom Gilmore said, “it's a totally different game. We have a totally blown assignment. Senior TE Alex "Wojdo" Wojdowski is the only guy that was open. The play was over, the half was over.”


Anonymous said…
Looks like Lehigh was the last team out of the Top 25 for both the TSN and Coaches poll.

With a win this weekend hopefully Lehigh can crack that top 25. It has been a long time since the Hawks found themselves there.
Anonymous said…
What happened to all the Coen must go crowd, Notice that Elon is not even ranked or received a vote
Anonymous said…
I'm noticing that when things are good...there are fewer comments on these posts. I'm sure the complainers are unhappy because they have nothing to complain about right now.
van said…
some one ahead in the poll will have to lose for us to move up. Could happen this week, but more likely in week 12. Of course we have to win too.
mailman said…
I said 9-2 was possible back in late summer.Was right after one of those Andy must go post.Lets hope the guys keep getting better and get that 9 win season.
LUHawker said…
I think many of the Andy must go comments were also appended to comments that Trey Brown needed to go. Cecchini is in and Brown is out and the offense has come together nicely. As such, Sterrett and Coen made the right decision on the OC and Coen and the OC made the right decision on the QB.
van said…
Agree with Hawker.

I thought 7-4 would be our record, expected a loss to Harvard and one league loss to someone.

Was wrong on Harvard, hope I am also wrong on the league loss.
Anonymous said…
Coen must go!

There, I said it. Are we happy?

At least some of those Andy must go comments were from people who were venting.

Let's not get carried away with the rankings. Lehigh hasn't beaten any good teams yet. They've only had one win over a decent opponent and that opponent was badly banged up.

Regardless, the offense has made great strides since Lum returned and Spadola broke out, and Barket looks like a solid back (don't know why he doesn't play more). The first round of the playoffs should be fun.
Anonymous said…
And where were the Andy Coen lovers the previous 4 years of pure garbage? This is a stupid game to play. Right up there with "You never played the game so how dare you criticise."
Anonymous said…
well there's still one stupid ass commenting about how we haven't beaten any good teams yet. Anyway suck it buddy ha!
van said…
Well, I would not call myself a lover, but I certainly believed that Andy should not have been the scapegoat for the past few seasons. And I commented as such over the past few seasons (not as anonymous either).

Now the former OC, that was a different story.

This team is winning the close games that they found a way to lose in the past few years. Some of that is coaching, some is confidence and some is perhaps talent. There are some that say it is just believe the PL is just not that good this year. We can judge that better on 11/27.
Anonymous said…
yes, LU will win the patriot but the league is no more then a mid-major. Colgate hammered by Furman, HC by Umass and LU Villanova and New Hampshire. No quality wins by the PL. Robert Morris #25!! Redemption will come for Pl when LU wins 1st playoff game.
Anonymous said…
So you're saying we will win the first playoff game? If so, God bless you, you can ride the bus with us
ngineer said…
No need for a bus. If we win convincingly the next two weeks, I think we have a shot at a home game on 11/27. I would hope we'd make a bid for it.
This team has made strong improvement, especially on offense, the past five and a half weeks. Ever since the second half of Harvard, they now believe in themselves. They expect to win and are focused to justify the expectations. This is an experienced bunch and many of us were expecting nothing less than 7-4, with 9-2 a realistic possibility that was laughed at on several Boards.
Anonymous said…
you go ngineer almost time to celebrate for real brother!
Anonymous said…
The word from my son ! The Team is Locked in on G Town ! They all how big this weekend is ! Lehigh will be ready !
Anonymous said…
Early prediction from out in the Great West for this weekend:
LU 41 GT 10

Sierra Sam

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