Outstanding special teams play and 10 sacks by the defense carried the Albright College football team to a 33-19 victory on Saturday, over 2012 NCAA quarterfinalist Widener University in Shirk Stadium.
Redshirt-senior Matt Pattison led the way with four sacks for a total loss of 33 yards. Don Gould had 2.5 sacks and three tackles for loss, while Tyler Hamlet had 2.5 sacks and a game-high 10 tackles.
Senior Sean Cunningham blocked a punt and returned it for a touchdown in the second half. Kicker Daniel Sobolewski was 4-of-5 on field goals with a long of 49 yards, the second-best in school history (he now holds the three top marks). Senior punter TJ Luddy kicked four times for an average of 49.5 yards and a long of 67.
Luddy was pooch punting throughout the game, and had kicks of 55 and then 67 yards in the first quarter. The Pride scored on their first possession, on a nine-yard swing pass to Coute LeFate.
Sobolewski got the Lions on the board with a 49-yarder late in the first quarter, which trails only his own 51-yarder earlier this season in the school record books. Luddy added a 52-yard punt early in the second after Albright's next possession came up empty.
Daniel McNair made his man miss on a comeback route and took it 33 yards to the one-yard line, setting up Ty Hughes' dive over the top. Luddy then hit McNair in the end zone late in the second quarter for a 17-7 lead, despite getting drilled by Kevin Burns on the play.
Widener rallied quickly, kicking a field goal a second before halftime and scoring a touchdown in 58 seconds to start the third quarter. After the Lions flubbed the snap on fourth down, Ryan O'Hara added another field goal for a 19-17 Pride lead.
Devron Clark made an outstanding catch in traffic, setting up a 25-yard Sobolewski kick to put the Lions back on top by a point. The sophomore kicker tacked on three more at the beginning of the fourth quarter, after long Luddy completions to Eric Wade and Vinny Williams.
After getting the ball back, Luddy hit Clark for 34 yards to set up yet another field goal for a 26-19 advantage.
Following a Hamlet sack, Cunningham blocked Michael Bennett's punt, picked it up, and took it all the way back for the final 33-19 scoreline.
Albright's pass rush took over at that point, with the Lions at one point recording three consecutive sacks for a total loss of 32 yards.
Widener freshman QB Seth Klein completed 35-of-44 passes for 350 yards, two TDs and one interception (Drew Peterson's seventh pick of the season). Two-time All-American Anthony Davis caught 14 passes for 99 yards and a score.
Albright improves to 5-3, 4-3 MAC, while Widener is 5-3, 5-2 in an increasingly crowded conference race.