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football1It was a wet, chilly night as the Bobcats took on the Panthers last Friday night.  They had a chance to improved their record to 4 and 3 or let it drop to 3 and 4.  After the initial kickoff return of 34 yards by Gino Leonardi of Spencer- VanEtten (S-VE), Lansing's defense declawed the panthers and didn't allow them to score at all in the first quarter.  For the Bobcats first drive of the game Ryan Todd rushed for over 30 hard gained yards in five carries.  This set the tone of the game and set up Greg Lehr for a sweet 26 yard TD.  Todd tacked on two more point with conversion run up the middle.  Score, 8-0, Lansing.

In the Second quarter Lansing's defense was keeping S-VE from advancing the ball until Kyle Pierce of S-VE jettisoned the ball to a wide open Shawn Katuri for a 46 yard TD.  The Bobcats defense regained its footing and held solid, preventing the Panthers from making the two point conversion and tying the game.  A 19 yard kickoff return by Andrew Zarate set up the pattern of, a lot of Todd pounding the ball up the middle with just enough Lehr and Tyler Winslow to keep the Panther defense off balance and give Todd a rest.  A botched run play was quickly turned into a 4 yard pass by Mason Carrican who would complete 7 of 9 pass attempts for 69 yards on the night.   Todd then punched the ball in for a 1 yard TD and Dennis Britton tacked on one more point with a good PAT kick.  Score, 15-6, Lansing.

The third quarter turned into a battle of the defenses.  Neither of the teams could move the ball very well.  The Panthers defense ended up scoring a safety after a botched punt attempt.  This brought S-VE into range of winning with one score.  The Bobcats defense forced yet another punt holding S-VE to only 2 points this quarter.  Score, 15-8, Lansing.

The Panthers put their number 21, Ivan Bower in to run the ball.  He chewed up the field in short gains which was enough to get him into the end zone, tipping the score close to even.  With just over eight minutes left in the game the Panthers had a choice to make.  Kick the PAT and tie the game or go for the two point conversion and take the lead.  They chose to go for two.  The Bobcats had to hold their ground and keep the Panthers from taking the lead.  Pierce dropped back, “PASS, BALL” was yelled from the Bobcats sideline, letting the corner backs know that it was a pass play and that the ball was in the air.   Time seemed to slow down as the ball headed straight for an open receiver’s out stretched arms.  Pierce's pass was knocked out of the receivers hands by one hand belonging to Conner Lapressi.  The score was, Lansing - 15, S-VE - 14. Lansing still had the lead, it was small but, it was still a lead. 

Eight minutes seems like forever when you need it to expire.  Lansing did its best to keep the ball in bounds and gain first downs.  The offensive line did a great job making holes and the QB kept calm and controlled.  Todd and Winslow drove down the field with a purpose; Todd running through and over people like fire devouring a parched, August field, Winslow, seeming to flow around and bounce off defenders more like a river in the rapids.  Todd's last rush of the night was an 11 yard gain and a first down on the Panthers 13 yard line.  The drive was not enough to score again but, it was enough to take seven minutes and 42 seconds off the clock.  With only 24 ticks left on clock, Coach Winslow, respectful of the Panthers abilities, had his QB take a knee and end the game.  Score, 15-14, Lansing.

Todd finished the game with 167 yards on 30 carries and Winslow ended with 49 yards on 5 carries.  Lehr had an outstanding game with 50 rushing yards on 5 carries, 22 yards on 3 receptions, 1 solo tackle and 5 assisted tackles.  Ben Rourke was a huge part of the Bobcats defense, finishing with 4 solo tackles and 5 assisted tackles.  Austin Candea, JD McKane, and Anders Presthus all ended with more than six tackles a piece.  McKane also had an interception to cap off his night.   Both the defensive an offensive lines did their jobs well and should be commended.

Stop down to see the Bobcats take on Waverly tonight at Lansing's homecoming game.  There will be a senior recognition ceremony prior to the start of the game, raffles for two autographed footballs, one signed by the Cornell Big Red team and one signed by the Ithaca Bombers.  There will also be a dunk booth with local Lansing celebrities raising funds for the Class of 2014.  Kickoff is at 7:00 pm.

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