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West Liberty Blows Out Storm

September 14, 2009

The Lake Erie football team tried to hang with West Liberty for a half but the high-powered Hilltoppers hung the Storm out to dry with a blizzard of third-quarter points in a 62-28 blowout Saturday afternoon at Russek Field.

      Junior quarterback Zach Amedro fired two of his career-high six touchdown passes in a span of just 22 seconds to light the fuse and the high-powered West Liberty offense exploded for 28 unanswered third-quarter points to take an insurmountable 59-21 lead into the final quarter.Kevon_to_the_house

      “We have a lot of playmakers on offense,” coach Roger Waialae said. “We can put some quick scores on the board.”

      To the friends and fans who packed the stands for the 14th annual Alumni Scholarship Bowl, that may be a bit of an understatement.

      Before closing out the third quarter with an 11-play, 55-yard scoring march that chewed 3:52 off the clock, none of West Liberty’s first 7 touchdown drives had required more than 5 plays or lasted longer than 2 minutes. The average TD drive covered 59 yards in 52 seconds on less than 3 snaps.

      Amedro completed 24-of-36 passes for 397 yards and the 6 TDs. Kashif Walls led all receivers with 7 catches for 196 yards and 3 TDs while Kevon Calhoun had 157 rushing yards and a touchdown on 12 carries to go along with a 62-yard receiving touchdown. Ryan Travis had 8 catches for 90 yards and 2 TDs while senior standout Eddie Hills added 7 grabs for 73 yards and another score.

      The fireworks started quickly as Amedro found Walls on a 53-yard scoring bomb on the second snap of the game. An 8-yard TD toss to Travis and a 50-yard touchdown gallop by Calhoun sent the hosts into the second quarter with a 21-0 lead.

      But Lake Erie (1-2), which was coming off a victory against Fairmont State a week ago, got its offense going in the second quarter when Sean Bedevelsky lobbed a 66-yard touchdown pass to Dave Romeo. West Liberty struck right back with a 39-yard TD pass from Amedro to Walls but the Storm trimmed the gap to 28-21 with just 45 seconds left in the half on back-to-back touchdown runs of 47 and 10 yards by Andre Wells.

      That turned out to be plenty of time for Amedro and Walls. When Walls outleaped two Lake Erie defenders for a 47-yard catch at the Storm 12, it capped a blurry-fast 75-yard march and set up a 29-yard Mike Blewett field goal to push the lead to 31-21 on the final play of the half.

      “I thought driving for that field goal at the end of the half was the turning point of the game,” Waialae said. “They had just got back within a score and were getting some momentum. But we got that field goal to go back up by 10 points and then got those two quick touchdowns in the third quarter to put things out of reach.”

      After Amedro capped the opening drive of the second half with a 21-yard TD pass to Hills with 12:56 on the third quarter clock, Blewett recovered the kickoff after it caromed off the shins of a Lake Erie blocker. Two snaps later, Calhoun took a middle screen from Amedro and split the Storm secondary.

      Calhoun’s 62-yard scoring play came at the 12:34 mark but the Hilltoppers weren’t finished. After a defensive stop, freshman wide receiver Adam Hill hurled a 47-yard TD strike to Walls for a 52-21 West Liberty lead. The Hilltoppers closed out the third quarter scoring and put the game on ice with a 12-yard TD pass from Amedro to Travis at the 2-minute mark.

      Despite allowing more than 440 yards of total offense, the Hilltopper defense came up big when needed. West Liberty forced the Storm into 6 turnovers – 3 fumble recoveries and 3 interceptions – while charting 3 quarterback sacks and 11 tackles-for-loss. 

      “Our best defensive teams have had a knack for creating turnovers so I was very pleased with that,” Waialae said. “I thought we were dominant on defense at the start of the game, gave up some big plays in the second quarter to open the door a little bit and then really shut things down in the third quarter to put things away.”

      West Liberty opens the West Virginia Conference portion of its schedule on the road next weekend with a 1 p.m. Saturday game at West Virginia Wesleyan.

Game Notes

  • Bill Flanagan, the umpire on the game officiating crew, worked his final college game on Saturday. The veteran Wheeling-area official spent 16 years as a WVIAC official and also had 8 years in the Mid-American Conference.
  • The newest members of the West Liberty Athletic Hall of Fame – Ashlea Bland-Minch, Kelly West, E.J. Burt, Greg Dailer and Brian Edison – were introduced to the crowd at halftime and presented with their commemorative plaques by University President Robin Capehart.
  • Senior cornerback Derrick Evans had 5 pass break-ups to tie the school record set by Bryan Culley against West Virginia Wesleyan on Nov. 30, 1990. Evans also picked off his second pass of the season.

West Liberty 62, Lake Erie 28

Lake Erie 0  21  0  7 – 28

West Liberty 21  10 28  3 – 62

First Quarter

      WL: Walls 53 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 13:59

      WL: Travis 8 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 8:33

      WL: Calhoun 50 run (Blewett kick), 1:25

Second Quarter

      LE: Romeo 66 pass from Bedevelsky (Marcotte kick), 10:16

      WL: Walls 39 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 9:53

      LE: Wells 47 run (Marcotte kick), 4:08

      LE: Wells 10 run (Marcotte kick), :45

      WL: FG Blewett 29, :00

Third Quarter

      WL: Hills 21 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 12:56

      WL: Calhoun 62 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 12:34

      WL: Walls 47 pass from Hill (Blewett kick), 10:24

      WL: Travis 12 pass from Amedro (Blewett kick), 2:00

Fourth Quarter

      WL: FG Blewett 35, 11:02

      LE: Covington 33 run (Marcotte kick), 3:01

A: 2,145

Game Statistics

      RUSHING: Lake Erie 46-197, Wells 4-61, Covington 5-46, Howard 15-36, Smith 4-23, Alexander 4-16, Romeo 3-6, Yeager 1-4, Gray 1-4,  Krumpak 2-3, Bedevelsky 7-(-2). West Liberty 27-193, Calhoun 12-157, Gordon 2-13, Hills 3-11, Bell 1-9, Burress 6-6, Amedro 3-(-3).

      PASSING: Lake Erie 17-37-250-1td-3x, Bedevelsky 15-29-225-1td-3x, Krumpak 2-8-25-0-0. West Liberty, 25-40-444-7td-1x, Amedro 24-36-397-6td-1x, Worek 0-3-0-0-0, Hill 1-1-47-1td-0x

      RECEIVING: Lake Erie 17-250, Gray 4-34, Romeo 3-93, Yeager 3-20, James 2-44, Alexander 2-18, Evans 1-16. Krzys 1-15, Wells 1-10. West Liberty 25-444, Walls 7-196, Travis 8-90, Hills 7-73, Calhoun 1-62, Walker 1-13, McDaniel 1-10.

      First downs: Lake Erie 19, West Liberty 22

      Fumbles: Lake Erie 4-3, West Liberty 1-0

      Penalties: Lake Erie 7-61, West Liberty 8-99

      Time of Possession: Lake Erie 33:44, West Liberty 26:16

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