A difficult away game proves to be cure for preconference jitters

THE PIONEERS started their season with a 35-3 loss at Zinda Field this past Saturday. An early field goal was Lewis & Clark’s only scoring effort against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Stags. The 19-yard attempt was scored by first year place kicker J. Hendrickson, whose first career points came shortly following CMS’s opening drive.

CMS’ running back Andre Segre capped off the Stags’ 70-yard drive with a rushing touchdown of two yards. The Pios answered this scoring drive with a 65-yard drive of their own, but were forced to kick at the two-yard line after quarterback Niko Fortino’s ’17 pass to Dejour Williams ’19 was incomplete.

Fortino, who was 12-27 on the day, garnered a total of 145 passing yards, completed no TDs and threw one interception. The interception was thrown in the second quarter and led to CMS’ third touchdown of the evening. Andrew Scott scored the CMS Touchdown on a 15-yard yard pass from Trey Reynolds. Going into the break, the Pios trailed 28-3.

Besides one promising 44-yard drive at the beginning of the second half, the Pios’ offense was unable to generate much momentum. The drive was spearheaded by the efforts of Fortino, who completed three passes including two to Carl Appleton as well as rushed for a twelve yard gain. The drive ended, however, in CMS territory, when running back Eric Hawkins ’18 was stopped on a 3rd-and-1 by Mitchell Allan and the Pios were forced to punt. Keeping drives alive was a problem for the Pios who were only 5 for 14 on third down conversions. In addition to the one interception, the Pios turned the ball over twice on downs.

Defensively, LC’s lineman, Andrew Werst ’19, put forth an outstanding individual effort, collecting 10 tackles and one sack. His performance lead him to be named one of two Pioneers of the Week. The sophomore, who was injured for most of last season, said “It was a blessing to have the opportunity to play well”, and credited his coaches for giving him the technique to perform well. Werst saw many positives to take out of the season opener.

“The game against Claremont just proved that it’s nothing the other team does to us. It shows that as we perfect each and every one of our positions on the field, the team will find success.” According to Werst, “the jitters are gone,” and the Pios are ready to compete in their first home game against Pomona-Pitzer on Saturday, September 17.

 

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