Written by Staff Reports
Saturday, 12 November 2011 23:51
The Lenoir-Rhyne Football Team (7-3, 6-1) claimed a share of its first South Atlantic Conference Championship since 1994 with a 38-6 victory over Catawba (3-8, 2-5) Saturday afternoon in the regular season finale at Shuford Stadium.
L-R, which also won its fourth straight game, shares the title
this year with Mars Hill (8-2, 6-1). The Lions defeated the Eagles of Carson-Newman by a 23-20 score at home Saturday afternoon as well.
Senior quarterback Major Herron (Kingsland, Ga.) led the way with a career-high 182 yards rushing and a score as the Bears rolled up 348 yards on the ground and defeated the Indians for the third straight year.
Herron's one-yard touchdown run opened the scoring and capped a six-play, 70-yard drive late in the first quarter and Lenoir-Rhyne would never trail in the contest.
The Bears pushed their advantage to 14-0 on redshirt freshman fullback Isaiah Whitaker's (Salisbury, N.C.) four-yard scoring run early in the second quarter before the Indians got on the board after a fumbled snap on a Lenoir-Rhyne punt attempt later in the period.
The play set up the Indians at the Bears' 10-yard line and Catawba quarterback Jacob Charest (Charlotte, N.C.) snuck it in from one-yard out on fourth down. The touchdown cut the deficit to 14-6 but Indians would stay off the board the rest of the way.
Lenoir-Rhyne took back control when sophomore halfback Corron Boston (Durham, N.C.) scored from five yards out to increase the lead to 21-6 just before halftime. The score was set up by sophomore Michael Green's (Kingsland, Ga.) 35-yard punt return.
L-R then broke the game open when senior Jamont Jones (Washington, N.C.) returned the opening kickoff of the second half 93 yards for a touchdown.
Senior placekicker Colin Corpe (Ocala, Fla.) and senior halfback Jasper Thomas (High Point, N.C.) rounded out the scoring for the Bears with a 34-yard field goal and a one-yard touchdown run, respectively. The field goal was Corpe's single-season school record 14th of the year.
Whitaker added 87 yards rushing and one score while the L-R defense limited Catawba to just 130 yards of total offense led by Jones and senior defensive back Richard Walker's (Loganville, Ga.) seven tackles each.
Lenoir-Rhyne, ranked eighth in this week's Southeast Region Poll, will wait to see if it earns a berth to the NCAA Division II National Playoffs. The tournament field will be announced on Sunday at 5 p.m.