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Warriors hit road again today against Stevenson

Lycoming football will once again hit the road for a second straight conference game at Stevenson University today. The Warriors (2-1) have lost the past five games against the Mustangs (0-3) and face tough matchups this time around as well.

Stevenson may not have gotten in the win column yet this season, but the Mustangs have endured a difficult strength of schedule to start the year: Johns Hopkins, RPI and Delaware Valley — two of which were on the road.

That being said, against three high-caliber offenses, the Mustangs have allowed less than 90 total rushing yards against them through their first three games.

“I don’t know how you can actually determine this, but I’m going to say that they’re probably the best 0-3 team in America,” Lycoming coach Mike Clark said at practice on Wednesday.

The Warriors also have been shining on defense as of late and have allowed just one touchdown in the past two games late in Week 3. On the other side of the ball this Saturday, Stevenson has rushed for less than 80 total yards of offense this season and is averaging 15 points per game.

True to Lycoming’s philosophy of emphasizing stoppage on the ground, the Warriors will still look to keep The Mustangs’ backfield in check. It’ll be a tale of two sides, however, as Stevenson bolsters one of the most potent defensive lines in Division III football.

Like Lebanon Valley, while both teams have more success in the air, the ground will be a neutral battle.

“Coach (Steve) Wiser forever has been about making people throw the football. Let’s make them one dimensional,” Clark said. “If you let people run the ball at you, then you give them the chance to do whatever they want.”

LYCOMING PLAYERS TO WATCH

Austin Rowley, Cole Senior, Hunter Campbell and Sam Pittsman

Rowley and Senior lead a solid Warriors defense with 20 tackles apiece. Senior made a notable tackle on Lycoming’s 2-yard line against Lebanon Valley in Week 2 to prevent a touchdown, forcing the Flying Dutchmen to settle for a field goal.

Campbell is coming off a six-tackle, two-interception performance that garnered MAC Defensive Player of the Week honors. The sophomore defensive back was also named to the D3football.com Team of the Week, Lycoming’s first player to be selected since David Tomb in 2019.

“We were excited a year ago when he decided to come here. We thought he had a chance to become a really good player, then we didn’t get to play,” Clark said on Campbell’s production on defense. “He stood out pretty early in the process, so we’re not surprised at his success.”

Pittsman is another anchor for the Warriors’ defense. The senior defensive end has 18 tackles so far this season, eight of which came this past Saturday.

STEVENSON PLAYER TO WATCH

Ryan Sedgwick

The Mustangs have one solid, accurate quarterback. Sedgwick made program history in 2019 with a record of 221 of 328 passing for 3,234 yards, 30 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He threw for over 300 yards in four games and picked up numerous awards and accolades along the way.

“We don’t want to give up big plays ever. They’re always really explosive, fortunately they’ve lost some really great wideouts,” Clark said on Stevenson’s offense. “But a good quarterback, we saw in Week 1 what playing a good quarterback can do to you. They are accurate and can make receivers better.”

This year, Sedgwick holds a 58.5% completion percentage and is averaging 219 yards per game through the air. While Lycoming’s run defense has grown sturdier with each passing week thus far, the Warriors could face another challenge against the pass.

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