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Cardinals Survive Storm in Road Opener, 35-20

Cardinals Survive Storm in Road Opener, 35-20

PAINESVILLE, Ohio - The Saginaw Valley State University football team opened the road portion of its 2011 schedule with an impressive 35-20 victory over Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference foe Lake Erie College tonight (Sept. 17).

The Cardinals would take an early 7-0 lead on an eight-yard touchdown run by Ronnie Lark (Flint, Mich./Powers Catholic HS) to cap off an eight play 44-yard drive. 

Sophomore quarterback Jonathon Jennings (Columbus, Ohio/Westerville South HS) would hit "Meijer Player of the Game" Jeff Janis (Tawas City, Mich./Tawas Area HS) in stride on a 76-yard pass to put the Cardinals up 14-0.  On the next possession after a Storm punt, Tim Hogue (Inkster, Mich.) would find paydirt from 13-yards out to put SVSU up 21-0 with 9:39 left in the first half.  Hogue would finish the night with 132 yards rushing on 17 carries to lead the Cardinals.

Lake Erie would light the scoreboard on an 11-yard pass from Sean Bedevelsky to Brandon James to cut the Cardinal advantage to 21-7 with 6:16 left in the half.

The Cardinals would extend their lead to 28-7 when Jennings hit Nick Gallina (Troy, Mich.)  on a 59-yard touchdown strike.  Jennings would finish the evening 19-of-29 passing for 314 yards and three touchdowns.

The Storm would start to mount a comeback midway through the third quarter when Bedevelsky scored on a two-yard run to cut the Cardinal advantage to 28-14.  Lake Erie then recovered the ensuing onside kick and march down for a 30-yard field goal by Sam Marcotte to bring the score to 28-17.  Marcotte would add a 35-yard field goal midway through the fourth quarter to bring the Storm within eight, 28-20.

On the following Saginaw Valley possession, Jennings and Janis would hook-up for their second touchdown on the night, this time for 34-yards to push the lead to 35-20.  Janis would finish the game with four catches for 144 yards and two touchdowns.

The defense was led by Jeff Heath (Lake Orion, Mich.), who finished the night with ten tackles.  Defensive end Brandon Williams (Flint, Mich./Kearsley HS) and linebacker Grant Caserta (Holland, Mich./West Ottawa HS) would both add seven stops for the game.

With the win the Cardinals improve to 2-0 overall on the season and 2-0 in the GLIAC, while Lake Erie falls to 1-2 overall on the season and 0-2 in the GLIAC.  SVSU will return home next Saturday (Sept. 24) when they host Northwood University in the annual Axe Bowl at 7:00 PM at Wickes Stadium.