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November 24. 2013 8:17PM

Allen Lessels' UNH Notebook: Like UNH, Lafayette football team has come on strong

DURHAM -- LAFAYETTE COLLEGE, like New Hampshire, had a rough start to its 2013 football season.

And like the Wildcats, the Leopards rallied in the second half. They closed out the regular season with a 50-28 win over Lehigh on Saturday to win the Patriot League championship and its automatic bid into the tournament.

UNH lost at Lehigh, 34-27, on Sept. 28.

Lafayette comes to Durham and Cowell Stadium on Saturday at noon to take on UNH in a first-round game in the NCAA tournament. The winner advances to the second round to face No. 5 seed Maine on Dec. 7.

Lafayette went 1-5 in its first six games and changed quarterbacks at midseason.

Freshmen Drew Reed took over and has been impressive. He completed 20 of his 27 passes for 378 yards and three touchdowns in the finale against Lehigh. In his seven games, he has completed 112 of 152 passes 73.7 percent) for 1,681 yards and 17 touchdowns with five interceptions.

Senior wide receiver Mark Ross and running back Ross Scheuerman are also major weapons on offense.

Ross has 68 catches for 1,047 yards and eight touchdowns. Scheuerman, a 6-foot-1 and 202-pound junior, has rushed for 1,034 yards and has scored 14 of Lafayette’s 15 touchdowns on the ground.

Lafayette finished the season 5-6 overall and 4-1 in the Patriot League and is the first team to make the FCS tournament with a record below .500.

Fordham of the Patriot League received an at-large bid to the tournament at 11-1. Fordham’s one loss was to Lafayette. The Rams were ineligible for the league title and automatic bid this year because of their use of athletic scholarships.

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THE men’s hockey team earned a split at No. 3-ranked Providence College over the weekend and jumps back into action Tuesday night at home against Harvard.

The Wildcats ran their winning streak to six games with a 3-2 overtime win on Friday night and dropped a 4-2 decision on Saturday.

Harvard, coached by former Manchester Monarch Ted Donato, is 3-5-1 overall and 2-4-1 in the ECAC.

UNH is 7-6-1 overall and 5-3-0 in Hockey East. The Wildcats are in second place in the league, two points behind Providence, which is 10-2-1 and 6-2-0.Casey DeSmith, UNH’s junior goalie from Rochester, came out of the weekend with a 2.00 goals-against average and a save percentage of .926.

Senior forward Kevin Goumas (five goals, 9 assists for 14 points) and junior defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk (3-11-14) lead the Wildcats in scoring.

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The men’s basketball team dropped to 2-3 with a 60-55 loss to Bryant at Lundholm on Sunday in a game delayed 45 minutes by a power outage.

Senior Chris Pelcher had 11 points and 13 rebounds for UNH and freshman Jacoby Armstrong had 15 points and six boards. Senior Jordon Bronner also had 15 points.

alessels@unionleader.com On Twitter: @AllenLessels


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