Penn down 16-12 at halftime of opener

After a rather dull first quarter Saturday, both teams breathed life into the chilly Franklin Field and Lafayette is leading Penn 16-12 at halftime of the Quakers season opener.

Andrew O’Brien nailed a 47-yard field goal as the second quarter clock expired.

Facing a third and three from Penn’s 37 yard line, Andrew Shoop threw a bomb into the right of the endzone that was hauled in by wide out Mark Ross to take a 13-10 lead. On the ensuing point after attempt, Austin O’Brien’s kick was blocked, recovered by Penn junior Justyn Williams and taken all the way to the house for 2 points.

 Williams picked up some good blocks and made a few Leopards miss, most notably the last man, Pat Creahan, in mid field near the 30-yard line.  Williams went 92-yards and it was the first time since 1998 a Quaker had returned a blocked extra point for two-points.

Fullback Greg Schuster powered his way into the endzone for an 8-yard score with a little over 2 minutes to play in the first half to take a 10-7 lead. The nine play, 76-yard drive was highlighted by a long, elusive run by quarterback Billy Ragone as he weaved through the Leopards defense for a first down inside the red zone.

Earlier in the second quarter, Lafayette quarterback Andrew Shoop connected with running back Greg Schuster on a 44-yard score. The freshman got behind the Quakers pass defense down the right sideline and hauled in the deep, lob pass around the ten yard line before waltzing in for the score.

Freshman Connor Loftus converted his first career field goal attempt with a 21-yard kick early in the first quarter. He was heavily recruited out of Villa Park, Calif. He’s being looked at to fill a rather large void as the Quakers lost their all-time points leader, kicker Andrew Samson, to graduation.