Monday, December 22, 2014

Another big performance by Penn punter Lopano

One of the unsung heroes in Penn’s 30-21 win over Harvard that clinched at least a share of the Ivy League football title was senior punter Scott Lopano.

Another big performance by Penn punter Lopano

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Penn's Scott Lopano averaged 43 yards on eight punts against Harvard (Marc Narducci/Staff)

One of the unsung heroes in Penn’s 30-21 win over Harvard that clinched at least a share of the Ivy League football title was senior punter Scott Lopano.

The only player in school history to amass more than 7,000 career punt yards, Lopano quietly set another school record with eight punts, giving him 192 for his career, surpassing Jeff Salvino, who had 186 between 1994-97.

Yet it was the quality of punts that played such a huge role in the win.

Lopano averaged 43 yards on his eight punts and had six inside the 20. He had a long punt of 53 yards.

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“Scott punted inside the 20 six times and probably five of the times it was inside the 15,” Penn coach Al Bagnoli said. “He did a terrific job.”

What is more is that Harvard, which entered the game averaging 7.1 yards per punt return, was able to return just two of the punts, for a total of seven yards.

Penn, which can clinch the outright Ivy League title with a win at Cornell on Saturday, has now won three Ivy League titles in the past four years.

Lopano was a big part of all three championships, and this season has enjoyed his best year. He is now averaging 41.4 yards on 54 punts. His net punting average is 38.5 yards.

Of all the Penn players, Lopano has been among the most consistent and in the biggest game of the year against favored Harvard, he had one was truly at his best.

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