By MIKE MEILER
Niagara Gazette — These Lancers are for real.
The Lewiston-Porter football team made that clear Friday night, knocking off No. 10 small school Maryvale, 47-32, at the Flyers’ homecoming game.
“We knew this was a big game that could set us up for a playoff run,” Lew-Port coach Jon Hoover said. “We knew we’d control our own destiny with a win.
“We talked all week about coming out, winning every play and controlling the line of scrimmage. We did all that tonight.”
The Lancers jumped ahead early, outscoring Maryvale 14-0 in the first quarter and 33-6 in the first half thanks to two timely fumbles.
Junior running back Dan Hogan kicked off the scoring, capping the game’s opening drive with an 8-yard run. The drive went 14 plays and 72 yards, eating up most of the first quarter.
On Maryvale’s ensuing possession, running back Taylor Jordan fumbled the ball, which Lew-Port’s Dan Reagan scooped up and returned 60 yards for a score to open up the game.
After a Maryvale three-and-out, Lew-Port quarterback Josh Daul hit senior wide receiver Billy Schiavitti for a 32-yard touchdown. Maryvale fumbled the following kickoff, and four plays later junior Zak Nalbone scored on a 19-yard run.
Another Maryvale three-and-out and a 36-yard touchdown pass from Daul to Reagan pushed the score to 33-0, and a late Maryvale touchdown closed the scoring in the first half.
Daul threw two more touchdowns in the second half, the first to his brother, Jesse, and the second a 67-yard bomb to Schiavitti. Maryvale scored twice in the fourth quarter when the game was out of hand.
Lew-Port (4-1, 3-1 B West) remains tied with Burgard for second place in its division. Maryvale drops to 2-3 on the season and 2-2 in the division.
The Lancers won only one game last season, and the sudden turnaround comes as a bit of a surprise in some high school football circles. Hoover credits his his players for putting the team on the rise.
“This team is an enigma,” Hoover said. “We were told we weren’t going to win anything. We were told we were going to end up at the bottom of the division again. These guys, they wouldn’t have it. They kept their heads up and keep bringing it every week.”
The Lancers face Cheektowaga, the third-ranked small school in Western New York, in Lew-Port’s homecoming game next Friday.