All of those questions surrounding Bishop Lynch following an 0-2 start seem to have been answered as Friday's absolute domination of previously unbeaten Nolan Catholic hushed the remaining critics.
The Friars (3-2) obliterated a Nolan defense that boasted gaudy numbers but had been untested by quality opposition. Charles Crawford rushed for 175 yards and 5 touchdowns and the defense held the Vikings (5-1) to less than a yard per carry while forcing 3 turnovers in a 48-24 homecoming rout at Roffino Stadium.
With three straight wins to their credit, the Friars enter the bye week with a massive wave of momentum, one they hope to ride when district play begins Oct. 19.
Nolan entered the contest allowing just 23 combined points and less than 100 yards per game. Bishop Lynch put up 17 points in the first quarter, 31 in the first half and rolled to the tune of 346 total yards (235 rushing) and more than 7 yards per carry.
The defense recovered 3 Nolan fumbles, sacked the opposing quarterback 4 times and pressured him 14 times.
The Friars forced a turnover on the second play from scrimmage, allowing them to take a quick 3-0 lead. Nolan struck back to take its only lead with a 75-yard drive, but the Friars scored 28 straight for a 31-7 lead late in the first half.
Bishop Lynch took its largest lead – 28 points – with less than five minutes to play in the third. Crawford's fourth touchdown put the Friars in front, 38-10. The junior scored on runs of 8, 2, 60, 36, and 24 yards, respectively.
• Michael Schwartz was big on both sides of the ball, collecting 7 tackles (2 for loss), a sack and a recovered fumble on defense. His 31-yard touchdown reception from Kaidon Salter in the second period was a blow Nolan never recovered from, putting BL ahead 24-7.
• Carson Garrett was phenomenal, hitting all 6 PATs and a pair of field goals from 30+ yards. He also had 6 kickoffs go for touchbacks and averaged 45 yards on 5 punts with 3 resting inside the opponents' 20-yard line. He booted a season-best 62-yard punt in the game.
• Salter was efficient for a third straight outing, passing for 111 yards and a score with 0 turnovers. The sophomore is 3-0 as a starter when not throwing an interception.
• The Murphy twins were unstoppable Friday. Grayson posted 9 tackles (4 for loss) with 1.5 sacks, a fumble forced and a fumble recovered. Gabriel had a team-high 15 tackles (3 for loss) to go with 0.5 sacks.
• Jayden Evans registered 10 tackles and forced 2 Nolan fumbles.
The Friars head into the bye week and get extra time to prepare for their district opener Oct. 19 at Parish Episcopal. The Panthers (5-0) will be in action against Bishop Dunne on Friday.
Friday, Oct. 5 @ Roffino Stadium
NC 7 3 7 7 – 24
BL 17 14 7 10 – 48
BL – Carson Garrett 37-yard field goal
NC – 36-yard pass (kick good)
BL – Charles Crawford 8-yard run (Garrett kick)
BL – Crawford 2-yard run (Garrett kick)
BL – Crawford 60-yard run (Garrett kick)
NC – 34-yard field goal
BL – Crawford 36-yard run (Garrett kick)
NC – 1-yard run (kick good)
NC – 24-yard pass (kick good)
BL – Garrett 33-yard field goal
BL – Crawford 24-yard run (Garrett kick)
TEAM STATS NC BL
First Downs 21 17
Total Yards 279 346
Passing 250 111
Comp-Att 23-40 9-19
Rushes-Yards 31-29 33-235
Penalties 7-99 21-163
Fumbles lost 3 0
INT thrown 0 0
Turnovers 3 0