Downingtown East routs Roman

Downingtown East's Chris Beals (right) hauls in a long pass near the end zone ahead of Roman Catholic's Dmetri Kelly in the first half Friday, September 7, 2012. Beals scored the team's second touchdown on the next play. MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / Staff Photographer
Downingtown East's Chris Beals (right) hauls in a long pass near the end zone ahead of Roman Catholic's Dmetri Kelly in the first half Friday, September 7, 2012. Beals scored the team's second touchdown on the next play. MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / Staff Photographer

The second-ranked Cougars rolled to a 42-20 victory, as the Cahillites were plagued by turnovers and penalties.

Posted: September 08, 2012

In Friday night's nonleague showdown against Roman Catholic, Downingtown East showed that it was very much deserving off all the preseason attention it had received.

The Cougars, with Kyle Lauletta passing for 226 yards and four touchdowns, blasted the turnover- and penalty-prone Cahillites, 42-20, at Downingtown West's Kottmeyer Stadium.

East, ranked No. 2 in Southeastern Pennsylvania by The Inquirer, broke the game open with four second-quarter scores. No. 5 Roman was held to 9 rushing yards and three first downs in the first half.

The 35-point mercy rule kicked in with a little less than eight minutes remaining in the third quarter when Lauletta threw a 4-yard TD toss to Michigan State-bound wideout Jay Harris.

Before intermission, Lauletta, headed to Richmond, connect on 12 of 17 throws for 208 yards and three scores. For the game, he was 14 for 19.

The Cougars (2-0) applied consistent pressure on Mike Keir, sacking the Cahillites' senior quarterback five times.

Through three quarters, East's defense held Roman (1-1) to 5 yards rushing and 146 passing.

Linebackers Nelson Lee Lucas-Murphy (Robert Morris recruit) and Thad Stevenson-Panchisin and ends Elijah Griffin (Coastal Carolina) and Milton Hearns led the charge.

Roman coughed the ball up five times in the first half, including twice on pooch kickoffs. Late in the second frame, linebacker Wade Mastrog recovered a Keir fumble and returned it 43 yards to set up Josh Zahniser's 1-yard TD plunge.

East had opened the contest with a five-play, 80-yard scoring drive. It was set up by fullback Chris Beals' 54-yard reception and was capped by Lauletta's 5-yard, right-side toss to Beals.

Roman's only highlight before the break was Will Fuller's 59-yard catch-and-run for a TD late in the first quarter.

Cahillites sophomore tailback Dimetri Kelly, who had rushed for 159 yards and three touchdowns in last week's come-from-behind triumph over Malvern Prep in Wildwood, was limited to 20 yards on 13 attempts.

In East's second-quarter outburst, Lauletta found Beals for a second TD, this one covering 8 yards, and delivered a 14-yard pass to wideout Dayne Foley to make it 20-7. Lauletta's 12-yard rush, followed by Zahniser's conversion run, put Roman in a 21-point hole.

Overall, Roman was penalized 10 times for 93 yards. Fuller, a Notre Dame recruit, managed four receptions for 86 yards.

In the fourth quarter, with the second-stringers in from both sides, Cahillites junior speedster Malik Jones scored on runs on 60 and 2 yards.

Roman Catholic 7 0 0 13 – 20

Downingtown East 6 29 7 0 – 42

DE: Beals 4 pass from Lauletta (kick blocked)

RC: Fuller 59 pass from Keir (Isaac kick)

DE: Beals 8 pass from Lauletta (run failed)

DE: Foley 14 pass from Lauletta (Zahniser run)

DE: Lauletta 12 run (Zahniser run)

DE: Zahniser 1 run (White kick)

DE: Harris 4 pass from Lauletta (White kick)

RC: Jones 60 run (Isaac kick)

RC: Jones 2 run (run failed)


Contact Rick O'Brien

at robrien@phillynews.com, or on Twitter @ozoneinq. Read his blog, "The O'Zone," at www.philly.com/ozone

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