BRONX, N.Y. - On a cold and windy day at Fordham’s Jack Coffey Field, it was a battle of defense and special teams units as both teams combined for 10 turnovers and the Hoyas blocked two punts. However, Fordham kicked a field goal with 6:08 remaining to defeat the Georgetown University football team, 17-14, on Saturday afternoon in a Patriot League game. It was the fourth-consecutive loss for the Hoyas, who dropped to 3-4 overall and 0-2 in conference action.
Clay Norris (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park) started at quarterback and was 6-of-15 for 112 yards and a touchdown. Brock Johnson (Newport Beach, Calif./Mission Viejo) came in in the second half and finished 8-of-14 for 57 yards. Brandon Williams (Germantown, Md./Northwest) caught two passes for 67 yards while Justin Harrell (New Orleans, La./Newman) had a team-high six catches for 44 yards.
The Georgetown defense was stout all afternoon, holding Fordham, which came in averaging 545 yards per game, to 285 total yards. Additionally, the Rams’ Chase Edwards, who led the nation in rushing touchdowns, was kept out of the end zone. Ramon Lyons (Orlando, Fla./Ocoee/West Orange) led the Hoyas with a career-high nine tackles, including three tackles-for-loss. Daniel Yankovich (Ramsey, N.J./Don Bosco Prep) chipped in eight tackles, including a sack and 1.5 TFL. Jelani Williamson (Silver Spring, Md./Good Counsel) intercepted his third pass of the season, tying him for the Patriot League lead. J’V’on Butler (Melbourne, Fla./Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy), Matthew Deal (Tallahassee, Fla./Maclay School) and Brennan Sawicki (Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Scioto) also all had a fumble recoveries.
Fordham (5-2, 2-0 PL) jumped out to a 14-0 lead with scores on its first two possessions, connecting on 3- and 57-yard touchdown passes.
Isaac Ellsworth (Bedford, Texas/Euless Trinity) returned the ensuing kickoff 31 yards to give the Hoyas possession at their own 41-yard line. On the first play, Norris connected with Williams on the next play for a 59-yard score. Williams outmuscled his defender to haul in the catch before sprinting down the right sideline for the touchdown.
After giving up 127 yards over the first two drives, the GU defense clamped down and allowed just 39 yards for the rest of the half. Following a quick three-and-out, AJ Schimmelpfennig (Atlanta, Ga./Lambert) busted through the line to block Georgetown’s first punt of the day.
The Hoyas were unable to convert the block into points, but on Fordham’s next possession it was Khristian Tate’s (Warner Robins, Ga./Covenant Academy) turn as he blocked his second punt of the season to give GU first-and-goal at the 10-yard line.
Georgetown drove the ball down to the 1-yard line before Ellsworth was able to run around the left end to score and tie the game, 14-14, with 11:27 remaining in the second quarter.
Williamson picked off a deep pass attempt as time expired to keep the score tied at halftime.
The defense continued to shine in the third quarter, allowing just 26 total yards of offense. Midway through the quarter, Phil Novacki (Great Falls, Va./Langley) laid a big hit on the Fordham quarterback for a 7-yard sack and forcing a fumble. Sawicki fell on it to give GU possession inside Fordham territory. The offense, however, was not able to score as the game remained tied, 14-14, after three quarters.
The Rams drove down inside the Georgetown 10-yard line, but the Hoya defense was again up for the challenge. Fordham’s Edmonds rushed three times to get the ball down to the 1-yard line. On fourth down, Tate broke through into the backfield to stop Edmonds for no gain and turn possession over to the Hoyas.
An interception gave the ball back to Fordham deep inside GU territory. Despite another strong stand by the defense, a 24-yard field goal gave the Rams the lead, 17-14, with 6:08 remaining.
The Hoyas had a couple more chances, including getting the ball back with 2:05 left, but were unable to drive to tie the score as another Fordham interception sealed the game.
Georgetown will remain on the road for a matchup at Lafayette on Saturday, Oct. 29. Kickoff at Fisher Stadium is set for 12:30 p.m.