DAYTON, OHIO – The USD Toreros (3-2, 2-0 PFL) earned a 23-7 road victory over the Dayton Flyers before 3,032 fans at Welcome Stadium. The Torero defense turned in an excellent group effort in limiting the Flyers (1-4, 0-2 PFL) to just 294 yards of offense. Offensively quarterback Anthony Lawrence completed 19-of-30 for 273 yards and two scores and freshman running back Emilio Martinez rushed for 114 yards on 29 carries.
The Toreros jumped out to a 7-0 lead after taking the game’s opening drive 89 yards on 11 plays with QB Anthony Lawrence punching it in from 2-yards out for his first rushing score of the season. Lawrence connected with WR Justin Priest for a 42-yard strike that was the key play during the drive. After the defense shut down the Flyers on five plays, the Toreros answered again with Lawrence connecting with freshman WR Alex Spadone for a 32-yard TD strike and 14-0 lead with 2:14 to go that closed out an 8-play, 58-yard drive. Lawrence closed out the quarter completing 7-of-8 passes for 114 yards and one score, while adding the other score with his 2-yard TD rush.
In the second period the Torero defense continued its outstanding play. Late in the quarter the defense stopped Dayton on a 4th-and-1 from the San Diego 15-yard line with seniors Jonathan Petersen and Kishan Patel being credited with the tackle for loss. USD took over on their 17 and answered with a 7-play, 83-yard drive. Lawrence closed out the drive with five straight completions that was capped off with a 16-yard touchdown pass to tight end Zack Holland with 1:08 to go and a 21-0 lead. Dayton quickly answered with a 5-play, 68-yard drive to pull within 21-7 at the break. Quarterback Kyle Kaparos connected with tight end Adam Trautman for a 2-yard score.
The third period was pretty much a defensive battle between both clubs. USD did march down the field midway through the quarter. Lawrence connected with TE Ross Dwelley for a 27-yard first down completion to the Dayton 1-yard line. On the next play Zack Holland was stood up by Andrew Lutgens who forced and recovered the fumble. After taking over the Flyers were facing a 3rd-and-11 and Kaparos was forced into an intentional grounding penalty from the endzone. The two-point safety extended USD’s lead to 23-7 and the period would end with USD leading by 16.
With 6:47 to go in the game, David Tolbert picked off Kaparos at the Dayton 33-yard line and would return it to the 25. USD would turn the ball back over to the Flyers with just over five minutes to go, but would get it back once again. Jonathan Petersen collected his 5th sack of the season and now needs just five more over USD’s final six games to set a new Torero mark of 35.5.
Besides Lawrence and Martinez, the offense was bolstered by eight different receivers pulling in receptions. USD was paced by TE Ross Dwelley (6-82) and WR Justin Priest (5-90). Defensively USD was paced by freshman NB Kama Kamaka (8 stops, 5 solo), LB Kim Mahoney (6 tackles, 4 solo), SAF Colton Giorgi (6 stops) and CB David Tolbert (5 tackles, 1 interception).
The Toreros have a bye next weekend before returning to Torero Stadium on October 14th for its annual homecoming/family weekend game against the Morehead State Eagles.
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