Football Announces 2017 Schedule

Football Announces 2017 Schedule

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Flash Points:
  • SFU Football has released its 2017 schedule.
  • The Red Flash hosts five games at DeGol Field.
  • The non-conference portion of the schedule features an in-state rival, a CAA team, two Big South teams and an Ohio Valley team.
  • Saint Francis looks to repeat as NEC Champions after capturing the school's first NEC Title in 2016.

LORETTO, Pa. – As Spring practice is set to begin, the Saint Francis Football team has announced its 2017 schedule.  The Red Flash, led by Head Coach Chris Villarrial, will look to repeat as NEC Champions after winning its first ever NEC Title and making its first ever FCS Playoffs appearance in 2016. 
 
Saint Francis posted a 7-5 record last season, recording back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 1991-92.  SFU went 5-1 in NEC play and 4-0 at home, extending its home win streak to nine games.
 
The 2017 schedule will feature five home games, including three straight to start the season.  In the non-conference portion, SFU will host an in-state rival and a CAA team, while traveling for games against two Big South opponents and an Ohio Valley team.
 
The Red Flash returns four All-NEC selections, including All-America receiver Kamron Lewis (Fresno, Calif./Edison).  SFU also returns First Team All-NEC running back Marcus Bagley (Cleveland Heights, Ohio/Cleveland Heights) and Second Team All-NEC defensive backs Delondo Boyd (Indian Head, Md./Henry E. Lackey) and Malik Duncan (Cleveland, Ohio/Cleveland Central Catholic).

 
3140 Sept. 2 – Lock Haven, 12 p.m., DeGol Field
2016 Record: 4-7
Conference: Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference
Series History: 5-1
Last Meeting: L, 26-13 (Sept. 16, 1950)
 
The Red Flash opens its 2017 schedule against in-state rival Lock Haven.  The Bald Eagles won four of their last six games to close the 2016 campaign.  Running back John Ford returns after recording 841 yards and seven touchdowns last season.  Defensive back Isaiah Flamer had 79 tackles and four interceptions to lead the returns among the Bald Eagles' defense.  Lock Haven averaged 29.4 points per game.
 
53 Sept. 9 – Wagner, 12 p.m., DeGol Field
2016 Record: 6-5
NEC Record/Place: 4-2/T-3rd
Series History: Wagner leads 22-4
Last Meeting: L, 31-24 (Nov. 19, 2016)
 
After having already clinched the NEC Regular Season Title and a bid to the FCS Playoffs, SFU suffered a 31-24 setback to end the regular season in 2016.  Zack Drayer (Hershey, Pa./Hershey ) threw for 311 yards and three touchdowns, but was picked off three times.  Cyrus Holder (Uniondale, N.Y./Milford Academy) had two catches for 128 yards and two scores, including a 92-yard touchdown catch, while Kamron Lewis (Fresno, Calif./Edison) had four receptions for 122 yards and a touchdown.  Solomon Leaeno (Kapolei, Hawaii/James Campbell) led the SFU defense with nine tackles and two sacks.  The Seahawks could have a strong offense in 2017, with quarterback Alex Thomson, running back Denzel Knight and receiver John Williams all returning.  Linebacker Santoni Graham is back after recording 83 tackles, with 9.5 for loss. 
 
70 Sept. 16 – Towson, 7 p.m., DeGol Field, Family Weekend
2016 Record: 4-7
Conference: CAA
Series History: Towson leads 5-0
Last Meeting: L, 35-28 (Sept. 10, 2016)
 
The Red Flash had a 28-13 halftime lead in last year's contest at Unitas Stadium.  Lorenzo Jerome (Sunrise, Fla./J.P. Taravella) picked up a fumble and returned it 89 yards for a touchdown on the second play of the game.  Drayer accounted for three touchdowns, hitting Lewis for 13 and 60-yard scores and adding a seven-yard run.  Towson's offense returns quarterback Morgan Mahalak and STATS FCS Freshman All-America running back Shane Simpson.  Linebacker Chris Tedder posted a team-best 74 tackles in 2016.
 
1536 Sept. 30 – Liberty, TBA, Williams Stadium
2016 Record: 6-5
Conference: Big South
Series History: Liberty Leads 2-0
Last Meeting: L, 52-7 (Sept. 4, 2010)
 
Saint Francis' first road trip of the season will be in Lynchburg, Va.  The Flames tied for the Big South regular season title with Charleston Southern.  Liberty averaged 27.5 points and 348.5 yards per game last year.  Quarterback Stephen Calvert returns after throwing for 1,931 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2016.  Running backs Carrington Mosley and Todd Macon also return as well as defensive end Juwan Wells.
 
3188 Oct. 7 – Presbyterian, TBA, Bailey Memorial Stadium
2016 Record: 2-9
Conference: Big South
Series History: First Meeting
 
The Red Flash meets the Blue Hose for the second of four straight road games.  Presbyterian was 1-5 in the Big South last season, finishing fifth in the conference standings.  Presbyterian averaged 8.9 points and allowed 30.9 per game last year.  Quarterback Ben Cheek threw for 837 yards and two touchdowns, while running for 168 yards and a score.  Linebacker Grant Beidel led the Blue Hose with 75 tackles, including four for loss, 2.5 sacks and two interceptions.
 
82 Oct. 14 – Bryant, 12 p.m., Bulldog Stadium
2016 Record: 5-6
NEC Record/Place: 4-2/T-3rd
Series History: Bryant Leads 6-3
Last Meeting: W, 38-3 (Oct. 15, 2016)
 
The Red Flash earned a big 38-3 win at DeGol Field last season.  SFU jumped out to a 14-0 lead with touchdown runs from Bagley and Wesley Nagaseu (Waipahu, Hawaii/Waipahu).  After a field goal by Bryant, SFU scored the next 24 points.  Drayer connected with Lewis and Marcus Alston (Baltimore, Md./Mount St. Joseph) on touchdown passes before Jalen Wells (Westerville, Ohio/Thomas Worthington) scored on a 40-yard pick-six.  James Perry enters his first year as Head Coach of the Bulldogs after seven years as the offensive coordinator at Princeton. 
 
9942 Oct. 21 – Duquesne, TBA, Arthur J. Rooney Athletic Field
2016 Record: 8-3
NEC Record/Place: 5-1/T-1st
Series History: Duquesne Leads 35-8
Last Meeting: W, 14-10 (Oct. 21, 2016)
 
In a thrilling Friday night game at DeGol Field last year, the Red Flash came out on top after Drayer's one-yard sneak put SFU ahead with 50 seconds left.  Drayer led a 10-play, 63-yard game-winning drive.  He had two touchdown runs on the night.  An interception by Wells helped to seal the win.  Duquesne returns STATS FCS Jerry Rice Award (Freshman of the Year) winner running back A.J. Hines, who ran for 1,291 yards and 13 touchdowns last year.  Linebacker Carter Henderson returns after recording a team-best 90 tackles, including 7.5 for loss.
 
54 Oct. 28 – Robert Morris, 12 p.m., DeGol Field, Homecoming
2016 Record: 2-9
NEC Record/Place: 1-5/T-5th
Series History: Robert Morris Leads 15-7-1
Last Meeting: W, 24-10 (Oct. 8, 2016)
 
Saint Francis earned its fifth straight win in the series with a monster performance from Jerome, who had 10 tackles, 2.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks, two interceptions, two pass breakups, a 48-yard touchdown catch and 108 kick return yards.  Drayer threw two touchdown passes, a 14-yard strike to Bagley to go with Jerome's catch, and ran for another score.  Dante Satcher was an all-purpose weapon for RMU last year, with 465 kick return yards and two scores to go with 258 rushing yards.  Linebacker Gee Stanley had 12.5 TFL and 8.5 sacks last year.
63 Nov. 4 – Central Connecticut State, Noon, Arute Field
2016 Record: 2-9
NEC Record/Place: 1-5/T-5th
Series History: Central Connecticut State Leads 19-5
Last Meeting: W, 31-21 (Nov. 12, 2016)
 
The Red Flash clinched the NEC Regular Season title on its home field with its 31-21 win over CCSU last year.  Drayer accounted for four touchdowns on the day, with a two-yard run to go with throws to Alston, Lewis and Jordan Millberry (Harrisburg, Pa./Susquehanna Township).  Lance Geesey (Harrisburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley) added a 28-yard field goal.  Hakeem Kinard (York, Pa./York Catholic) led the SFU defense with 10 tackles and a sack.  CCSU quarterback Jacob Dolegala was 14th in the FCS with 2,934 passing yards last year and threw for 15 touchdowns and ran for five more.  Running back Cameron Nash and receivers Joey Fields and Jose Garcia also return.  Linebacker Randall Laguerre had a team-best 116 tackles, with 5.5 for loss, last season.
 
80 Nov. 11 – Sacred Heart, Noon, DeGol Field, Senior Day
2016 Record: 6-5
NEC Record/Place: 1-5/T-5th
Series History: Saint Francis Leads 11-10
Last Meeting: W, 38-17 (Oct. 29, 2016)
 
Saint Francis earned a 38-17 win at Campus Field last year.  The Red Flash scored the final 21 points of the game to pull away for the victory.  Lewis caught three touchdown passes from Drayer, including five, seven and 73-yard grabs.  Drayer also threw a 26-yard touchdown to Colin Hindle (Redondo Beach, Calif./Redondo Union) and Jymere Jordan-Toney (Philadelphia, Pa./Franklin) ran for a three-yard score.  Boyd led the SFU defense with 11 tackles and a pass breakup.  The Pioneers will have to replace four-year starting quarterback R.J. Noel and running backs Nate Chavious and Ose Imeokparia.  Senior linebacker C.J. Parvelus led the team with 100 tackles and 12.5 TFL in 2016.
 
577 Nov. 18 – Eastern Kentucky, TBA, Roy Kidd Stadium
2016 Record: 3-8
Conference: Ohio Valley
Series History: First meeting
 
The Red Flash finishes the regular season at Eastern Kentucky.  The Colonels were 2-6 in Ohio Valley games last season, finishing eighth in the conference standings.  SFU concludes the regular season with a non-conference game for the first time since 2007 against La Salle.  Running back Ethan Thomas led the Colonels with 385 rushing yards last year and quarterback Tyler Swafford returns after starting four games and throwing for 940 yards and five touchdowns.  Linebacker Jeffrey Canady was seventh in the FCS last season with 123 tackles, including 46 solo and five for loss.  EKU averaged 26.1 points and allowed 30.5 per game. 
 
 
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