The University of La Verne football team hosts the University of Puget Sound Loggers on Saturday.
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
Stadium: Ortmayer Stadium, La Verne, Calif.
This one should be close. The Leopards handled the Loggers last season; a late score by Puget Sound made the game seem closer than it was. But the Loggers have done well against SCIAC opponents so far this year, beating Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 45-35 in their opener and dropping a close game to Redlands 28-21, a game that was tied 0-0 at halftime.
The Loggers' quarterbacks have combined for seven touchdowns and no interceptions so far this season. Senior Nick Bernhardt got the start against the Stags but did not play against Redlands, so it's yet to be seen whether he or sophomore Murdock Rutledge will be behind center. The Loggers have not turned the ball over this season.
La Verne lost its opener but had an opportunity to work out some of the kinks last week in an exhibition against CETYS where the Leopards were firing on all cylinders. Veteran dual-threat quarterback Josh Evans and running back James Gonsalves will need to have a big game against a defense that has allowed 31.5 points per game.
Defensive end Austin Brown will need to have a big impact against the Loggers as well. The 2017 First Team All-SCIAC selection provided a bright spot in La Verne's opener at Whitworth scoring the Leopards' only points when he sacked quarterback Leif Eriksen for a safety and totaled three tackles for losses. He will need to continue to cause disruption behind the line of scrimmage to put pressure on a pair of quarterbacks who have been performing well when they have time to throw.
The Leopards beat the Loggers last year in their season opener, winning 33-25 at Ortmayer Stadium.
La Verne and Puget Sound have split their recent series with each team winning a game apiece. The Loggers' last win against La Verne came in 2016 at Baker Stadium.
Who to Watch
Keep an on running back Martaveous Holliday to make an impact in the game. The senior looked good against CETYS last week and although Gonsalves will likely get the start, Holliday should get enough touches to rack up yards against a defense that allowed 236 yards on the ground against Redlands.
On the defensive end, veteran linebacker Conner Johnson will anchor the defensive unit for La Verne with former Bishop Amat Lancer standout Andrew Camargo looking to cause disruption in the secondary.
No matter who's taking the snaps for the Loggers, it's no question that receiver Alvin Johnson will be their favorite target. In just two games the junior has totaled 11 catches with 289 receiving yards.
What's at Stake
The Leopards need a win to gain momentum before opening SCIAC play. A big win over CETYS provided a confidence boost and La Verne will need to utilize that to add a tick to the win collum.
Puget Sound is looking to finish with a winning record against SCIAC schools and ride an already successful nonconference schedule into Northwest Conference play.
How to Follow
Tomorrow's game will be broadcast on leopardathletics.com with commentary simulcast by Leo FM. Follow the game with the link below:
$10 Adults | $7 Senior Citizens | Children under 12: Free | LV Students: Free w/ID | Military and LVAA Members: Free |Programs: $1
In addition to the normal Ortmayer Stadium main entrance, fans will be able to enter through the southeast entrance of the stadium near the parking structure.Watch Live Follow ULV Athletics on Twitter Like us on Facebook Watch on Youtube Follow us on Instagram