Record-Setting Performance by McInerney Leads Lake Forest at Lawrence

Photo by Steve Frommell, d3photography.com
Photo by Steve Frommell, d3photography.com

Senior defensive end Jordan McInerney set program records with 5.5 sacks and 6.5 tackles for loss Saturday night in the Foresters' 42-14 victory at Lawrence University.

In addition to the single-game records, McInerney took over as Lake Forest's all-time leader with 53.5 career tackles for loss and his 29.0 sacks over the last four season ranks tied-for-second in team annals. His 14.5 sacks this season are just one shy of the school record and his 21.0 tackles for loss trail yet another mark by just 2.5. He led all players in Saturday night's contest with 13 tackles, including eight solos.

The Lake Forest defense limited Lawrence to just 190 yards of offense and registered 13 tackles for loss. Senior linebacker Johnny Laponte forced a fumble and returned it 46 yards and junior cornerback jordan Briggs picked off a pass and returned it 33.

McInerney was not the only Forester to set a team record on Saturday. Freshman wide receiver and kick returned A.J. Jackson brought a punt back 50 yards to the end zone to become the first player in program history with three punt return touchdowns to his credit. His 358 yards on punt returns this season surpassed the previous program best by 55 and there are still two more games left in the regular season. Jackson also caught four passes for 125 yards and scored on catches of 54 and 10 yards. He now has 1,430 all-purpose yards and 10 total touchdowns on the year.

Senior quarterback Bill Degnan finished the evening with six completions for 157 yards and three touchdowns, having also connected with junior wideout John Rall on a 5-yard score. He also reached the end zone himself on a 1-yard run.

Sophomore tailback Stone Matthews carried the ball 20 times for a season-high 154 yards while junior Alex Adams II added 33 yards on seven carries, including one for a touchdown late in the first quarter.

The touchdown by Adams cut the Vikings' early lead to 7-6. Degnan hit Rall for a a touchdown and two-point conversion early in the second and went into the locker room at halftime ahead 21-7 after connecting with Jackson on a 54-yarder later in the period. Degnan's run and Jackson's punt return extended the lead to 35-7 after three quarters and they combined for one more score early in the fourth. Lawrence closed out the scoring with a final touchdown drive in the closing minutes of the game.

The Foresters are now 7-1 overall and 4-0 in Midwest Conference North Division play this season. Lawrence fell to 1-7 overall and 0-4 in the division.

Lake Forest will host St. Norbert College, which is also 4-0 in divisional play, next Saturday at 1:00 p.m. The winner will advance to the MWC Championship Game at Monmouth College on November 16.