The St. John Fisher College football team dropped a 28-17 decision to visiting Salisbury University in a pivotal Empire 8 Conference contest between two of the nation's top teams.
With the loss, Fisher, ranked No. 8 in the AFCA poll and No. 9 in the d3football.com poll, falls to 4-1 overall and 1-1 in the Empire 8. Salisbury, ranked No. 10 in the AFCA poll and No. 7 in the d3football.com poll, improves to 4-1, 2-0.
Salisbury scored two touchdowns and created three turnovers in the fourth quarter to spoil Fisher's Homecoming game.
The Sea Gulls took the lead for good with 6:32 left on a five-yard run by Ross Flanigan. The drive was set up after backup-quarterback Tyler Fenti
fumbled inside the Fisher 10.
Two possessions later, Salisbury scored on a 32-yard interception return with 2:59 remaining to seal the win.
Fenti, who relieved injured starting quarterback Ryan Kramer
, who left in the first quarter, played well for most of the game. He started the game by completing 10 of his first 11 passes and finished the game 11-for-19 for 122 yards. His two-yard rushing touchdown with 5:18 left in the third quarter gave the Cardinals a 17-14 lead.
After a scoreless first quarter, Fisher took a 3-0 lead on a 32-yard field goal from Brendan Carey
with 12:36 left in the second. Salisbury took a 7-3 lead with a 77-yard pass from quarterback Dan Griffin to Isaiah Taylor with 4:54 left.
Fisher, however, answered right back, marching 64 yards on 12 plays with Cody Miller
scoring on a five-yard run in the closing moments of the half. Miller finished the game with 106 yards on 24 carries.
The Cardinals held a 42-14 advantage in offensive plays ran in the first half and outgained the Sea Gulls 232-110.
The Fisher defense played well throughout the game, holding Salisbury to just 125 yards on the ground on 44 carries. The Sea Gulls entered the game averaging nearly 320 yards per game on the ground.Zach Dolan
led the Fisher defense with 10 tackles. Nick LoBrutto and Travis Tones
were both in on eight stops.
Fisher will return to action at 1 p.m. next Saturday at Alfred University.