MILTON – Coming in as road underdogs, Lawrence Academy put the Independent School League on notice with massive 40-18 victory yesterday against Milton Academy.
The Spartans (2-0) opened the game with a 12-play, 75-yard drive that was capped by a 14-yard TD strike from junior quarterback Michael Landolfi to wideout Jovon Mobley with 4:17 to play in the first quarter.
Following a Milton Academy (1-1) three-and-out, Lawrence Academy would again drive the field, but the visitors were halted at the Mustang 24 facing a fourth-and-17.
Landolfi would heave it up to Gavin Hatfield at the right pylon for the clutch score, making it 14-0 just 2:59 into the second frame.
After another Milton drive quickly stalled, the Spartans would tack on three points with a 34-yard field goal from Rollin Hughes, making it 17-0 with 3:43 to play before halftime.
Milton Academy’s offense finally made some headway on the ensuing drive, as a couple of chunk plays would lead to a five-yard end zone dash for senior QB Jacob Holtschlag, making it 17-6 with 1:41 to go.
LA would answer with a five-play, 75-yard drive that took only 55 seconds, ending with a 20-yard TD pass from Landolfi to Mobley, making it 24-6.
Holtschlag would be intercepted on the next play by senior linebacker C.J. Schuster, before Hughes would belt another 34-yard field goal through the uprights to make it 27-6 at halftime.
The Landolfi-Mobley connection did not slow down in the second half, as the two would connect for their third touchdown of the day on a 25-yard laser to make it 34-6 with 6:23 to go in the third.
It would only take Milton Academy four plays and 1:44 to answer with a Holtschlag two-yard touchdown rush to make it 34-12.
The Mustangs would cut it to a two-possession game just 54 seconds into the final quarter, when Holtschlag (12/14, 203 yards, interception) found Ben Waterman in the end zone for a three-yard score, making it 34-18.
However after a few short-lived drives, Lawrence Academy would close the door when Hatfield completed a 63-yard drive with a two-yard TD rush, making it 40-18 with 2:45 remaining.
“We wanted this one,” said LA head coach Jason Swepson. “The players bought in from day one and we’re happy with the result. The whole team, the whole program wanted the challenge.”
Hatfield was a bulldozer, ending his day with 21 rushes for 163 yards and a score, while adding six catches for 53 yards and a receiving touchdown.
“He’s tough as nails,” Swepson said of his senior running back. “We put him in different situations, back field, wide receiver this week, and he handled it all. He’s a true Spartan.”
Landolfi wound up 17-of-25 passing for 221 yards with four touchdowns and an interception, tacking on 61 rushing yards on seven attempts.
“We put in work every week,” Landolfi said. “I love these guys, I’ve only known them two months but we love each other, and play for each other.”
His favorite target, fellow junior Jovon Mobley, hauled in eight catches for 118 yards and three touchdowns.