Foresters Come Away with 35-14 Victory at Macalester

Photo by Matt Weidner
Photo by Matt Weidner

Senior tailback Joey Valdivia ran for 278 yards and four touchdowns to lead the Lake Forest College football team to a 35-14 victory at Macalester College on Saturday.

Valdivia carried the ball 30 times and his yardage total and 9.3 yards per attempt on the day each rank third in program history. His scores came on runs of 57, 12, 74, and 44 yards. It was his third four-touchdown game of the year and his 19 rushing scores lead the nation and are the highest single-season total in team annals. Valdivia also surpassed the 1,000 yard mark in just the seventh game of the season and his 1,072 yards on the year rank third in school history.

Forester sophomore quarterback Jagan Cleary completed 24 of 35 passes for 186 yards with a touchdown and an interceptions on the afternoon. It was the sixth time in seven games this season that he completed at least 60 percent of his passes. Six different receivers caught at least two passes in the game. Senior wide receiver Alex Pasiewicz had six catches, including a 5-yard touchdown reception, and Cleary found freshman wideout Stanford Ellis four times for a team-high 54 yards.

Freshman linebacker John Laponte led the Lake Forest defense with nine tackles and senior safety Dan Harris added seven. Both players also had an interception, as did junior linebacker Pat McDonaugh, who added a pair of tackles for loss among his six stops.

The interception by Harris thwarted Macalester's first scoring opportunity at the Lake Forest 14-yardline. Four plays later Valdivia scampered 57 yards to the end zone for the first score of the contest.

The score remained 7-0 until the Foresters' first drive of the second quarter, which covered 71 yards in 12 plays. Cleary connected with Pasiewicz for the 5-yard touchdown, which doubled the visitors' lead.

Macalester responded with an 8-play, 70-yard touchdown drive to pull back to within seven points. 

After trading scoreless possessions, Lake Forest reached the end zone again on a 6-play, 69-yard drive which included five Cleary completions to four different receivers. Valdivia capped it off with a 12-yard touchdown run to make the score 21-7 with 47 seconds to play in the half.

After a Forester punt to open the third quarter, the Scots traveled 77 yards in 13 plays and scored on a 3-yard run to once again make it a one-possession game.

Lake Forest forced Macalester to punt on the each of the home team's next three possessions and intercepted passes to end the Scots' final two drives.

Valdivia sprinted 74 yards for a touchdown with 3:25 to play in the contest and scored from 44 yards out just 38 seconds later to clinch the victory.

The Foresters are now 5-2 overall this season and 3-2 in Midwest Conference play. Macalester fell to 5-2 overall and suffered its first conference loss in five league games on the year.

Lake Forest will host Lawrence University next Saturday at 1:00 p.m.