ANNVILLE, Pa. - Lebanon Valley held the Stevenson football team to just 42 yards rushing and 1-of-12 on third-down conversions while forcing five turnovers as the 25th-ranked Dutchmen clinched at least a share of the Middle Atlantic Conference championship with a 30-6 victory on Saturday at Arnold Field.
The Mustangs (4-5, 3-5 MAC) attempted a season-high 41 passes, the fourth-most in school history, with sophomore John Gasparovic completing 21-of-41 for 193 yards and four interceptions in his first start since he was injured in the first quarter versus King's (Pa.) on October 19.
Lebanon Valley (8-1, 7-1 MAC) converted two of those interceptions into touchdowns, the first of which came on a Brendan Irving 34-yard run with 6:06 remaining in the first quarter to put the Dutchmen in front 10-0.
Lebanon Valley increased its lead to 17-0 at the end of the first quarter following a 31-yard touchdown pass from Brian Murphy to Jake Zeigler with just 33 seconds to play.
The Dutchmen then broke a scoreless second quarter with only 16 seconds remaining when Murphy found Joey Miller from 13 yards out to give them a 24-0 halftime lead. The touchdown capped a six-play, 19-yard drive that was set-up after Gasparovic's third interception of the half.
Stevenson received the second-half kickoff and drove 84 yards in 12 plays down to the Lebanon Valley 11-yard line, but came up just a yard short on 4th-and-4 to turn the ball over on downs.
Both teams would exhange punts on each of their next three possessions before Irving scored his second touchdown of the game, a 23-yard run to put the Dutchmen ahead 30-0 with 7:45 left in the fourth quarter.
On the ensuing possession, the Mustangs again took the ball deep into Lebanon Valley territory to the 8-yard line, but were once again stopped short on fourth down, turning the ball back over on downs with just 3:32 remaining.
However, Stevenson managed to avoid the first shutout in program history after the defense forced a fumble which led to a 7-yard touchdown return by junior Scott Lange.
The Mustangs limited the Dutchmen to just 125 yards of total offense in the second half, 53 of which came on Lebanon Valley's fourth quarter scoring drive.
Irving finished the game with 136 yards rushing and two touchdowns on 20 carries while Austin Hartman totaled 130 yards on 19 carries. As a team, the Dutchmen had 373 yards of total offense, 317 of which came on the ground.
Senior Jeromie Miller added six more catches on Saturday and now has 40 this season, 12 shy of his school record set in 2011.
Stevenson wraps-up the 2013 season at home next Saturday, November 16 when the Mustangs host Lycoming at Mustang Stadium beginning at 1:00 p.m., on Senior Day. Prior to the game, the team will honor two managers and nine players, including Miller, Max Wilson, Charlie Cornell, Marlon McLain, Nigel Stanford, Tre'von Wilks, Alphonso Mayo, David Wright and Byron Barnes.