'Saders survive shootout vs. Rams; 314 yards, 4 TDs for HC's Randolph.


Byline: Michael Fensom

NEW YORK - After No. 17 Holy Cross defeated Fordham, 41-27, and improved its Patriot League record to 3-0, the Crusaders' coach and quarterback were left bewildered by the game's final stat sheet.

The quarterback, Dominic Randolph, was surprised Holy Cross had called more running plays than passes, 41 compared to 35. The coach, Tom Gilmore, noticed that Fordham ran 112 plays and wondered if it was a misprint.

Considering the teams' nearly identical formula - high-octane offenses featuring superlative-defying quarterbacks - it was evident before kickoff that this game was destined to be a shootout.

But with that in mind, Gilmore's double take was justified, and so was Randolph's eagerness to keep throwing. The way these two teams were moving the ball, little could stop them from putting points on the board.

"I'm glad to get out of here with a win," Gilmore said after his team won for the seventh time in eight games. "It was nerve-racking. I'm sure Fordham is glad (Randolph) is graduating, and I know I'm glad John Skelton is, too."

Skelton, the Fordham quarterback, and Randolph were primarily responsible for the gaudy offensive numbers, showcasing their similarly dynamic styles for a handful of professional scouts.

The teams amassed 1,143 yards of offense - 627 yards for Fordham, 516 for Holy Cross. They combined to run 188 plays, and neither team attempted a punt.

Skelton set school records for attempts (67), completions (43) and yards (427). Amazingly, he did not have a touchdown pass or interception, and perhaps more amazingly, he threw 33 times in the fourth quarter alone.

He did find the end zone with his feet, though, and totaled 46 rushing yards.

Gilmore said his defense focused on limiting big plays and forcing Skelton to throw the ball short. Skelton led the Rams on seven drives of at least 10 plays, but none of them took more than 3:53 off the clock.

"Yes we were giving up a ton of yards, but was it productive?" Gilmore wondered. "The defense got its pride bruised, but I would rather win ugly than lose pretty."

Fordham's longest play, a 44-yard pass from Skelton to Jason Caldwell, ended up working in favor of the Crusaders.

With Holy Cross up, 34-13, the Rams were driving. Caldwell...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT