STROUDSBURG - Not even a 40-minute lightning delay could help the Lehighton defense slow down Stroudsburg's offensive attack.
The Mounties' two talented skill players, running back Altarique Mosley-Dew and wide received Donovan McDonald, accounted for 83 percent (257 yards) of the team's offensive output and helped lead Stroudsburg to a 35-7 Mountain Valley Conference victory over Lehighton. Their speed and quickness was unmatched by everyone else on the field and was the driving force behind the Mounties' week two win.
"Well I thought it was those two guys, and the fact that we had guys in position to make plays and we didn't close," said first-year Lehighton head coach Tom McCarroll. "Obviously (Stroudsburg) has some great athletes and they show-cased them tonight, but at the end of the day we also had guys in position to make plays and we didn't do it.
"We just can't have that. I thought we game-planned pretty well. We didn't get some of the stops when we needed to. And again, guys that we want to rely on to make plays didn't. For that most part we did, but there were some fourth downs that we let get away."
Things started out well for Lehighton. The defense forced Stroudsburg to punt on the first possession of the game, and although they almost fumbled away the punt, the Indians retained possession and set up shop at their own seven-yard-line.
From there it was all Jacen Nalesnik. The senior led his team on a 16-play, 66-yard drive deep into Stroudsburg territory and accounted for 46 yards (38 rushing, eight passing). Unfortunately for the locals, the drive stalled when a wide open third-down pass was dropped and the fourth down throw fell incomplete.
Stroudsburg made Lehighton pay on the very next play, as Mosley-Dew raced 73-yards up the gut for the game's first score.
"It was a killer," said McCarroll. "I thought we had a great plan opening up. We came out and moved the ball down the field. We had a guy wide open that dropped the ball. We didn't convert on fourth down and then they score on the first play. It was a stake in the heart.
"Our guys are young. They are learning to win and how to do things the right way. We'll learn from this."
Two possessions later Stroudsburg tacked on another touchdown when Gerald Douglas scampered in from ten yards out.
With seemingly no life on offense, Lehighton decided to try and make something happen right before halftime. That something did happen, as Tyler Crum hit Monty Thompson down the left sideline for a 64-yard score.
The enjoyment was short lived however, as Stroudsburg struck back three plays later. The Mounties returned the ensuing kick down to the Indian 35 and saw Mike Nikorak connect with McDonald for a 32-yard touchdown 14 seconds before halftime.
Following a long halftime in which there was a 40-minute lightning delay, Stroudsburg came out and forced Lehighton into three second-half turnovers while tacking on two more Douglas touchdowns. The Indians managed just six first downs and two plays of ten-plus yards in the half.
Despite the second straight loss, McCarroll refused to get down on his team. Lehighton will look to rebound next week at home against Pocono Mountain East.
"As crazy as it sounds, we did improve," McCarroll said. "The people who were at the game last week saw that we didn't get much going on offense. We were in the position to make plays tonight. It is very frustrating as a coach when you put an awful lot of time in, have guys in position to make plays and they don't finish.
"They are young kids though. They are going to make mistakes. We will get better and keep working on it. We aren't going to be discouraged. We are going to keep plugging with these kids."