Storm Chasers

GVL Archive
GVSU offense gets a first down on Lake Erie defense during the last match-up.

GVL Archives

GVL Archive GVSU offense gets a first down on Lake Erie defense during the last match-up.

Brady Fredericksen

Fresh off its first road triumph of the season, the Grand Valley State University football team will look to keep the good times going this weekend at Lake Erie College.

The Lakers (3-2, 2-2 GLIAC) are coming off a commanding 42-7 victory over Northern Michigan University, and after putting together their best game of the season on both offense and defense, will look to sustain that in Saturday’s game against the Storm (1-5, 0-5 GLIAC).

“How we come to practice with the approach is what we need to build and carry things forward,” said GVSU head coach Matt Mitchell. “If you have proper approach in meetings, you’re going to know how to execute it and if you have proper approach to individual ball skills you’re going to make those plays. So, I just think your mindset and how you approach meetings and practice is very critical to our success.”

Senior linebacker Brad Thomas, who recorded three tackles in last week’s win, said the focus is there, and the game will be a matter of executing against the Storm’s spread offense.

“It feels good to get a road win, but that week’s over and we have to look forward,” said Howard, the team’s leading tackler at 40. “We have to come out, and know what we have to do assignment wise, and execute it.”

The Lakers displayed that execution last week when the defense intercepted four Northern Michigan passes. Offensively, sophomore quarterback Heath Parling’s five touchdown passes, four to senior wideout Jovonne Augustus, led the Lakers.

Lake Erie enters the game allowing 40.8 points per game, but despite their record, the team has played well at times this season. The Storm were within a touchdown in the third quarter against No. 9 Wayne State University last week and fell by only nine points against Hillsdale in Week 4.

Mitchell and the team expect the Storm to come out strong at home, and it will be the team’s ability to bring that approach from practice to the game that decides how the action goes.

“We just have to continue what we did last week in practice – keeping up that same intensity and keeping that same defensive mentality that we’ve had,” said senior defensive end Andre Thomas. “We come out to practice every day, and everybody on defense is running to the ball – that’s how we work on that.”

To go with their upset attempts this season, Lake Erie has weapons on offense to do damage. In last year’s game against GVSU, the Storm – then 0-6 – hung with the then-No. 1 ranked Lakers throughout the first half, trailing by only four points at halftime.

After taking on Northern Michigan’s dual-threat quarterback Carter Kopach last week, the team is prepared for more this week with Lake Erie signal caller Sean Bedevelsky.

The four-year starter leads the Storm in both passing and rushing and will be the second of three, Ferris State University quarterback Tom Schneider being the third, dual-threat quarterbacks the Lakers will face in this current stretch.

“We’ve got three senior quarterbacks right in a row who are runners and throwers, which I guess is good from the standpoint that we’re going to get into the same mindset,” Mitchell said. “And I’m not sure out of those three guys that I wouldn’t take Bedevelsky over the other two – he can throw it really well, and he really understands what’s going on. He has a lot of experience, nothings going to phase him and that’s scary.”

Along with Bedevelsky, Lake Erie will look to get its running game going with a true freshman. In his first career start last week, running back Rod Smith ran for 87 yards on 17 carries against a Wayne State defense that ranks No. 2 in the GLIAC in rushing defense.

“In their wide receiver and running back positions, they put a lot of different kids in there, and I’m sure it’s the type of situation where they haven’t won a game and they’re trying too find answers,” Mitchell said. “We saw him on tape, and he’s not a big kid, but he’s got a burst so we just have to be able to adjust to that.”

The Lakers will take the field at 7 p.m. on Saturday. Fans looking to hear the action can listen on 107.9 WMUS.

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