The win keeps Kutztown (6-2, 4-1 PSAC East) tied for first place in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Eastern Division, setting up a pivotal homecoming matchup next weekend, Oct. 28, at Andre Reed Stadium against Shippensburg University (7-1, 4-1). Kickoff is 4:05 p.m.
Kutztown only had three drives not end in touchdowns. The win marked KU’s 10th-straight win vs. Lock Haven.
Redshirt-freshman running back Evan Culver (Hellertown, Pa./Saucon Valley) ran for a season-high 147 yards and scored three touchdowns – all in the first half. He took 17 of Kutztown’s 45 carries and posted two rushing touchdowns and one receiving touchdown. He ran for a one-yard touchdown on fourth-down late in the first quarter, caught a 19-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter, and ran for a 12-yard touchdown late in the half.
Quarterback Collin DiGalbo (Secane, Pa./Monsignor Bonner) threw for 244 yards and three touchdowns in 3+ quarters of action. He completed 19-of-28 passes, moving into eighth in school history with 302 career completions, seventh in school history with 3,519 passing yards and tied for sixth in school history with 29 touchdown passes.
He was 1-of-3 KU quarterbacks to play, none of whom were sacked.
Senior Josh Lee (Willow Grove, Pa./Abington (Thaddeus Stevens))caught two second-half touchdown passes. He finished with three catches for 27 yards.
Jack Pilkerton (La Plata, Md./La Plata (Golden West)) opened the scoring for Kutztown with a 15-yard touchdown catch on the first drive of the game. It marked Pilkerton’s second touchdown catch of the season, marking KU’s first tight end with multiple touchdown catches in a season since Dan Onorato in 2007.
Three more Golden Bears scored their first career touchdowns this week to push KU’s season total to 12 first-time scorers. Backup quarterback Eric Nickel (Bridgewater, N.J./Bridgewater-Raritan)connected with Lee late in the game from 16 yards. Running back Sharif Fennell Jr. (Philadelphia, Pa./West Catholic Prep) ran for a two-yard touchdown run on fourth-down late in the third quarter, but the most memorable rushing touchdown belonged to a Kutztown senior.
Kutztown senior offensive lineman Skyler Panchari (Pottsville, Pa./Blue Mountain) made a memory to last a lifetime late in the third quarter. With Kutztown driving inside the Lock Haven 5-yardline, Panchari took his first career carry and rumbled in from two yards out for his first career touchdown. It marked the first touchdown by a KU offensive lineman since Zack Yankiewicz in 2012.
The three Culver scores and the Pilkerton touchdown gave KU a 27-12 halftime lead. Lock Haven scored in the first half off a 20-yard field goal, a 13-play, 63-yard touchdown drive, and a blocked extra point returned for a touchdown.
Kutztown iced the victory with the defense forcing a Lock Haven punt coming out of halftime, and the offense responding with a 12-play, 73-yard drive capped with a 5-yard touchdown pass from DiGalbo to Lee for a 34-12 lead midway through the third quarter.
Defensively, Tajier Jefferson (East Orange, N.J./Queen of Peace)led the way with nine tackles, two for-a-loss. Safeties Shawn Turber-Ortiz (Northumberland, Pa./Shikellamy) and Jake Perry(Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin) each had eight tackles and a tackle-for-loss. As a team, Kutztown had seven tackles-for-loss.
Ahkee Cox-Cowan (Harrisburg, Pa./Harrisburg) hauled in his third interception of the year with three pass breakups.
Lock Haven quarterback Cameron Tobias was limited to 123 yards, while the Bald Eagles (1-7, 1-4) ran for 120 yards and two touchdowns.
Kutztown will look for its first four-game winning streak of the season next week, when it aims to take down the Red Raiders for the third-straight year.