Chris Smith ran 17 yards for a touchdown with 4:28 left to play, giving 14th-ranked St. John Fisher a 28-24 victory over Buffalo State in an Empire 8 Conference football Saturday at Growney Stadium in Pittsford.
Smith’s TD came after the Bengals had apparently stopped the Cardinals with a sack on third-and-13 at the Fisher 40. However, offsetting penalties gave Fisher (5-0, 3-0 Empire 8) another chance and freshman quarterback Colin Fiutko completed a 20-yard pass to William Coon.
Buffalo State (2-2, 1-1 Empire 8) had taken its fourth lead of the game on an 8-yard run by Tre Jones with 10:45 left.
Fiutko passed for three touchdowns, including a 78-yarder to Coon 18 seconds into the game. Buffalo State had the next two scores, a 7-yard run by Dale Stewart (Niagara Falls) and 10 yards by Jones. Marc Montana (St. Joe’s) kicked a 41-yard field goal to give the Bengals a 17-14 lead.
Jones had 85 yards on 14 carries. Kyle Hoppy (Orchard Park), in the lineup for the first time since the season opener, completed 23 of 48 for 287 yards with three interceptions. Had Bryant had seven receptions for 75 yards and Sekret Kukaj had 10 tackles on defense.
Buffalo State outgained Fisher, 472-368, and had 26 first downs to 19 for the Cards. Three interceptions and 10 penalties for 90 yards hurt the Bengals. Fisher had no turnovers.
Lackawanna College, ranked fourth in the national junior college poll, pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 34-17 win over Erie Community College in Orchard Park. The Falcons (5-0) led only 21-17 after three quarters.
ECC (3-2) never led but closed to within four points on Jonathan Royster’s 28-yard field goal with 7:10 left in the third quarter. The Kats tied the game twice, on an 18-yard fumble return by Gary Harris in the first period and a 23-yard pass from Sam Castronova (Williamsville South) to Vincent Gregory (Amherst) in the second.