Lehigh Tops Lafayette in the 157th Edition of The Rivalry

The Mountain Hawks end the season on a three-game winning streak with a 17-10 win over the Leopards.

Story by

Stephen Gross

Photography by

Christa Neu

Videography by

Stephanie Veto

The Mountain Hawks began the season by dropping eight straight contests, failing to score a touchdown in the first six games. But instead of packing it in, they continued to fight. And that approach eventually paid off. 

At Goodman Stadium on Saturday, a blocked punt helped Lehigh earn a 17-10 win over Lafayette in the 157th meeting of The Rivalry and sent the Mountain Hawks into the offseason with three straight wins. The winning streak snapped a school-record 15 straight losses, dating back to 2019, and Saturday's victory ended the Leopards’ win streak in college football’s most-played rivalry at two.

"I don't know if I could be any prouder of this group of players and coaches … because of what they endured throughout this season," Lehigh head coach Tom Gilmore said. "To rebound from what we went through early in the season, and then the progression, and to finish with three wins, with a win over Lafayette to finish the season is probably one of the most special experiences that I've had as a coach.”

Lehigh players celebrate

Jack DiPietro ’24 celebrates with his teammates as he hoists the game's MVP trophy.

The game remained close—a one-score margin throughout—but Lehigh never trailed, striking first and taking a 7-0 lead on a 13-yard touchdown pass from Dante Perri ’24 to Jack DiPietro ’24, the game's MVP, as time expired in the first quarter. Lafayette tied the game on a one-yard run midway through the second quarter but the Mountain Hawks took the lead for good just a few minutes later when Johnny Foley ’23 made it 14-7 after returning a punt blocked by DiPietro for a touchdown.

A 20-yard field goal in the fourth quarter by Dylan Van Dusen ’23 capped the scoring.

"This team really is special to me because they never gave up and there were a lot of people that on the outside were basically telling them to do just that and they never did," Gilmore said. "These guys deserve a lot of credit, they weren't getting the rewards early in the season but they kept coming back and they should be applauded for that tenacity."

Click here for more coverage of the 157th edition of The Rivalry.

Story by

Stephen Gross

Photography by

Christa Neu

Videography by

Stephanie Veto

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