The Fort Lewis College defense was truly beat, and the early-season struggles for the offense continued Saturday night in Grand Junction.
No. 11 Colorado Mesa cruised to a 40-14 victory against the Skyhawks. The Mavericks (4-0, 4-0 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) led 40-0 before surrendering two late scores to the Skyhawks with several reserve players getting time on the field.
FLC (1-3, 1-3 RMAC) turned over the ball twice in Colorado Mesa territory in the first half and trailed 19-0 going into the locker room. The Mavericks outscored the Skyhawks 21-0 in the third quarter to put the game away.
Eystin Salum and Virnel Moon torched the Skyhawks. Salum passed for 212 yards and two TDs, both to Moon, who finished with 134 yards on six receptions. Moon’s second TD catch was a jump ball in the end zone, and FLC’s Donell Pleasant III nearly had his third interception in as many games, but Moon came down with the ball for the score.
Salum also led the game in rushing with 164 yards and one touchdown. Jeremy Hawkins and Brett Ojiyi each had one rushing TD for the Mavericks. David Tann, the reigning RMAC Offensive Player of the Week, rushed for 58 yards on 12 attempts.
Ryan Sheehan opened the scoring for the Mavericks. He made a 27-yard field goal with 4:16 to play in the first quarter. He gave the Mavericks a 6-0 lead with 12:36 to play in the second quarter with an impressive 51-yard field goal.
Bo Coleman finished with 132 yards passing for the Skyhawks before backup Jake Lowry saw time in the second half. Tyler Telphy rushed for 137 yards and 1 TD for the Skyhawks on 23 carries. Lowry also rushed for a score and had 34 rushing yards on two attempts.
Arealous Hughes hauled in three passes for 54 yards for FLC, while Mason Hatton had 52 receiving yards on eight receptions.
Saturday night’s game was the first of a tough three-game road trip for the Skyhawks, who will visit Colorado School of Mines (2-2, 2-2 RMAC) at noon Saturday in Golden.