Lackawanna Trail wasted no time, scoring two touchdowns on its first three offensive plays en route to a 55-7 victory over Holy Cross in a Lackawanna Football Conference Division IV game Friday night.

It was the Crusaders’ first game since Oct. 26, 2018 — also a loss to Trail. Holy Cross suspended its program last year because of a dwindling roster size.

After Trail stopped the Holy Cross offense on a fourth and 1, Ray Melnikoff slammed through the middle of the Crusaders’ defense then bounced outside for a 33-yard touchdown run on the Lions’ first offensive play and a 7-0 lead.

On their second possession, it took the Lions two plays to score with Melnikoff running this one in from 17 yards out and a 13-0 lead.

Melnikoff had three total touchdown runs and 83 rushing yards in one half of play.

In the second quarter, a high snap sailed over the punter’s head, giving Lackawanna Trail possession at the Holy Cross 22. Two plays later, Melnikoff scored his third and final touchdown of the night which gave the Lions a 27-0 lead.

Holy Cross gave the ball back to the Lions on a fumbled center exchange, setting up Trail at the Crusaders 33. Three plays later, Kody Cresswell extended the lead to 34-0 with a 5-yard touchdown run.

Just before the half, Lackawanna Trail blocked a punt, Evan Litwin scooped it up and ran 20 yards for a 41-0 lead with 29 seconds to play.

Trail scored on all five of its first-half possessions, which all started inside Holy Cross territory thanks to numerous turnovers and mistakes.

Trail scored its final touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter when Hunter Patterson sliced through the defense for a 22-yard touchdown run and a 55-0 lead.

On the ensuing kickoff, Holy Cross got a 39-yard return from Logan Tierney to set the Crusaders up at the Lions 35. It was the first and only time Holy Cross would get into Trail territory. Aided by a personal foul penalty, they capitalized and avoided the shutout when Wyett Walchak dove for a 2-yard touchdown to put the Crusaders on the board.

The Lackawanna Trail defense was swarming the Crusaders all night, holding Holy Cross to 37 total yards of offense, 20 of which came on their lone scoring drive in the 4th quarter.

Trail 55, Holy Cross 7

Holy Cross 0 0 0 7 7

Lackawanna Trail 13 28 7 7 55

First quarter

LT — Melnikoff 33 run (Melnikoff kick). 9:12

LT — Melnikoff 17 run (kick failed). 6:20

Second quarter

LT — Rozanski 15 pass from Lisk (Melnikoff kick). 8:10

LT — Melnikoff 5 run (Melnikoff kick). 5:18

LT — Crestwell 3 run (Melnikoff kick). 4:12

LT — Litwin 20 blocked punt return (Melnikoff kick). :29

Third quarter

LT — Gumble 9 pass from Jervis (Lewis kick). 6:25

Fourth quarter

LT — Patterson 22 run (Lewis kick). 11:44

HC — Walchak 2 run (Walchak kick). 6:48

Team statistics


First Downs 4 13

Rush-Att-Yards 21-26 30-271

Comp-Att-Int 2-4-0 3-3-0

Passing Yards 11 41

Total Yards 37 312

Punts-Average 2-30.0 0-0.0

Fumbles-Lost 7-2 1-0

Penalties-Yards 2-15 3-44

Individual statistics

Rushing: HC – B.Ludovici 9-19; W.Walchak 6-11, 1 TD; C.Moczulski 2-2; S.Herbert 1-(-1); G.Grems 2-(-2); Z.Luciani 1-(-3). LT – R.Melnikoff 7-83, 3 TDs; H.Patterson 3-42, 1 TD; L.Gumble 5-39; K.Cresswell 3-29, 1 TD; D.Klinges 1-29; T.Rozanski 2-21; D.Deacon 2-16; J.Houser 2-7; O.Lisk 1-2; J.Ella 1-1; X. Toward 1-1; D.Le 2-1.

Passing: HC – S.Herbert 2-4-0, 11. LT – O.Lisk 2-2-0, 32, 1 TD; S.Jervis 1-1-0, 9, 1 TD.

Receiving: HC – B.Ludovici 2-11. LT – E.Litwin 1-17; T.Rozanski 1-15; L.Gumble 1-9, 1 TD.

Contact the writer:; 570-348-9125;

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