It has been exactly 145 days since the Shippensburg University football team stepped onto SU Student Association Field at Seth Grove Stadium to play a football game. That game left a sour taste in the Raiders’ mouths as they walked off the field after a dismal 42–21 loss to the Indiana University of Pennsylvania on the last game of the season.
On Saturday, April 12 the Raiders will not get a chance to avenge that loss, but they will get the next best thing — an opportunity to play in an atmosphere as close as it gets to the regular season. The annual spring game will feature game-like conditions, such as a full officiating crew, a running clock, live performance by the Red Raider Marching Band and statistics will be kept.
Last season’s spring game saw a Red squad shut out the White squad 44–0, a less than impressive game for then-starting quarterback Zach Zulli.
The Raiders have had 12 practices so far this spring, the first one held on March 25, and will have two after the spring game before the end of the spring season.
SU has been working on all aspects of its game this spring, including weight lifting during the winter months.
Players to watch
Chris Lawshe – Was primary backup in 2013 season to Zulli. Played in all 11 games, threw for 111 yards while rushing for 255 and four touchdowns. Lawshe will run most of the plays with the first team squad. The sophomore dominated in the spring game last season, throwing for 402 yards on 32-of-55 passing and four touchdowns.
Trevor Harman – Raiders’ No. 1 receiver in 2013, recorded 22 touchdown receptions, accumulated 1,421 receiving yards (124.2 average per game) and 105 receptions. Harman struggled in last season’s spring game, recording just six catches for 74 yards.
Blair Brooks – Raiders go to running back during 2013. Finished the season with 908 total rushing yards (90.8 average per game) to go along with his six rushing touchdowns. Brooks averaged a team-high 6.8 rushing yards per carry in 2013. Last year’s spring game was a tough one for the Conestoga High School graduate as he totaled just 41 yards on 10 carries.
Cortlin Dell – Had a breakout season for the Raiders in 2013. Dell led the team in total tackles (84) and solo tackles (55). Dell recorded three tackles in last season’s Red-White game, one solo tackle and two assists. The sophomore will be a big part of the Raiders defense in this season game and in the 2014 season.
Brian Sourber – Ranked second in total tackles (79) in 2013, five behind Dell. Sourber was a big part of the Raiders’ defensive success last year. Notched 44 solo tackles while recording 35 assists, the most on the SU squad. The junior struggled in the spring game last season, recording just two total tackles. This season, Sourber will be another keystone part of the SU defense with the absence of Jake Metz due to graduation.
The Red-White game is set to start at 1 p.m., admission is free to all fans and tailgating will be permitted.