One drive in particular really exemplified Franklin & Marshall’s offensive plan of attack Saturday.
It came early in the second quarter shortly after a Moravian touchdown. From their own 34, the Diplomats ran eight straight plays to running back Joe Hartley-Vittoria, who covered 51 yards to the Greyhounds’ 15.
From there, fellow Diplomats back Keshon Farmer took care of the rest, bursting through the line for a touchdown on the next play.
Farmer went on to score four times and Hartley-Vittoria added another as F&M pounded Moravian 40-6 in a homecoming win at rain-soaked Shadek Stadium.
“We felt we had to run the football,” F&M coach John Troxell said. “It’s a heck of a win because that’s a good football team we beat.”
Hartley-Vittoria finished with 130 yards on 21 carries, while Farmer picked up 94 on 18 rushes as the Diplomats (5-2 Centennial Conference, 6-2 overall) racked up 213 rushing yards and 405 yards overall.
“I feel like we’re the best duo in the conference,” said Farmer, who also caught a pass for 54 yards. “Joe’s a sophomore and I’m a freshman so a lot of people are going to see us for the next three years.”
After Moravian (4-3, 5-3) scored its lone touchdown, cutting the F&M lead to 12-6 in the opening minute of the second quarter, Farmer scored his four touchdowns (15, 2, 1 and 32 yards) as the Diplomats posted 28 unanswered points to close out the game.
“We knew when we recruited him that he’s an explosive player that could make us better,” Troxell said. “To find a kid with that kind of speed at this level, there are not a lot of people that can match that speed. We feel he can be one of the better ones to ever come through here.”
The two have combined for 1,025 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns this season.
“He’s the sauce and I’m the meatball,” Hartley-Vittoria said. “We’re just trying to get the win. When he scores, I score and when I score, he scores.”
Diplomats quarterback Tanner Erisman, a Penn Manor grad, completed 9 of 15 passes for 192 yards. He started the scoring with a 29-yard touchdown pass to K.J. Pretty with 8:29 left in the first quarter.
While the dynamic running duo was running through Moravian, the F&M defense was putting together its best performance of the season.
The F&M defense was especially dominant in the second half, holding Moravian to three first downs and 50 total yards. For the game, the Greyhounds were held to eight first downs and 187 yards of total offense.
They came to town averaging 23.7 points and 349 yards per game.
“I don’t even know what to say about them,” Troxell said of the defense. “They really shut them down. Playing great defense is what we want to do here. When you can give the ball back to the offense, that’s why you end up winning 40-6.”