Gold Wins Intrasquad Spring Game, 14-7

It was football weather, so the CSU Rams decided to play a real football game on Saturday. They closed out a highly successful spring practice season with a well played game that saw the Gold team - led by Quarterback Bradlee Van Pelt - top the Green squad 14-7 in the team's annual spring football game at Hughes Stadium.

Van Pelt, who made giant strides this spring, rushed for 44 yards and threw for 117 yards and a first quarter touchdown. The game was played in chilly, windy weather at Hughes Stadium, and as a result, head coach Sonny Lubick ended the game following three quarters of play. Reserve quarterback Justin Holland, a redshirt freshman from Bear Creek High in Lakewood, Colo., drove his team down the field and nearly sent the game into overtime.

On second and goal at the Gold team's three-yard-line, Holland dropped to pass and scrambled out of the pocket, but was stopped near the goal line by linebacker Jeff Flora to preserve the 14-7 victory.

"I love the way the players competed, the way we played as a team," said Lubick following the game.

Early, it seemed as though the game would be an offensive showcase. Van Pelt led the Gold team on a 13-play, 87-yard scoring drive on the team's first offensive possession, hitting tight end James Sondrup on a nine-yard scoring pass to cap the drive. Holland took his Green squad down the field on a six-play, 70-yard touchdown drive on the ensuing possession to tie the score. Holland, who finished the game by completing 14 of 25 passes for 167 yards, found tight end Joel Dreessen on a 42-yard gain down the middle of the field to set up Cecil Sapp's one-yard touchdown that tied the score. Dreessen finished the day with seven receptions for 86 yards.

Sapp, who missed last year after having a benign tumor removed from his heel, was back in top form though his duty was limited Saturday. He rushed twice for five yards and caught one pass for a 29-yard game.

"Cecil looked good," said Lubick. "He looks strong, and showed a bit of speed. He caught that swing pass and split the defense."

Henri Childs, the team's leading rusher a year ago, scored the game-wining touchdown in the second quarter on an eight-yard run set up by linebacker Eric Pauly's interception of a Holland pass that he ran back to the one-yard-line. Two plays later, Childs scored a touchdown. Childs led all rushers with 58 yards on 12 carries.

Lubick was equally happy with the play of the defense. Pauly led all players with eight tackles, while Flora had six.

"The defense, I thought, played very well. We're happy with the position changes that we made. We know that we have some work to do when we come back in the fall, but overall, I was pleased," said Lubick.

David Vickers, the Ram's leading tackler from 2000 when he played middle linebacker, has made a smooth transition to strong safety, and could start fall camp on top of the depth chart. Equally impressive are the moves of former running back Rashaan Sanders to free safety and former linebacker Andre Sommersell to the defensive line. All three could begin the 2002 season as starters.

Rucker Suspended
While there were no major injuries in the game, the Rams may begin the fall camp without a player they were counting on. Director of Athletics Jeffrey Hathaway announced Saturday that linebacker Frostee Rucker has been suspended from the team pending an investigation on charges of sexual assault. The charges stem from an incident involving a female acquaintance early Sunday morning, April 14. He was also charged with indecent exposure in a separate incident.

"While we cannot comment on any pending judicial matter, it is important to note that the university views these charges very seriously," Hathaway said.

In accordance with standard university procedure for all students in similar cases, Rucker has been removed from the residence hall. Under federal privacy regulations, university officials are prohibited from commenting further on the specific issues of the case. (CSU-SID contributed to this story.)

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