Sep 05, 2009 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
As the schedule falls, rivals Hamilton and Morrisville-Eaton will square off on the football field this Friday night in the second game of the season.
Both will arrive quite happy, thanks to the way they applied on opening night.
Hamilton turned to Coley Graham, whose ability on the ground and the air led to 28 unanswered points in the first half and a 35-15 romp over Sherburne-Earlville.
Meanwhile, M-E exploited all kinds of mistakes from West Canada Valley and rode Joey VanDee’s spectacular returns to a 31-13 victory over the Indians.
The Emerald Knights and Warriors both missed the playoffs in 2008, something that becomes less likely this fall, with the Class D playoffs doubled from eight teams to 16 – and a six-game regular season, adding to early urgency.
Feeling that urgency, Hamilton took exactly two plays to take control against Sherburne-Earlville, who hails from the Class C South division.
From his own 38-yard line, Graham broke out of the pocket and took off on a 62-yard touchdown run, quickly giving the Emerald Knights a 7-0 lead.
A second Hamilton possession led to a second Graham TD, this one a seven-yard run, and it was 14-0 going into the second period.
Proving more patient, Graham led the Emerald Knights on a 14-play march, ending with James Smith scoring on a one-yard plunge. Smith also kicked the extra point, eventually going five-for-five on PAT’s for the night.
Moments after John Andrzejek recovered a Marauders fumble, Graham struck again – through the air, 77 yards to Justin Betts, and it was 28-0 at the break.
From there, the Emerald Knights cruised home, getting one more TD on a 13-yard strike from Graham to Nic Barker.
As this was going on, Morrisville-Eaton defended its home turf. The Warriors didn’t have the ball for large portions of the first half against West Canada Valley – yet still led 14-0 at intermission.
Three different times, the Indians fumbled the ball, and M-E recovered each time – twice by Christian Woodcock, once by Ben Thomas.
Thomas, also the Warriors’ quarterback, found Jamie Maciag for a 21-yard TD strike to get M-E on the board in the first quarter.
That margin doubled when, in the second quarter, Joey VanDee took a punt near midfield and streaked 52 yards to the other end zone.
And VanDee was far from done. Accepting the second-half kickoff at his own 20, VanDee found a hole and didn’t stop until he had gone 80 yards through WCV’s coverage teams for another touchdown
Just as an encore, VanDee earned a 30-yard TD run late in the period. Thomas, who was four-for-four on extra points, added a 20-yard field goal in the fourth quarter.