Sep 29, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Much of the Cazenovia football team’s efforts in Saturday’s game against Mexico at Buckley-Volo Field was centered around getting the key work done quickly, and then conserving both energy and manpower for a much bigger battle ahead.
By scoring 39 points in the first quarter against the winless Tigers, the state Class B no. 4-ranked Lakers ended the competitive phase quite early, and then breezed to a 46-7 victory while most of its key players sat the entire second half.
And this sets up, for the 4-0 Lakers, the biggest game of the regular season – next Saturday’s home clash with fellow unbeaten Oneida. En route to its own 4-0 start, the Indians have outscored its opponents by a combined margin of 160-34.
Of course, Oneida has experienced nothing close to what Cazenovia did on Sept. 19, falling behind 28-7 at Marcellus before rallying for a 43-35 victory. Remembering how bad things started in that game, the Lakers wanted nothing close to that stress against an overmatched Mexico side.
It took less than two minutes for Cazenovia to get on the board with Andrew Vogl’s 56-yard touchdown run. Then Kevin Hopsicker found Noah King open in the end zone from 23 yards out on the Lakers’ next possession, making it 13-0.
A short Mexico punt led to a short field and another Cazenovia TD, Mike Nourse scoring from 19 yards out, and it was 20-0, but the Lakers weren’t done yet in the period.
Billy Rankin intercepted Josh Colon’s pass and returned it to the Mexico 10, and Vogl went seven yards for his second TD, so it was 27-0, and the game wasn’t even seven minutes old.
Keaton Ackerman, who already had converted three of four extra points, picked off Colon at the Tigers’ 37 and returned it all the way, 63 yards for the Lakers’ fifth TD of the quarter. Vogl, just before the period ended, broke loose from midfield for a 52-yard TD dash.
Mostly a spectator in this scoring deluge, Hopsicker joined in by taking an option run 62 yards for six more points early in the second quarter. Remarkably, the Lakers had picked up 46 points in less than 14 minutes of game time.
And it would not score again, the Lakers sitting its starters throughout the second half as Collin Hayes’ one-yard TD run against the Cazenovia second-string defense got Mexico on the board.
By making sure it did not look ahead to Oneida, the Lakers got the sharp work, and ample rest, it needed before it met Oneida with Class B East supremacy at stake.
Back on Friday, Chittenango fell to 1-3 on the season, going to Central Valley Academy and playing a poor first half in a 44-32 defeat to the Thunder.
The Bears’ run defense, which allowed 450 yards to Homer a week earlier, got exposed again thanks to CVA’s powerful ground attack during a 22-0 first-quarter blitz.
Mykel Farley, scoring from 22 yards out, gave the Thunder an 8-0 lead. Then Tyler Brown, back from an ankle injury suffered in the Sept. 14 game at Cazenovia, broke loose for long TD runs of 61 and 35 yards, putting the Bears in early trouble.
Fighting back in the second quarter, Chittenango had Connor Mills score on a one-yard plunge and a two-point pass to Will Strodel, and added Cory Benn’s 13-yard TD pass to Matt Cretaro.
Still, the Bears trailed 36-16 at halftime because CVA kept running wild, Farley adding his second and third touchdowns of the night on runs of 64 and 21 yards.
To its credit, Chittenango clamped down in the second half, and did get two more TD’s thanks to Cretaro’s 12-yard run and Benn’s five-yard pass to Jordan Sass. But Travis Mead’s two-yard scoring run in the fourth quarter helped the Thunder hang on.
This Friday night, the Bears welcome 3-1 Marcellus, desperately needing a win to improve its post-season chances.
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