Sep 29, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
What Bishop Ludden’s football team hoped, going into last Friday’s game against visiting Skaneateles, was that the enthusiasm of a home crowd and the excitement of playing on television would translate into an upset over the defending Section III Class C champions.
And the Gaelic Knights would have great moments – just not enough of them, though, as the Lakers, pulling away in the second half, prevailed by a score of 26-12 to drop Ludden’s record on the season to 1-3.
Each of the last two years, it was the Gaelic Knights that gave the Lakers as much trouble as anyone in C West, including a pair of 2012 meetings where Skaneateles had to come from behind to win the season opener, and then top Ludden again in the Section III Class C-1 title game.
Stakes were slightly smaller here, but the Lakers still found itself in trouble early, unable to generate any sort of chances against Ludden’s defense.
Worse yet, the Gaelic Knights struck a big play to go in front 6-0, Conlan McGuire throwing deep and finding Cameron Beauford for a 70-yard touchdown before the extra point was missed.
It took until the second quarter for Skaneateles to get on the board. Devin Callahan, making his second consecutive start at quarterback in place of the injured Tyler Parr, mixed things up in the first scoring drive that led to Cameron Mercado’s three-yard TD run and Colin Alexander’s go-ahead PAT.
Leading 7-6, the Lakers drove again, and when Callahan threw downfield and found Connor Hill for a 35-yard scoring pass, that, plus Alexander’s PAT, gave Skaneateles a 14-6 lead.
Ludden wasn’t done with big plays, though, as Donovan Card broke loose through the Laker secondary on a 65-yard sprint to the end zone. When the tying two-point try was stopped, Skaneateles was still in front, 14-12, going to halftime.
What made the difference, in the second half, was that the Lakers’ defense took Ludden out of its rhythms, constantly making stops and forcing punts. And it was fitting that the game’s last points was a fourth-quarter defensive safety.
Given ample time to pull clear, Skaneateles did so, as Alexander made a 30-yard field goal to make it 17-12, and Callahan followed up with his biggest play of the night, a 57-yard strike to Hill.
Callahan threw 31 passes, completing 20 of them for 277 yards. True, Hill got the TD’s and 112 yards on six grabs, but Collin Jones was just as valuable, gaining 130 yards off eight receptions. Matt Lee offered the Lakers a ground game too, with 16 carries for 80 yards.
Jordan-Elbridge would meet the same fate against ITC that Ludden did in a 41-0 loss on Sept. 6, not getting on the scoreboard against that other group of Eagles as it lost by a 38-0 margin.
All of ITC’s points came in the first three quarters, with DeLee Williams scoring on an 80-yard run in the first quarter to set the tone.
Then Josh Thomas took over, catching a 37-yard TD pass from Tyler Carbonaro for one score, running 15 yards for another and throwing 50 yards to Sultani Campbell for a third TD, all to make it 25-0 at halftime. ITC added to the big plays in the third quarter as Carbonaro threw a 68-yard TD pass to Darren Rosa, and Keenan Scott ran 61 yards for six more points.
Saddled with a three-game losing streak, J-E hopes to break it Friday at Onondaga, just before Ludden plays Hannibal Saturday at Fulton, since the Warriors are repairing its home field.