Since taking a season-opening defeat to Homer, the Marcellus football team has rattled off three consecutive victories and climbed the Class B West division standings.
The Mustangs made it three in a row Friday night by traveling to Cortland and scoring 28 unanswered points in the first half on the way to handling the Purple Tigers 49-6.
Even though it was facing a Cortland side off to an 0-3 start, Marcellus did not take the assignment lightly, and moved out in front when Nick Patterson Jr. hit Matt Reich on a 39-yard touchdown pass. Reich also earned a two-point conversion as Kyle Denka’s two-yard scoring run and Natalie Clere’s extra point made it 15-0.
During the second period, the Mustangs continued to ease its way through the Purple Tigers’ defense. Two scoring drives led to short Patterson TD passes – six yards to Liam Tierney, then eight yards to Conner Wixson.
With a big lead, Marcellus could afford one defensive lapse, which it had in the third quarter when Cortland’s Brandon Ludwig found George Hines on a 76-yard scoring strike.
Amid that, the Mustangs scored three more times on short TD runs, with three different players – Mike Licamele, Chris Hyatt and Brayton Johnson – earning those points.
Patterson completed 10 of 16 passes for 177 yards, with Reich getting 101 receiving yards on just three catches. Johnson, who replaced Patterson late in the game, threw six passes, completing four of them for 86 yards.
Not far away, Westhill was taking its own shot at Homer, but the state no. 4-ranked Trojans proved far too tough, keeping the Warriors off the board in a 40-0 decision.
Tucker O’Donnell sent Homer on its way with a first-quarter 45-yard scoring pass to Dominic Natale. Lars Roos added a 15-yard scoring run by the end of the period.
During the Trojans’ 20-point second-quarter spurt, O’Donnell threw two more scoring passes – 25 yards to Stephen Walter, three yards to Justin Wainwright.
Meanwhile, Roos paced Homer’s ground attack, gaining 139 yards on 16 carries and adding two more TD’s to the one he had early in the game. Marcus Welch led the Warriors with 16 carries for 61 yards.
On Saturday at Nottingham High School, Solvay had a chance to greatly improve its chances at a first sectional playoff berth in a decade, but lost, 22-18, to Institute of Technology Central.