Small division football was the theme on Saturday night at Fairfield Union high school, and the match-up was between league rivals Lancaster Fisher Catholic and the Newark Catholic Green Wave. Fisher Catholic had beaten the Green Wave the last two times the two had squared off. This game was the biggest of the three being it was a playoff game where the loser went home, while the Winners moved on to round three.
On the first play of the game Trent (NO MORE Mr. NICE GUY) Nutter took off on a nine-yard gain. This was in large part because of the job the offensive line did on the play. Zach(THE PIT BULL) McPherson had his number called with 10.50 left on the clock, but he gained little as Matt Lott and Trent Thacker collapsed to put a big stick on him. Newark Catholic would be forced to punt a short time later.
With Pat Turner out with what was reported on the radio a shoulder injury the Irish would need to find another back to take his place, and with 9.40 left in the opening quarter it appeared they had their answer, when Charlie Barrows eluded several would be tacklers as he gained fourteen yards on the play. The drive ended when Greg Connell missed a wide opened Adam Snyder.
With the aid of a Ryan (THE HEAD HUNTER)Dolan Block Keane (THE TOUCHDOWN MAKER)Carpenter had a nice punt return, which brought the many Green Wave fans to their feet. Zach(THE PIT BULL) McPherson would go up the middle for eighteen yards as his offensive line opened up a huge hole for him to run through. The line did an outstanding job on the drive. On play number eight of the drive Mason Michelson and John McGrath opened up another large hole and The Pit Bull eased into the end zone, after David(SURE THING)Tung hot the point after the Green Wave had a 7-0 lead, with 4.31 left on the clock.
The Green Wave defense got a big play when Jarret Creely stopped Connell for a short gain, after it looked like the talented quarterback had a chance for a big gain. Then with 1.29 left in the quarter Marcus(BIG PLAY)Wing dove to break up a Connell pass forcing the Irish to again punt the ball.
The second quarter would see the Green Wave get another big play from its defense when Michael (NORTH STAR) Taylor, Jarret Creely and Marshall Carpenter teamed up to sack Connell for a six-yard loss. Then with 4.38 left in the half Michael (NORTH STAR) Taylor and Michael Thissen sacked Connell. The Newark Catholic defensive line along with its offensive line played their best game as a unit that I have seen them play to date. On offense the Green Wave got a nice throw and catch from Taylor to David Frush that kept a drive alive. The teams would go into the locker rooms with the score still 7-0 Newark Catholic
The second half got started with a bang for the Green Wave. It started on the kickoff, with the kickoff team holding Fisher Catholic to little gain. Then Ryan (THE HEAD HUNTER)Dolan rushed in and forced a fumble that teammate Jarret Creely scooped up and raced thirteen yards for the score. Sure Thing came in and added the point after giving the Green Wave a 14-0 lead, and leaving the Fisher Catholic fans silent.
The Green Wave defense came up big when Alex Campolo stayed home and put a big time hit on a Fisher running back forcing a punt. On the punt The Touchdown Maker took the ball and went down the sideline but a block in the back brought the ball way back. Facing a third and six, The Touchdown Maker picked up the first down keeping the drive alive. The offensive line once again stood tall and proud on this play making it easy for the runner to move the chains. The drive would stall and another punt followed.
Six minutes and ten seconds remained in the third quarter and Fisher got a huge play from Connell, who dropped back to pass and found Juan Toro wide open and if not for a nice play by Campolo Toro would have scored, but he was stopped inside the five. Connell would run it in from four yards out on an option keeper, where he faked the ball to his back and then danced in easily for the score. The point after was blocked by THE PIT BULL keeping the score at 14-6.
The Irish would have the ball with 4.00 left on the third quarter clock when Connell tried to take off on the run but John McGrath planted him into the grass for no gain. Connell would pick up a first down with a nice run with 3.16 left in the quarter, if not for Campolo the play would have gone for a lot more. Connell would hook up with Charlie Barrows to get the ball down to the Green Wave three yard line, and from there the talented quarterback scored on what was almost identical to the play that got them six the first time. The score came on a fourth down call. The Irish would go for two following the score, but be denied when Marcus (BIG PLAY)Wing sacked Connell leaving the score at 14-12 Green Wave, with 1.04 showing on the clock.
The NEWARK CATHOLIC FAN PLAY OF THE GAME came on the last play of the third quarter. North Star dropped back looked down field and let go of a beautiful pass that found The Touchdown maker who was stopped at the Irish one yard line. The five play seventy four yard drive came to a close when The Pit Bull scored from a yard out. Sure Thing added the point after giving the Green Wave a 21-12 lead, with 11.43 remaining in the game and the season for one of these outstanding teams.
Trent (NO MORE Mr. NICE GUY) Nutter just missed making a spectacular one handed interception with 11.11 seconds remaining in the contest. With 6.52 left Michael Vajen made the best catch of the game for the Irish but a holding call nullified the catch. The refs were horrible both ways, but on the other hand one could say they were consistent. 5.14 remained in the game when Nutter nearly made a pick on a play where he had nice coverage on his man.
The Green Wave had the ball with 4.47 left when Nutter plowed up field for a sixteen-yard gain to the Irish fifteen. The Irish defense would stiffen and make the Green Wave attempt a 31-yard Field Goal. 3.25 showed on the clock when Sure Thing trotted onto the field. The snap was right on the money, the hold was as needed and boom the kick went high into the air and the refs raised their arms signaling good. The score now was 24-12 Green Wave and sadly many of the Fisher fans started heading for the parking lot.
Connell and the Irish unlike many of their fans would not give up and with 3.30 left he found Juan Tor for a big first down. 2.06 Showed on the clock when arcus(FUTURE STAR) Baker galloped onto the field and took his slot at linebacker. Connell barked out the signals and after the snap Baker on what looked to be a delayed rushed took off like a bullet fired from a big gun in the direction of the talented quarterback. Connell would release the ball right as Baker hit him causing the ball to be a little off target and into the arms of Marshall Carpenter of the Green Wave. Nutter would muscle his way to a first down with 30 seconds left in the game, and then Elwell took a knee ending playoff victory number fifty six for the Green Wave
LANCASTER FISHER CATHOLIC
14-26 PASSING 1 INT