Interhall season continues with close matches
Observer Sports Staff | Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Alumni 14, Morrissey 7
By Tobias Hoonhout
Alumni and Morrissey met Sunday afternoon in a game that proved to be a tale of two halves as the defending champion Manor was downed 14-7 after a second-half comeback by Alumni.
It was a shaky start for the Manor (1-1), as senior running back Hunter White fumbled deep in his own half to give Alumni (1-1) a clear chance to score, but the Morrissey defense held firm and Alumni senior kicker Cooper Schreibeis missed a 35-yard field goal, keeping the game at 0-0.
The missed opportunity appeared as if it might come back to haunt the Dawgs, as White and the Manor offense started to dominate the run game. White scored on a 4-yard run to give the Manor the lead.
Alumni attempted to answer with junior receiver Nick Raven, who caught three straight passes for big gains, but senior quarterback Trevor Hurley threw an interception in the end zone to close the half on a low note for the Dawgs.
In the second half, it looked like Morrissey was once again going to dominate as the Manor drove deep into the red zone. Then, Alumni sophomore Charles Newell blocked Morrissey’s field goal attempt and returned it for a touchdown, giving the Dawgs life.
The shift in momentum culminated with Raven hauling in a lob from Hurley in the back of the end zone as the game wore on to give the Dawgs an unlikely win.
Alumni freshman linebacker Sean Maraghy said he was proud of the team’s effort.
“It was an awesome team performance,” Maraghy said. “We never gave up and it paid off in a big way. This team is going to do special things this year.”
The Dawgs will next be in action on Sunday at 1 p.m. when they face Duncan at Riehle Fields. Morrissey has a bye week before facing Knott on Oct. 11.
Zahm 6, Sorin 6
By Anthony Zappia
Zahm and Sorin played to a 6-6 tie Sunday in a game that was a defensive struggle to the end.
After the Sorin defense made a stand on fourth-and-goal on their own 1-yard line to thwart Zahm’s first drive, the Otters (0-0-1) proceeded to score on their first drive with a 60-yard touchdown pass to senior receiver Jake Yurek. Following a fumbled 2-point conversion attempt, Sorin had its only six points of the game.
It was not until the second half that Zahm (0-1-1) scored its lone touchdown of the game, finally cashing in on its ability to move the ball effectively. But a failed 2-point conversion attempt left the game tied at six.
With less than two minutes to go, Zahm converted on a critical red zone fourth-and-10, but Sorin came up with an interception in the end zone, effectively icing the game and ensuring a tie.
Both captains said they were able to take positives away from the result. Zahm senior captain and lineman Steve Jepeal said his team played well on both sides of the ball.
“We drove the ball well, we scored and we held them to one score,” Jepeal said.
Sorin sophomore captain and safety Matt Requet also said his team played well.
“We put some drives together,” Requet said. “The new quarterback worked well. Defensively, we kept them from getting much going.”
Zahm returns to the field on Sunday, facing St. Edward’s at Riehle Fields at 3:30 p.m. Sorin will play at Riehle Fields at the same time Sunday when the Otters face Fisher.
Stanford 14, Keough 6
By Brenna Moxley
After a slow start for both teams Sunday, Stanford bested Keough 14-6.
Both teams ended their first drives with punts, but midway through the first half, the Griffins (1-0) had a promising drive only to fall short with an interception on the 1-yard line.
Stanford sophomore quarterback Andrew Foster directed the Griffins’ next drive, and with only 15 seconds left in the half, he connected with senior receiver Danny Muldoon for the first touchdown of the game.
On its first drive of the second half, Keough (0-2) executed on multiple downs, including a 40-yard pass from junior captain and quarterback Matthew Mooney to senior wide receiver Ryan Shea. However, junior Stanford defender John Plugge helped kill Keough’s momentum by breaking up multiple passes in the end zone.
Soon after Keough’s near-misses, Stanford went 14-0 on a touchdown pass from Foster to freshman receiver Chase Jennings.
On the last drive of the game, the Kangaroos put points on the board when Mooney got the ball into the hands of sophomore Davis Lee for a touchdown.
Mooney said the difference in the game was Keough’s inability to finish drives.
“Today we started slow on offense, but we got things going in the second half,” Mooney said. “Unfortunately, a couple plays were the difference in the game, plus a couple of drives that we couldn’t finish.”
Griffins senior captain Daniel Babiak said he was happy with the win.
“We went out there and executed,” Babiak said. “However, we did have errors and we want to fix those errors and improve.”
St. Edward’s 7, Carroll 6
By Molly Murphy
St. Edward’s continued its undefeated streak Sunday when the Gentlemen beat Carroll 7-6.
St. Edward’s (2-0) scored first, completing a successful running drive that started on their own 10-yard line to go up 7-0 in the first half.
Carroll (1-1) had chances in the first half, too, putting themselves in position at the 20-yard line with two minutes to go. But St. Edward’s freshman defensive back Joe Kimlinger intercepted Carroll’s intended touchdown pass on the goal line.
Carroll was able to execute in the second half, scoring on a 33-yard pass to junior captain and receiver Anthony Vallera. The team was unable to secure the two-point conversion, though, making the score 7-6.
Carroll’s offense engineered what was almost a scoring drive in the last minute of the game, only to have their momentum ended by another St. Edward’s interception, this time by sophomore defensive back Parker Mathes.
Vallera said he was frustrated with what he perceived to be a lack of consistency.
“We could move the ball at times, but we couldn’t finish the drives,” he said. “And then we had a few turnovers that we’ve got to fix.”
St. Edward’s junior captain and lineman Phineas Andrews credited his team’s win to defensive plays like those made by Kimlinger and Mathes.
“It was our defense that won the game for us,” Andrews said.
St. Edward’s will look to continue their undefeated season next week against Zahm at 3:30 p.m. at Riehle Fields, while Carroll has a bye week.
Cavanaugh 6, Walsh 0
By Elizabeth Greason
In a battle of two strong defenses, Cavanaugh edged out Walsh in 6-0 game Sunday evening. This was Cavanaugh’s first win of the season and Walsh’s second loss in a row.
Cavanaugh (1-2) was able to overcome two early interceptions, both by Walsh (1-2) sophomore Lizzie Whiteman, and score the only points of the game right before halftime. Senior Chaos captain Katie Kaes said she was thrilled with her team’s performance and win, emphasizing the team’s progress.
“Our defense was 400 percent better than last game,” Kaes said. “We’ve had a solid set of girls showing up to everything and it really showed. Everyone knew what they were doing and put in their part.”
Junior Walsh captain Courtney Davis said she feels her team is on the brink of a breakthrough despite their last two losses.
“I think we’re going to step it up,” Davis said. “We’re getting better every single game. It’s just small improvements.”
Davis also knows the importance of building trust between players.
“I think it’s just getting the chemistry right,” Davis said. “Cavanaugh clearly had a lot of chemistry with their quarterback. We need to get to that level too.”
Cavanaugh junior Aly Anton had several game-changing plays for the Chaos, including the only touchdown reception of the day and a crucial late interception.
Cavanaugh’s first win of the year also marked the first time the Chaos had held a lead. Kaes said this made the win even more sweet.
“I like it [winning] a whole lot,” said Kaes. “It’s a lot more fun to leave the game on that note.”
Walsh will play Ryan next Sunday at 6:00 p.m. at LaBar Practice Complex, while Cavanaugh will play Lyons at the same time.
Farley 18, Pangborn 12
By Jackie Brebeck
Farley continued its winning streak by beating Pangborn 18-12 with a last-second touchdown Sunday.
Despite trailing 12-0 at halftime, Farley (2-0) persevered and made a comeback. The Finest started the second half with a long catch-and-run from sophomore receiver Katherine Koczwara. Junior quarterback Lizzy Moulton showcased her versatility by passing for one touchdown and running for two, with her final rushing touchdown coming in the closing seconds of the game.
On defense, Farley co-captain senior safety Michelle Summers caught an interception that led to the game-tying touchdown, a long pass in the fourth quarter. Senior captain and linebacker Ali Buersmeyer said she was especially proud of how the defense adjusted, enabling the Finest to shut out Pangborn in the second half.
“Overall, the whole team stepped up today and it was a great team win,” Buersmeyer said.
Farley senior co-captain Rose-Marie Mazanek said the team chemistry this year has been great as well.
“Most of the team has been playing together for two or three years,” Mazanek said.
Pangborn’s offense was doing well in the beginning of the game, but when senior captain and quarterback Gracie Gallagher was injured at the start of second half, it had difficulty adjusting. Before her injury, Gallagher had been a mobile quarterback and threw for one touchdown while running for another. Gallagher said she was frustrated about her injury, but was staying positive about their next game.
“It’s hard to lose on that [running touchdown] play, but those were two amazing catches leading up to it,” Gallagher said. “[Farley] played well, we played well, and we will bounce back. The offense was working really well the first half. Putting the linemen out allowed us to take advantage of the run. If we play like that for the whole next game, we’ll be good.”
Pangborn next plays McGlinn Sunday while Farley plays against Howard Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Riehle Fields.
Pasquerilla West 20, Lyons 0
By Victoria Llorens
Pasquerilla West (2-0) shut out Lyons with a 20-0 victory Sunday to remain undefeated.
Although not reflected in the score, Lyons (0-2) was satisfied with its performance and came away from the game with high spirits and hopes of scoring during the next game, junior captain and tight end Melissa Hoelting said.
“We had some pretty good stops on defense,” Hoelting said. “They had a strong offense, and I was pretty happy with how we did defensively. I think we were pretty tough. Offensively, we have a couple things to work on. We’re right there. It’s just we need more practice on connecting as a group.”
The Weasels never backed down even when the game was consistently leaning in their favor. Senior Mary Kate Vicenzi, captain and receiver for the Weasels, said she applauded the Lions on their strong performance, especially from girls playing both sides of the field. For the Weasels, Vicenzi said the defense drove the team to victory.
“[Credit to senior] Bernie Jordan and [junior] Amanda Geiger for both getting interceptions this game,” Vicenzi said. “I think our defense was the real star of the day. [We got] a shutout so that’s obviously a good thing.”
Both teams play next on Sunday at LaBar Practice Complex for their third games of the season. Pasquerilla West will play Breen-Phillips at 5 p.m. and Lyons faces Cavanaugh at 6 p.m.
Knott 28, Duncan 25
By Joseph Everett
Knott got its first win of the season Sunday, beating Duncan 28-25.
Knott sophomore quarterback Tom O’Connell threw four touchdown passes to four different receivers, and the Juggerknott defense made enough plays, especially in defending two-point conversions, to win the shootout.
The game was a stark contrast of offensive styles, as the read-option offense for Duncan (0-2) consistently traded touchdowns with the aerial attack of Knott (1-0). The Highlanders found success early and often with their running game, as sophomore quarterback Matt Kase fed the ball to his two running-backs, sophomore Tommy Staffieri and freshman Micah Rensch, with the latter scoring all four Duncan touchdowns. Junior Highlander captain Stephen Treacy said he was thrilled with the domination up front.
“We played a hell of a game,” Treacy said. “I’m really frustrated with the outcome because we really dominated the line.”
While Duncan won in the trenches, Knott used speed and accuracy to churn up offensive yardage. Targeting the Highlander secondary all game long, O’Connell threw touchdowns of 62, 33, 48, and 37 yards to senior Jack Taiclet, sophomore David Kelly, sophomore Brody Scholl and senior Griffin Carroll, respectively. The Juggerknotts sealed the win with a late interception. Senior Knott captain Casey McCaffrey said his team’s aerial attack and defensive grit were enough to make the difference.
“I thought the passing today was terrific,” McCaffrey said. “It was great how we battled through tiredness, because we had a lot of guys playing both ways.”
Knott looks to continue its success next week against Siegfried on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Riehle Fields, while Duncan still looks to get its first win when the Highlanders face Alumni at the same time and place.
Keenan 41, O’Neill 6
By Alex Bender
On Sunday afternoon, Keenan came out on top with a 41-6 win over O’Neill.
The Knights (2-0) jumped out to a quick start with a long passing touchdown from senior quarterback Aaron DiGenova to senior Nathan Parisi, one of four passing touchdowns for DiGenova and two scores for Parisi on the day.
O’Neill (0-2) answered on the next drive, capping it off with a pass from junior quarterback Keenan Bailey to freshman William McNabola. The Mob was unable to convert the two point attempt, which kept Keenan up 7-6. But that wouldn’t be the case for long as DiGenova found Parisi again and put Keenan up 14-6.
Each of O’Neill’s next two drives saw them go three-and-out, both times giving Keenan good field position, which the Knights used to cash in for two more scores and go into the half up 27-6.
The second half started off with a turnover on downs by O’Neill, leaving Keenan poised for another score before O’Neill freshman Charlie Puntillo came up with an interception in the end zone.
O’Neill’s offense continued to struggle against Keenan’s defense, which forced a pick of its own before the Knights’ offense eventually tacked on a couple of rushing touchdowns.
Keenan captain junior Mikey Koller said he was extremely pleased with how the game went.
“Offensively, we put it all together, so we’re happy with our performance today and are looking forward to resting up on our bye week next week,” Koller said.
Despite the tough loss, Puntillo said the team is trying to stay positive.
“We were able to move the ball at times, but between the injuries and a young team still learning, it’s tough,” Puntillo said. “We’re hoping for better results as the year goes on.”
Next week O’Neill takes on Keough at 2:15 p.m. at Riehle Fields, and Keenan has a bye.