Sunday, August 28, 2005
Stars escape with victory
POTSDAM — A pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns helped the Lake City Stars avoid an upset bid by the host St. Lawrence Valley Trailblazers Saturday at Sandstoner Park.
Trailing 8-7 entering the final quarter, the Stars (6-3) scored twice on the ground to pull out a 20-8 victory and improve to 5-2 in the Empire Football League.
"We didn’t start playing until the second half, we were complacent, we had our backs against the wall," said Lake City head coach Ed McCallister.
Lake City wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard in the first, with Marlowe Boylan connecting on a 57-yard scoring strike to Chris Verkey on the opening series. Fortunately for the Stars, by the time they found the endzone again, it wasn’t too late.
Matt St. Clair set up the first of the two fourth-quarter scores with a 40-yard punt return. Heath Geiser eventually bounced in from 15 yards out and after a failed two-point conversion try, the Stars held a 13-8 lead with about 10 minutes left on the clock.
On the ensuing possession for St. Lawrence Valley (2-5 EFL, 3-6), Lake City’s Ronnie Foster picked off a pass and ran it back 35 yards. This time, Kyle Nolan ran his way into the endzone from eight yards out and with a Ryan Decamp extra point the Stars stretched their lead to 20-8.
Another interception sealed the game for Lake City, as Kellan Nolan picked off a pass in the closing minute and ran it back 60 yards. The Stars were able to kneel on the ball at the St. Lawrence Valley 5-yard line, running out the clock.
The Trailblazers took an 8-7 lead in the second after a punt bounced off a Lake City player. Quarterback Dave Currier eventually squeezed in from two yards out on fourth and goal and Ernie Miller’s two-point conversion run was good.
The Stars were able to pick up the win despite the absence of several key starters, including quarterback Eddie Castine and running backs Vern Harrison and John Faheey.
"We were short some of our offensive weapons and if you don’t have the threat of a pass, it’s hard to run the ball, the yards we got, we earned," said McCallister. "The offensive line did a great job.
"The bottom line is these games are tough to win, but we figured out a way, it wasn’t a gimme."
The entire league has a bye next week for Labor Day. The Stars’ next game will be September 10 at home against Ottawa.http://www.pressrepublican.com/Archive/2005/08_2005/08282005s1.htm