Sunday, July 09, 2006

EFL Post Game Press Coverage July 9th

Ice Storm enter Empire League with blowout win
Published: Sunday, July 9, 2006
COLCHESTER -- The Vermont Ice Storm started their first season in the Empire Football League in winning fashion Saturday night, ripping the St. Lawrence Valley Trailblazers 40-0 behind a big second quarter.

Jason Young's 32-yard touchdown reception from quarterback Brad Ruderman was the only score of the first quarter, but the Ice Storm blew the game open with four second-quarter scores.

Young started the surge with a 16-yard touchdown run and Marvin Jenkins' 3-yard scoring run made it 20-0. Drew Gordon, playing on his wedding day, added a 42-yard interception return for a touchdown before a two-point conversion and Ruderman's 22-yard TD pass to Austin Partain gave the Ice Storm a 35-0 lead at halftime.

Lloyd White's safety and Gavin Battaglia's 32-yard field goal wrapped up the scoring in the second half.

John Fahey led the Ice Storm's ground game with 14 carries for 83 yards. Ruderman completed four of nine passes for 89 yards.

Kevin Fournier's seven tackles paced the Vermont defense. Joe Barnier added an interception.


Lake City ends Watertown hex
July 09, 2006

WATERTOWN — It's been a long time in coming for Lake City and head coach Ed McCallister.

McCallister, in his 10th season with the Stars, had never seen a victory for Lake City against Watertown on the Red & Black's home turf.

Saturday, however, the streak was finally broken.

Kellen Nolan tossed a pair of touchdown passes, as the Stars spent most of the night in Watertown's end of the field, to capture a 12-9 victory in the opening game of the Empire Football League schedule.

"I don't think I have seen a game where heart definitely made all of the difference," McCallister said. "I have never seen something like this in the 10 years I have been here. (Our players) were out of shape, but they sucked it up and for 60 straight minutes gave it all that they had — down to the last second."

Lake City took the lead in the first quarter when Nolan hooked up with Chris Verkey on a 26-yard pass play.

The Stars went into halftime with a 6-6 tie after the Red & Black scored a touchdown to draw even in the second quarter.

Nolan then gave Lake City the lead for good as he nailed Matt St. Clair on a 32-yard pass to give the Stars a 12-6 lead.

"We had some opportunities offensively," McCallister said. "We spent a lot of the game in their territory."

Watertown would only manage a field goal the rest of the way.

"We were able to run the ball in the fourth quarter to try and run the time out," McCallister said. "But, when we had to go to the air, James Blocker had two huge catches for us.

"We only had 17 guys at practice on Wednesday and it was almost looking like we wouldn't have a enough for a team. But, we all came together and (Saturday) was absolutely amazing — a great win for us.

"We have never been able to win over here and I know it doesn't mean anything except that we are 1-0, but it’s a lot better than being 0-1. And, anytime you can come to Watertown and play competitive it's a big deal

"I am so proud of these guys. They showed a great amount of effort and just never quit. Heart definitely mattered."

The Stars will be back to practice on Tuesday to prepare for their 2006 EFL home opener on Saturday against the Orange County Bulldogs. The game is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. at Melissa L. Penfield Park.

Lake City 12, Watertown 9
Lake City 6 0 6 0 — 12
Watertown 0 6 0 3 — 9

Scoring summary
First quarter
LC- Verkey 26 pass from Ke. Nolan.

Second quarter
W- touchdown.

Third quarter
LC- M. St. Clair 32 pass from Ke. Nolan.
W- field goal.


Comforts of Home Not So for Metro Mallers

When a team starts its season with three straight road games, the prospect of the home opener usually evokes feelings of relief and a kind of relaxation and release of tension that build up in strange surroundings. But tonight’s 2006 home opener for the Albany Metro Mallers had the team playing as if it were still another road game. The Mallers faced an overmatched team from Ramapo, NY the Rockland County Bruins, and only managed to come away with a 14 – 0 victory in front of 318 fans at Frank Bailey Field at Union College in Schenectady. It was a night of missed opportunities.

Miscues and penalties were the way of the game, as the Mallers seemed to continually keep the door open for a Bruin upset all through the game.

As play started the defending Empire Football League Champs got right on the board the wrong way, with 2 consecutive  5 yard offside penalties putting the Bruins in Maller territory with a First down without ever running a play. But once the Bruins did run a play, they began to wish they hadn’t, as the tough Albany Defense had their way, as Anthony DeChairo, Greg Woodward, Alvin Foy and company kept Rockland QB Fred Michel on the move or on his back,  all night long. They were not with out their lapses as penalties continued to dog the defense keeping Bruin drives alive especially on third or fourth and long  situations.

Back on offense, the early going was rough as a Scott Lawson interception ended the first of Albany’s drives into the red zone. Then came a fumble on the exchange from Lawson to All American Running Back Sylvester Cooperwood, which ended the second drive inside the Rockland 25.

Albany finally struck pay dirt when Lawson connected with Maceo Clinton with 1:56 left in the half from 9 yards out for the only score of the Half. Lawson again was on the mark with 8:48 in the third as he tossed a 14 yard scoring strike to John Mulino. Joe Bonfonte’ added the PAT on both of the Albany Scores.

Special teams was not exempt from the shenanigans either, as a 95 yard punt return by Farid Baaklini, was negated by a hold in the second quarter.

Lawson finished the evening with an 11 for 16 performance for 143 Yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception. Cooperwood punished the Bruins with the ground game 15 carries for 78 yards and a fumble. Despite the scoring strikes going to Clinton and Mulino, second year Wide out Culture Branch turned in a  5 reception for 75 yard performance. Meanwhile the Defense put up a  4 sack, 2 interception and 1 fumble recovery job on the evening.

Albany coaches stressed post game the need for this team to raise its Football IQ and stay focused on the field if they expect to defend their EFL Championship title in 2006.

Rockland falls to 1-1 on the year and the Metro Mallers advance to 3-1.

Albany travels to Colchester Vermont, on Saturday evening to begin its title defense as they take on the Vermont Ice Storm in Empire Football League Action.

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