Landon 42 StA 14

Upper Multisport Stadium Field

 

 

 

Upper Multisport Stadium Field

The 20 seniors walked onto St. Albans’ new, beautiful football field for the 86th contest between the Bears and the Bulldogs with considerable determination to the cumulative record L 42 StA 40 and 4 ties. The Class of 2016’s leadership and support from their younger Bear Brothers resulted in a 42 to 14 victory.

The visitors kicked off and played strong D on the 1st series, forcing a three and out—including an awesome tackle on a bubble screens. The Bears moved the ball on its initial possession, but had to punt. The Bulldogs put together six plays, but on a 4th and 3 yards, their center rolled the ball to the punter—setting up good field position for Landon.

Two plays later Joey Epstein (’18) ran the last 12 yards to give his team a 6-0 lead and the Jack Concannon to John Geppert to Aaron Broner combination converted the PAT to make it Landon 7 StA 0 4:10.

This began three consecutive offensive series in which the Bears drove for TDs.

StA got the ball and saw two passes broken up by Brian Menendez and then by Griffin Brown. Those plays by seniors forced the host team to punt or so it appeared. The Bulldogs, who had used a Rugby style kick in their previous two punts, inserted another player who started the step-step-step pattern perfected by the Aussies. The steps changed to a sprint and the “punter’ ran 50 yards to set up a first and goal at the five yard line. It took two runs and a PAT to even the score, 7-7, at 1:50 of the opening stanza.

The guests began a 10 play drive that moved the clock to Q2 and the ball 65 yards. Tommy Baldwin (’18), Aiden Howe (’18), Bryce Baylor(’18), John Geppert (’18) and Griffin zoomed the ball behind the Bears line for 39 yards plus Griffin connected with Joey for 27 yards through the air. The senior QB delivered on the ground the go ahead TD @ 8:48. The PAT triplets (1 to 8 to 3) made it Bears 14 Bulldogs 7

The new field’s team was given another offensive opportunity, but a TFL by Joey caused a three-and-out plus a punt.

Landon had the ball first down, 62 yards from the StA goal. Joey and John Geppert gained good yards on runs and then Griffin showed his open field skills with a 49 yard TD run in, around, through and over the opponents @6:39. The steady PAT team added their point to make it Landon 21 StA 7.

Once again the home team’s offense was unable to solve Coach Paladino’s D and punted once more. Landon maintained possessions for 6 plays and punted. The Bulldogs tried passes to get their offense going, but the receivers were well covered. The fifth punt by the hosts gave the ball back to their guests with 0:58 left until half.

Fifty four yards in less than a minute is not the standard fare for the Bears; the winged T (see Navy and Georgia Tech) has limits in the air. Griffin passed on 4 consecutive downs to (i) Brian +7 (ii) to Jack Porter +3, (iii) to Jack +7 and (iv) to Brian +24 moved the clock to 0:20 and 12 yards from a score. The stubborn Bulldogs were arrayed to stop a 5th pass and Griffin instead winded around through the home team for another TD @0:12. The 1 to 8 to 3 combination made it Bears 28 Bulldogs 7. StA exhausted the remaining time.

 

HALFTIME BEARS 28 BULLDOGS 7

At the intermission, StA great Jonathan Ogden presented a gold ball (an NFL memento of his Super Bowl victory) to his school. Ogden’s appearance, plus the pregame the Senior Day ceremony, were intended to fire up the home team. Actually the NFL HoF tackle’s attendance might have been considered negative karma; his team lost to Landon 28-7 in 1991.

The Bears received the 2nd half kickoff and they drove 43 yards before a fumble gave it back to StA. That possession suffered a damaging setback when Joshua Chapman (’19) crushed the Bulldog QB for a 9 yard TFL. Another home team punt was the result.

The guests drove 29 yards but once more a fumble returned possession to the team from Mt. St. Albans. Grant Hani and Joey combined for a 4 yard TFL and Jalen Williams (’18) made an exceptional play on the ball to break up an StA pass attempt. That time moved the period to #4 on the scoreboard. The Bulldogs QB threw a pass which John Geppert intercepted and returned it to a point only 37 yards from the goal line.

Griffin passed to Mark Ebo for a 22 yard gain. The ball was handed to Joey and 15 yards later the score moved to Landon 34 StA 7. Aaron booted his fifth PAT onto 34th Street @11:27 of the 4th Q to add a point (35).

 

Ever the rival the StA boys drove 60 yards to score. Bears 35 Bulldogs 14 at 3:23.

An onsides kick did not work as the Bears recovered the bouncing ball. Another fumble seemed to energize the home team and they moved the ball for 12 plays. A host team failed 4th down conversion resulted in Landon getting the ball 68 yards from another score and 3 minutes remaining. A couple of runs into the line brought the line of scrimmage to the 50 yard line. The sophomore back, Aiden, found a hole in the Bulldogs’ D line and ran half of the field in one play = TD @ 2:00. PAT good Landon 42 Bulldogs 14.

A quick StA possession followed by the Bears’ taking a knee moved the clock to 0:00. A nice victory at a beautiful new stadium.

The seniors not mentioned in the article include (in order of their numbers)

  • Ben Goodfriend
  • Keith Simms
  • Josh Hunter
  • Justin Connor
  • Derek Hankim
  • Joshua Engel
  • Joseph Gagnon
  • Grant Hani
  • Steven Gee
  • John Slowinski
  • George Shalloway
  • Eric Shalloway
  • Zach Weiner

These Bears included starters, injured players and seniors who backed up/supported other brothers. From the first preseason practices to all of the film sessions to every afternoon and through every minute of this season, all of these young men showed tremendous leadership, hard work, enthusiasm and loyalty. Each and every one of them merits much gratitude from their Bear Brothers of the past, today and the future. They will be missed.

Losing 20 talented members of this squad is a big loss, but as noted throughout this article, the Members of the Classes of ’17,’18, ’19 plus Coach Derwinski’s very talented and successful JVs mean the 2016 football season should be promising! GO BEARS!!!

 

FINAL SCORE BEARS 42 BULLDOGS 14

LANDON STATITISTICS

Rushing

Player                  rushes       yards                   TDs

Brown                  10               103             3

Epstein                13               95               2

Howe                   5                 48               1

Geppert               9                 40

Baylor                  7                 39

Baldwin               6                 3

396

Passing

Passer       passes       completions        yards                  

Brown        7                 6                           92

Receivers           catches               yards

Menendez           2                           31

Epstein                1                           29

Ebo                      1                           22

Porter                  2                           19

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Published in: on November 15, 2015 at 5:39 am  Leave a Comment  

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