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Spartans Shine Under Friday Night Lights
Oct. 3, 2017
Spartans Shine Under Friday Night Lights
As a cold, fall wind whipped across the turf, the Lorne Park Spartans came out to play under the lights on Friday at David Suzuki, moving to 2 and 0 with a 48 0 victory over the Grizzlies. The score however is misleading as David Suzuki consistently tested the Spartans with tough, physical play and non stop effort. It was a terrific night for the team, who got to enjoy the atmosphere of football under the lights and the cheers from supporters who braved the weather to support the team.
The offense continued it's strong start to the season, needing to rely on the run game in the monsoon like conditions. Although sometimes underappreciated by fans and players, the offensive line's importance is clear to the coaching staff and LP's line had a good performance on the turf. The unit, Zander Castro Wiese led the way, giving the backfield and quarterback time to read and attack the defense. The line played well, with first year player Liam Ventresca also making his case to be an absolute force for the Spartans moving forward. Liam Bowman had another good day in the backfield, with four rushing touchdowns. Bowman continued to be a difficult man to bring down, as his quick feet and strength proved a challenge for the Suzuki defenders. Many of his runs on the day were into traffic and well read by the defenders but they just could not bring him down. Chey Charles also ran hard for the Spartans, as he punished defenders who tried to stop his runs. Charles was also a weapon on the Kickoff team, booming his kicks through the wind and using his size to help tackle the returner. The Spartans were able to convert on a number of short fields and put Suzuki behind big early, which really impacted the feel of the game. Quarterback Nolan Dillingham showed off his athleticism with dominating runs in the adverse conditions. His two rushing touchdowns helped put the game out of reach and his arm was still on display with strong quick out throws and on one throw that the wind took 15 yards deeper than the fly running receiver could get to, but the setting was just not great for passing.
The defense recorded its second straight shutout to start the season, with speed and aggressive tackling. The dominance started at the line, with Dougal Graham, Kofi Danso and gameday captain Mason Tonks absolutely dominating their counterpart and living in the backfield. Graham in particular was an unstoppable force, making tackle after tackle on defense and on special teams. Max Henry again had a great game at middle linebacker, with excellent tackling and leadership on the field. The secondary did its job taking away the long pass, with Brady Farquharson locked up on the deep threat, and Shadi Abdelmalik was strong in run support in a game with little passing. However, Max Ramsay was able to show his db skills off late in the game with a terrific pick that he almost was able to turn into 6 points. Again what was really encouraging was that the level of effort and success did not dip as players were rolled into starting positions. It was the kind of effort and execution that will be needed as the Spartans head into games against St. Roch and St. Marcellinus.
The Clarkson Pump Offensive Player of the Game was Nolan Dillingham, who showed he can punish with his legs as well as with his arm. The Clarkson Pump Defensive Player of the Game was Dougal Graham, who is always a key part of the defense, but he absolutely dominated the field on this Friday Night.
The Spartans now return from the road and are energized to play two straight home games in The Cage. The team has a short week coming up and are preparing for a very talented St. Roch team. The team knows it will have to clean up its mistakes and turnovers and that will be a focus this week. The current kickoff time is 1:00pm on Thursday at Lorne Park, but we have been informed that it may be changed due to conflicts with referee scheduling, so please check this site for an update early this week.