Defense Brings Battle Victory
Ed Gladney July 20 2009
STATEN ISLAND – Good thing the Battle defense came to play, because the offense struggled mightily during the 33-7 victory over the New Jersey Spartans. Mustering a putrid 146 yards the offense cashed in on the extra opportunities and field position gifted to them by the defense.
Safety Devraun Thompson picked off two passes and recovered two fumbles in the contest to lead the defense in the contest.
“You have to know football I have many years of playing. At Rutgers, I just studied the game,” Thompson said referring to his knack of finding the ball.“Each day you get a feel for the type of plays that are going to happen. You get a good sense of where to be.”
Thompson’s first interception set the Battle up on the Spartan side of the field. Quarterback Mike Pernell wasted no time in hooking up with receiver Rahdel Savage for the first of three touchdowns on the day. Savage maximized his three receptions, taking them all to the end zone covering a combined 72 yards.
Trailing 14-0, the Spartans made a game of it by scoring their first points of the season when quarterback Vincent Barr connected with Shaq Blakely for a 3-yard touchdown.
Any momentum gained quickly disappeared as NaQuan Jenkins raced 75 yards with the ensuing kickoff. The return pushed the lead back up to two scores and the Battle defense took over from there.
“The Battle defense played great all day,” Barr said. “Offensively, we saw the gaps in their defense and wanted to attack them aggressively, but our offensive line wore down. Next week, we have to go back to
the drawing board and prepare for next week’s opponent.”
Spartan head coach, Kevin Moss took this game as a learning experience, taking into consideration everything that has gone on over the week.
“The guys rallied around each other and came together. We made it with the players we had and we came to do the best we could. In the second quarter, we found we can have success, even with losing some players,” Moss said.“Today we found ourselves. We lost some leaders, but now we found ourselves. Going into week 3, everyone can expect to see the real Spartans. In ’08, we knew who we were, but in ’09, we didn’t. With this game, the Battle helped us find ourselves and everyone can be prepared now that we have found ourselves.”
Battle head coach Gene White commented on the sluggish start and knows his team has to improve before the game next week with the New Jersey Lions.
“We came out sluggish to start,” White said. “I attribute that to us not being completely prepared. We noticed their limited numbers and played to their level. Next week, we have to start quickly. We have to get back to scoring every time we touch the ball.”
|B – Savage 17 yard pass from Pernell (Jenkins run)|
|B – Jenkins 1 yard run (pass failed)|
|S – Blakely 2 yard pass from Barr (Mandell kick)|
|B – Jenkins 75 yard kickoff return (Jenkins run)|
|B – Savage 19 yard pass from Pernell (run failed)|
|B – Savage 36 yard pass from Pernell (pass failed)|
|Return yards Spartans 6-147 Battle 2-105|
|Penalty yards Spartans 5-50 Battle 5-40|
Article courtesy of plainfieldsportsnews.com