Another goose egg for Stallions

Brian C. Horey, Contributing Writer

August 3, 2009

The New York Stallions came close to scoring their first points of the 2009 Regional American Football League season Saturday, but a sack and a penalty led to a turnover on downs in the fourth quarter.

The New Jersey Spartans cruised to a 48-0 victory over the host Stallions, a first-year RAFL program that has been outscored, 210-0, in their first four games. Saturday’s game _ the Stallions’ third at Fortin Park in the Town of Oneonta _ drew about 150 fans.

New York’s best chance to score Saturday followed a blocked field-goal attempt that set up the Stallions at their 16-yard line early in the final quarter. Former Oneonta High standout quarterback James Champen then connected with Anthony Eardley for a 14-yard pass, but the Stallions lost 9 yards on their next two plays.

Eardley then caught a pass that traveled 18 yards through the air and turned it into a 68-yard gain down the right sideline to give New York a first down at the Spartans’ 11. Champen was sacked for 5 yards and threw an incompletion before the Stallions lost 5 more yards on a delay-of-game penalty. After another incomplete pass, Champen was forced to scramble for yards on fourth down. He was tackled after a 10-yard gain that brought the ball back to the original line of scrimmage.

New Jersey followed with the final scoring drive, highlighted by a 31-yard gain from quarterback Vin Barr and a 55-yard touchdown run by Jibril Stokes.

Stokes also started the scoring, after the Stallions went three-and-out following the opening kickoff. Stokes caught a 25-yard punt at the Spartans’ 27 and got two key blocks for a 73-yard return and a 6-0 lead. Chris Mandell’s extra point made it 7-0.

The Spartans scored on their second possession as Barr capped a drive with a 16-yard TD pass to Dan Stieby. New Jersey then took advantage of a bad snap on a Stallions’ punt attempt and took over at New York’s 28. Darryl Hill later gave New Jersey a 20-0 lead with a 2-yard TD run that was followed by another extra point by Mandell.

Hill scored his second TD of the second quarter on an 18-yard run, leading to a 28-0 halftime advantage. He also scored on New Jersey’s first possession of the third quarter with a 6-yard TD run. The Spartans (2-2) later took a 41-0 lead in the third quarter on a 25-yard TD catch by Strieby.

The Stallions play this Saturday at the North East Pennsylvania Miners. New York fell, 48-0, to NEPA at Fortin Park on July 18. After an Aug. 15 road game, the Stallions return to Fortin Park at 5 p.m. Aug. 22 to play the New Jersey Wolves in New York’s final home game of the 2009 season. The Stallions opened the season with a 61-0 loss at the Wolves on July 11.

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