The East Dragons had to battle two opponents on Saturday afternoon at Byers Field in Parma. The first opponent was the Normandy Invaders. The second opponent was Mother Nature.
Normandy won the weather battle and beat the Dragons 29-6.
It was a slow start for the Dragons. The East offense lost 14 yards on their first three plays and fumbled the ball. Fortunately, the Dragons recovered their own miscue.
After an exchange of punts, Normandy took advantage of as short punt by the Dragons and took over at the East 20. The Invaders got the ball to the five-yard line, before the drive stalled. Greg Raimondo kicked a 25-yard field goal to give the Invaders a 3-0 lead.
Following an East punt, Normandy was on the move again. Quarterback Auston Petruska hit Jake Thomas with two passes for 30 yards on the drive. Running backs Mike Dell and Ovidiu Pavel shared the carries as Normandy moved the ball to the East four-yard line. Raimondo kicked another field goal, this one 29 yards to give Normandy a 6-0 lead.
The Dragons were able to tie the score just before halftime. Senior Quarterback Tevin Richards hit senior wide receiver Shaquille Alexander on a crossing route. Alexander broke a tackle and turned on the after burners. 74-yards later, Alexander was in the end zone and the score was tied at six. On the try for the extra point, Alexander rolled right and threw a pass to a wide open Richard Fields. But, Alexander three the ball too high and it fell incomplete.
At halftime, the game was tied at six.
The Dragons appeared to have taken the lead midway through the third quarter on a 73-yard touchdown pass from Richards to Zamar Whitaker. But, the Officials whistled the Dragons for holding. That seemed to take the momentum away from East.
Dragons head coach Damon Beasley agreed. “These kids were down for a little bit. Something like that hurt them mentally. We were looking for something positive to happen there. It was a great play call. But, t took a lot out of us.”
Normandy took advantage of the penalty call on their next set of downs. The Invaders moved 82 yards in 10 plays to score their only touchdown. Tailback Mike Dell had the big play in the drive, a draw play for 49 yards. Senior fullback Joe Mubarac closed out the drive with a one yard run for the TD. The extra point made it 13-6 in favor of Normandy.
The Invaders wrapped up the scoring in the fourth quarter on a 20-yard field goal by Raimondo, his third of the game. Normandy scored a defensive touchdown when safety Thomas Keller intercepted a Richards’ pass and returned it 62 yards for a touchdown.
Normandy’s record is 1-1. East falls to 0-2.
But, Beasley says his team is not down and out. “Our guys will come back. We’ve got to. I’ll find a way somehow.’
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
East – 0 – 6 – 0 – 0 = 6
Normandy – 3 – 3 – 7 – 16 = 29
N – Greg Raimondo 25 yard field goal 4:24
N – Raimondo 29-yard field goal 8:06
E – Shaquille Alexander 74 pass from Tevin Richards (pass failed) 0:40
N – Joe Mubarac 1 yard run. (Raimondo kick):07
N – Raimondo 20 yard field goal 6:04
N – Thomas Keller 62 yard return of an intercepted pass. (Raimondo Kick) 5:27
N – Matt Silvestro 1 yard run. (Kick failed) 1:45