Offense Edges Defense In Spring Game
April 24, 2010
NORFOLK, Va. -- The offense walked away the victors over the defense Saturday at football's spring game by a score of 30-27.
The game was broken into seven segments with the offense receiving six points for a touchdown, three points for a field goal, and one point for a PAT. The defense earned points on the scoreboard with stops including three points for forcing a punt and three points for a missed field goal.
The first segment featured the No. 1 offense vs. the No. 1 defense beginning at the defense's 32 yard line. The defense went up 6-0 after forcing the offense to punt twice. First, led by quarterback Thomas DeMarco (Palm Desert, Calif.), the offense made their way down to the defense's 32 yard line, but the special teams unit was called onto the field and Drew Hareza (McDonald, Pa.) missed a 49 yard field goal wide left. The second time, Dominique Blackman (Los Angeles, Calif.) and the offense made their way to the defense's 45, but was forced to punt with All-American Jonathan Plisco (Newport News, Va.) punting for 36 yards.
The second segment featured the No. 2 offense starting at their own 45 yard line against the No. 2 defense. The first set went to the defense stopping their teammates on their own 42 to go up 12-0, but it wasn't very long before the offense registered their first points of the afternoon. Angus Harper (Alexandria, Pa.) opened the second set with seven yard carry and then followed by breaking the defense for a 48 yard run down the left side of the field to find the end zone. Transfer Jarod Brown (Yorktown, Va.) kicked the extra point to cut the score to 13-7, still in favor of the Monarch defense. Quarterback Tommy Reamon (Newport News, Va.) got out of a tricky situation in the third set run. Looking at a third and 15 situation at the offense's 40, Reamon helped move field position to the other side of the 50 with a 15 yard pass to Michael E. Williams (Manassas, Va.). Continuing to move down field, the offense got into position to set up Hareza for a 37-yard field goal, bringing the score to 12-10, still in the defense's favor.
The third segment returned to the No. 1 offense and defense, but this time started the ball at the defensive 25. A third and 10 at the defensive 24, DeMarco used an 18 yard pass to Dorrian Jackson setting the offense for first and goal at the six. The defense held though as four plays saw the offense get no closer than the one yard line. The second set had the Monarch offense drive down to the one yard line as well thanks in part to a 13-yard pass from Blackman to Nick Mayers (Va. Beach, Va.). Once again, the defense was a wall letting no one through, however this time at fourth and goal, the special teams unit was called out and Hareza nailed a 19-yard field goal attempt. The third segment ended with defensive ahead, 15-13.
Segment number four featured the No. 2 offense and defense starting at offense's 32. The first part of the segment saw the longest play of the day on the opening drive. Blackman completed a 41 yard pass to Mayers. It was later followed by a nine-yard pass to Jamal Johnson (Va. Beach, Va.) helping the offense get inside the 10. Unlike the last segment, this time the offense was able to break through the defense with Desmond Williams (Lewiston, N.C.) pushing his way over the endline. Brown completed the seven-point play for the offense with his PAT to give the offense it first lead of the game at 20-16. The second part saw the defense collect another stop holding the offense to just seven yards, but ended the game's fourth segment down 20-18.
The two-minute drill was brought out for segment number five featuring the No.1 offense and defense. Starting at the offensive 32, the offense took the ball down to the 26 and at fourth and seven saw Hareza sail the ball through the uprights on a 43-yard attempt and give the offense a 23-18 edge.
The No. 2 offense and defense returned to the field for segment number six with defense regaining the lead. Starting the drill at their own 45, the offense lost yardage and was forced to punt. The defense then went ahead 24-23 as a pair of fumbles by stopped the offense from advancing.
The game came down to the final segment with a red zone drill. At first and goal on the 10, the offense had to score, while the defense had to make the stop to hold on to the lead and the game. The offense needed just two plays to score. Pass interference put the offense at the two and on the next play, just as he did all last season, DeMarco found the gap in the line to run the ball in for a score. Hareza hit the PAT to close out the game.
DeMarco finished the day completing 12 of his 17 attempts for 116 yards, while Blackman went 6-of-9 for 96 yards.
Harper, who had nine carries for 63 years and scored on of the two touchdowns of the afternoon, led the ground attack. Mayers (Va. Beach, Va.) had a pair of carries averaging eight yards per run.
In the air, both Mayers and Reid Evans (Hampton, Va.) collected four catches. Mayers led the way with 68 yards, including the 41 yard reception from Blackman in segment four. Evans posted 52 yards.
Defensively, the Monarchs were led by last year's leader in tackles Mychael McJunkins (Kansas City, Kan.) and Hofstra transfer Ronnie Cameron (Westbury, N.Y.). Both had five stops in the game. Markewll Willkins (Hampton, Va.) totaled four tackles.
LET THE COUNTDOWN BEGIN:
Kickoff for the 2010 season is set for Sept. 4th against Jacksonville...a mere 132 days away from Saturday's spring game.
"The number one thing we want to do is create more competition on our team," said head coach Bobby Wilder. "We didn't have the depth last year to be able to create it and this spring we did with the seven transfers we brought it. It really upped the level of competition along with the 10 players we redshirted last year, it was a huge spring for them to play this spring and get in the mix. I'm really happy with the level of competition for spots on offense and defense."