The Daily Star
---- — Staff Report
Walton coach Jim Hoover said he told his squad he wanted to see some more toughness in Week 2.
The Warriors responded by limiting the visiting Oxford to 123 yards of offense in a 30-6 Section Four Football Conference non-division victory Saturday.
“I was a little concerned with our defense,” Hoover said following his team’s 18-16 win over Whitney Point in Week 1. “I didn’t see that little toughness in them, but they showed me they like to play football. We had some real good hits. For a while, they couldn’t get back to the line.”
Oxford’s Angelo Gonzales attempted 27 passes but completed five for 42 yards. Walton also intercepted two passes.
“We had a good pass rush and the defensive backs kept things in front of them,” Hoover said. “Defensively, we improved 100 percent.”
Walton (2-0) opened the scoring on its second drive, which was capped by a 19-yard run by Christian Rutherford. He also scored on the two-point run to make it 8-0.
In the second quarter, Austin Kilmer returned a punt 44 yards for a touchdown. Kilmer found a seam on the left side en route to the end zone.
“That was real important,” Hoover said of Kilmer’s return. “Offensively, we moved the ball well, but we fumbled five times and lost three. A couple of times, we were driving for touchdowns, so (Oxford) was hanging in there. But that punt return got us going. That set the tone.”
Quarterback Trevor Zandt completed two passes on Walton’s third-quarter scoring drive. The drive started deep in Walton territory, but Zandt hit Jacob Wright on a play that covered 46 yards.
A few plays later, Walton fumbled. Zandt recovered, but the Warriors lost 8 yards.
“The next play we threw to (Matt) Sinistore,” said Hoover, a 38th-year coach who has 295 victories. “He was the tight end and ran down the seam. He was a yard or so behind the defender and he went up and got it.”
The touchdown play went for 19 yards and Rutherford’s PAT run made it 22-0. Rutherford rushed for 103 yards on 10 carries and Zandt completed 3 of 6 pass for 93 yards.
Quinn Harby (83 rushing yards) scored on a 1-yard run in the fourth quarter to cap the scoring.
Walton will begin Division V play at home Saturday against high-scoring Unatego. The Spartans defeated Sidney, 32-30, on Friday, with sophomore quarterback Josh Feyerabend throwing for 367 yards and four touchdowns.
“I think they’ve thrown 59 times in two weeks,” Hoover said of the Spartans. “It’s not just that they throw the ball all over the place with four good receivers they throw to equally, but they run the ball wall. You can’t just drop everybody. We’ll have our hands full.”
Whitney Point 44, UV 0
Chris Bateman made 10 tackles for visiting Unadilla Valley, which finished 1 yard of total offense in a non-division loss.
“We were not able to establish our quick passing game, nor our running game, as miscues and mistakes seemed to be the order of the day,” first-year UV coach Mark Segina wrote in an email.
The Storm (0-2) fumbled six times and lost two of them.
Lance Gage completed 3 of 4 passes for 15 yards for the Storm, who will host 0-2 Delhi on Friday in a Division V game.
“I scouted Delhi at Greene this past Friday (a game Delhi lost, 16-14) and (Delhi is) the best 0-2 team I’ve seen,” Segina wrote. “It’s going to be a big test for our guys.”
West Canada 34, Cooperstown 0
Lucas Lyons rushed 22 times for 69 yards and made 10 tackles for host Cooperstown, which lost a Section Three Football Conference game.
Joe Harmon contributed 21 rushing yards for Cooperstown (0-2), which will play at Dolgeville on Saturday.
Norwich 43, Oneonta 7
Host Norwich scored on its first three possessions en route to a Section Four Football Conference Division II victory Friday.
Jaden MacRabie caught a 13-yard pass from Michael Sutton to cap the Purple Tornado’s first scoring drive. Following a three-and-out by OHS, Sutton scored on a 47-yard run and Zan Stewart’s PAT made it 14-0.
Another three-and-out by OHS followed and Norwich blocked the Yellowjackets’ punt attempt. Seven plays later, Sutton hit Matt Burke on a 22-yard scoring play. Stewart’s PAT gave Norwich a 21-0 lead.
“They got us leaning the wrong way a couple of times and had a couple of big runs,” first-year OHS coach John Mushtare said of Norwich’s fast start.
Oneonta averted the shutout when Austin Scheer scored on a 14-yard run in the fourth quarter. Mat Robinson’s PAT made it 43-7.
“Our offense was more productive this time,” said Mushtare, whose team lost, 58-7, to Elmira in Week 1. “We only scored 7 points, but we ran for 140 yards. Once we got going in the second quarter, we moved it a little better and after the first quarter, we played better defensively.”
Scheer finished with a team-high 63 rushing yards on 14 carries.
“Scheer had success off tackle on the right side,” Mushtare said. “I would say most of our success on the day came on off-tackle plays to either side.”
The Yellowjackets (0-2, 0-1) will host Susquehanna Valley (1-1) at 7 p.m. Friday.
“They also have a new coach this year,” Mushtare said of Sabers coach Mike Ford. “I’m impressed with what he’s put together. They beat Ithaca in Week 1 and lost to JC (21-13) this past week in a close game all the way. They have a number of backs who can run. They’ve put together quite a package. I’m impressed in the amount the things they’ve done in a short time.”
Oneonta closed its 2-7 season a year ago with a 38-26 win over SV.
Greene 16, Delhi 14
Brian Ingram scored two touchdowns, the latter giving Delhi a lead in the fourth quarter, but host Greene rallied Friday for a non-division victory.
Ingram, who rushed for a team-high 91 yards on 18 carries, scored on a 1-yard in the third quarter as Delhi closed to 10-6.
In the fourth quarter, Ingram’s 6-yard scoring run and Conner Gioffe’s two-point run gave the Bulldogs a 14-10 lead.
“We looked strong at times,” Delhi coach Dave Kelly said of his 0-2 squad. “We’ve had a little difficulty in the secondary and it cost us the game. That and mishandling a punt.”
With the lead in the fourth quarter, Delhi forced a punt. But a fumble gave the ball back to Greene.
That set up Joe Beckwith’s 29-yard scoring pass to Shawn Brigham with about four minutes left.
Kelly said his squad drove to about midfield before its final drive stalled.
“We blocked our stuff sometimes,” said Kelly, whose squad lost, 18-0, to Harpursville last week. “We’re quite inconsistent right now. We have some young lineman and we’re a little inconsistent. We played pretty well, but we do just enough things, we make just enough errors that don’t have to be errors and they really hurt us.”
Noah Dedominicis gained 90 rushing yards on 13 attempts, and quarterback Connor Gioffe had 72 yards on the ground and another 54 through the air.
Delhi will travel to 0-2 Unadilla Valley on Friday.
“They have good size,” Kelly said of the Storm. “They have excellent size and their linebackers have excellent size. They may make us throw the ball.”