Genoa-Kingston keeps Burlington Central winless
Genoa-Kingston's homecoming crowd was treated to 5 touchdowns of at least 39 yards or more as the Cogs disposed of visiting Burlington Central 42-14 Friday night in Big Northern East football action.
First-year Central coach Jason Newburger indicated that being beaten by big plays is a story all too familiar to him and his team this year.
"Big plays have killed us a couple times this year," Newburger said. "They killed us against Dixon and it definitely came back to bite us tonight. We kind of lost some momentum on that first special teams play and then three long plays and it was 21-0 at halftime."
The Cogs recovered an onside kick to start the game at the Rockets' 32-yard line, but the Rockets forced them to turn the ball over on downs at the 16. The Rockets moved the ball up to their 42-yard line, but Robert Doubek's first-and-15 pass was intercepted by Zach Butler, and the Cogs regained possession on their own 38. After three plays, the Cogs had a first-and-10 on the Rockets' 49-yard line when a flea-flicker from Butler to Zach Miller to Ian Fell scored the first points of the game.
After forcing the Rockets to punt, the Cogs got the ball back on their own 30-yard line. Seven plays moved the ball to the Rockets' 42 when Butler this time found Fell for a 42-yard touchdown pass to put the Cogs up 14-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Burlington Central (0-5, 0-3) and Genoa-Kingston (3-2, 1-1) exchanged possessions before the Cogs took over on their own 32. After moving to the Rockets' 39, the drive seemed to stall, as the Cogs faced fourth-and-6, but Miller took a pitch from Butler and found Fell for their second connection of the game for a 39-yard touchdown pass to put the Cogs up 21-0 at the half.
Things didn't get much better in the second half for the Rockets. After failing to recover an onside kick attempt of their own, the Cogs took over at the 50-yard line and needed only one play to take a four-touchdown lead. Kegan Shannon burst threw the Rockets' line up the middle for a 50-yard touchdown run and a 28-0 lead.
The Cogs then recovered the ensuing onside kick and drove another 39 yards that was capped by a 5-yard touchdown run by Daniel Guardi.
After forcing the Rockets to punt, the Cogs scored their final points of the game when Butler returned a punt 90 yards to give them a 42-0 lead late in the third quarter.
The Rockets did find a spark late in the third quarter when running back Jason Berango took over at quarterback. He completed 3 of 4 passes for 57 yards, and ran for two scores to cap the scoring.
Newburger feels his team is close and thought the spark the Rockets received from Berango on offense might be something to consider in the future.
"We're close," Newburger said. "Probably not as close as the score would indicate, but these kids are working their butts off and I think we're real close. I can't say enough about that kid (Berango). He's had two knee surgeries and for him to come in and not miss practice, work as hard as anyone in the weight room and the field, and basically do anything you ask him to do. We worked a little bit at quarterback with him this week, but not a lot. He's just a football player; he's a gamer. Whatever we ask him to do, he's going to give us a chance to be successful. It was a nice little spark for us at the end. We'll re-evaluate this week as we do every week, and we'll try to put the right guys in 11 spots that give us the best chance at winning."