NAIL BITER AT THE DAWG POUND-WESTMO DROPS OPENER 28-20
Jeff Pexton-MHTS/PGI Photo
It was a tale of two tailbacks and a tale of two halves this afternoon at the “dog pound” on the campus of Westmoreland High School, as the General Brown Lions erased a 14-0 half time deficit and knocked off the Westmoreland Bulldogs by a score of 28-20, in a Section III, Class “C” / Class “D” crossover game.
It was “Americana As Usual” this afternoon in Westmoreland, with the sounds of the renowned Bulldog Marching Band, the huge hometown crowd, the fire whistle, the smells of the wonderful Westmoreland Bulldogs Boosters concession stand grill and the ever present, “Voice of Bulldogs Football,” Gerry Schaller, beaming from the press box.
The first half of this one belonged to the Bulldogs and their speedy running back, Tim Harrison. The home team got touchdown runs of 35 and 84 yards, to carry a 14-0 lead into the intermission.
For head coach, Tim Gates, and the huge contingent of Bulldogs faithful in attendance, Westmoreland’s first half performance had to come as a pleasant surprise.
Sophomore quarterback, Tyler Deveans, was smooth and consistent, and seemed to be running the Dawgs offense as though he’d be doing it for years.
Harrison, as well as teammate,Robert Heitzman, were fluid and appeared to be able to find holes in the General Brown front four, seemingly at will, for the first 30 minutes anyway.
Anyone familiar with General Brown football, or small school football in general, had to know that long time head coach, Steve Fisher, (255 wins and 3 Section III titles), who recently came out of retirement to coach his beloved Lions, would make adjustments at the half to stem the Bulldogs tide.
Sure enough, General Brown adjusted and the momentum seemed to turn in favor of the navy blue and gold in the final thirty minutes of this ball game.
Where the first half, and even some of the second half, as it turned out, belonged to the Bulldogs offensive line and tailback Tim Harrison. The second half belonged to the Lions offensive line and tailback, Zach Pitre.
General Brown sophomore quarterback, Evan Will, did an excellent job with misdirection plays all afternoon.
The Lions pulled to within 14-6 on a one yard run by Zach Pitre midway through the third quarter, giving the road weary Lions faithful a reason to celebrate.
Pitre then opened the fourth quarter with an 8 yard touchdown run which, after the two point conversion pass, tied the score at 14-14.
Tim Harrison briefly extinguished the hopes of General Brown , when #1 scampered 50 yards around the right side for a score that made it 20-14 Westmoreland, half way through the fourth period of play.
Trailing by six and the game slipping away, General Brown answered the bell with a nine play, 54 yard drive, that resulted in a 23 yard touchdown run for, you guessed it, Zach Pitre, to make it 20-20 with under six minutes remaining in the ball game.
Evan Will hit Dylan Dagan in the end zone for the two point conversion and the Lions took a 22-20 lead. It was a lead they would not relinquish.
The Bulldogs did get the ball back and managed to drive it near midfield, but four straight, pass plays ended in in-completions and the Lions took over on downs and then took home the victory.
Tim Harrison finished the day with 245 yards rushing and three touchdowns for Westmoreland, (0-1).
The Bulldogs will open Class “D” Central Division play on the road next Saturday, when they visit Pulaski (1-0), a 47-0 winner over Oriskany today.
General Brown 28 Westmoreland 20
1 2 3 4 Total
General Brown 0 0 6 22 28
Westmoreland 7 7 0 6 20