FONDA- The Fonda-Fultonville Braves scored three touchdowns in the first quarter and never looked back as they cruised to a 40-14 thrashing over the Cairo-Durham Mustangs at John G. Boshart Field on Saturday.
The Mustangs outscored the Braves 8-6 in the second half of action, but the Braves went into halftime with a 34-6 lead that was never in question. After a three and out forced the Mustangs to punt following their first series of the game, Fonda-Fultonville's Pat Hart returned the ball to the Braves' seven yard line. Two plays later, the Braves had an early 6-0 lead thanks to a 1-yard run by fullback Anthony Sinicropi.
Mustang quarterback George Pooters botched a handoff on Cairo-Durham's next drive, which was recovered by Fonda-Fultonville team captain Zak Shaw. Hart proceeded to run the ball three times for a total of 37 yards, including the final run that was good for three yards and a touchdown. It was just the beginning of Fonda-Fultonville's offensive dominance.
Fonda-Fultonville’s Pat Hart looks for running room during Saturday’s game against Cairo-Durham at John G. Boshart Field in Fonda. (The Leader-Herald/Shaun Anich)
"[The Mustangs] were kind of blitzing up inside, so we kind of got the ball to the outside," said Fonda-Fultonville head coach Tom Carpenter.
The strategy worked on Fonda-Fultonville's next drive as quarterback Russ Williams hit Cam Ives streaking down the right sideline for a 43-yard touchdown just before the end of the first quarter. Hart added another touchdown scamper early in the second to push the Braves' lead to 27-0.
Pooters sparked the Cairo-Durham offense following the Braves' fourth touchdown of the game. After completing a 61-yard pass down the sideline, Pooters put together a series of nice runs before finally finding the end zone for the Mustangs' first points of the game. Sinicropi added another rushing touchdown for the Braves before halftime.
The second half saw many of Fonda-Fultonville's starters getting rest on the sidelines thanks to the blowout.
"It's one of those good thing/bad things," said Carpenter. "It's good that we can [rest players] and it's good that we came out of this game healthy, but also they've got to be able to play four quarters some games and if they don't sometimes they don't know if they can do it."
After turning the ball over on downs early in the third, Fonda-Fultonville's Ryan Scofield returned a stripped fumble to put the Braves up 40-6. With Fonda-Fultonville on cruise control, Pooters was able to hook up with Mitchell Kazanjian for a 55-yard score with 1:16 remaining in the game before the Braves knelt the ball three times to secure the blowout victory.
Cairo-Durham is a team that has had trouble fielding a team in recent years, and their inexperience showed on Saturday.
"[Cairo-Durham] played hard," said Carpenter. "They're trying to get their program going so I give them credit for coming and playing hard."
All in all, Fonda-Fultonville forced four Cairo-Durham turnovers including three in the second half. Mitch Hayes had an interception for the Braves and William Furman recovered a fumble early in the fourth quarter.
"I think overall the kids have been playing hard, playing together, and being coachable," said Carpenter. "Watervliet is our focus now and that's who we've got to prepare for."
The Braves will look to push their record to 4-0 next Saturday when they welcome the Cannoneers.
Fonda-Fultonville 40, Cairo-Durham 14
Fonda-Fultonville 20 14 6 0 - 40
Cairo-Durham 0 6 0 8 - 14
FFCS - Sinicropi 1 run (kick failed)
FFCS - Hart 3 run (Hart kick)
FFCS - Ives 43 pass from Williams (Hart kick)
FFCS - Hart 11 run (Hart kick)
C-D - Pooters 4 run (kick failed)
FFCS - Sinicropi 12 run (Hart kick)
FFCS - Scofield fumble return (kick failed)
C-D - Kazanjian 55 pass from Pooters (2 point conversion good)