BY YANEEK SMITH, BEACON CONTRIBUTOR
HOLGATE — After missing its game last week, Danbury was eager to get its first 8-man football win of the season on Friday night. The Lakers took care of that, dominating Holgate in a 40-0 win.
Jacob Mischler, Andy Zelms and Cade McCarthy all had great performances, and scored a combination of five touchdowns. Mischler completed 5-of-6 passes for 177 yards and two touchdowns while carrying the ball six times for 27 yards and a score. McCarthy carried the ball nine times for 119 yards and a touchdown. Zelms caught two passes for 141 yards and two scores.
“Cade played hard. He’s been extremely consistent for us. In the first week, he averaged seven yards per carry,” said Danbury coach Keith Mora. “Jacob had a nice night. He threw for 177 yards and three touchdown passes, and Andy caught two touchdowns for us.
“When people think about us, they think of us as a running team. This situation gave us the opportunity to throw the ball.”
The Lakers (1-1) opened the scoring when Mischler connected with Zelms on a 60-yard screen pass to go ahead 8-0 following the two-point conversion, and pushed the lead to 16-0 after another screen pass to Zelms covered 81 yards and went for a score.
At the end of the first half, Mischler found Wyatt Caskey on a 30-yard touchdown pass on fourth down to push the lead to 24-0. Danbury never looked back.
“It felt closer than it was. We had a touchdown in the first quarter, and Holgate spent a lot of time on offense,” said Mora. “We probably lost the time of possession battle, because it felt like we were on defense quite a bit.
“With about 15-20 seconds before halftime, we had a fourth down at Holgate’s 30-yard-line and we hit one over the top for a touchdown and it put us ahead, 24-0. We were fortunate enough to be up three touchdowns.
“In the second half, it was just about not having any turnovers. When you’re ahead, if you don’t turn the ball over, you should be alright. We were fortunate enough that we were able to put a few more quarters of football together.”
Mora was very pleased with his defense pitching a shutout. Elijah Hatfield led the team with eight tackles, McCarthy had seven tackles and Guy Maltese finished with four tackles and an interception. Danny Harris had three tackles and a sack and D.J. Webster and Tyler Harris both recovered a fumble.
“The defense played extremely hard. We hadn’t played a football game or had any practices in 12 days. We were doing all that we could to keep them out of the end zone. The linebackers were flying to the ball and we did a nice job,” said Mora.
“I just said after the game that it was great to get that one off our backs. I told them I was proud of them, we were back in the win column. I want them to enjoy themselves.”
The Lakers host Toledo Christian on Friday at 7 p.m.
Way to go Lakers!