Sunday, December 8, 2013
By GREG REID Special to the Press Herald
FALMOUTH - When high school football teams as inexperienced as Falmouth and Spruce Mountain meet up, the difference can come down to which one makes fewer mistakes.
Chalk one up for Spruce Mountain.
The Phoenix, with two returning starters from 2011, got their triple-option offense rolling well enough to beat Falmouth 18-0 in a Western Class B game Friday night.
Sophomore quarterback Peter Theriault completed 5 of 10 passes for 77 yards and a touchdown, and also rushed for 63 yards. Fullback Alwayne Uter rushed 18 times for 94 yards and a touchdown.
Spruce Mountain (1-1) also fumbled five times but lost possession only once to the Yachtsmen (0-2). That was a big change for the Phoenix from an opening 33-0 loss to Greely, when they lost 6 of 13 fumbles and gave up three touchdowns on turnovers. Friday night, they ended up plus-2 on turnovers, with two interceptions by cornerback Patrick Flanagan.
"Our offense is a work in progress," said Spruce Mountain Coach Walter Polky. "Peter is a sophomore, and he's never run the option before. It's a whole lot different between being on the look team and being out there with varsity players coming at you. We're young, but we're getting better."
In a hurry, it seems.
"Their lead blockers executed well, and (Uter) was fast and he made his cuts well," said Falmouth senior linebacker Markus Foley, who finished with several key tackles and recovered a fumble in the second quarter. "We didn't wrap up well; we were throwing shoulders at people and not executing well.
"We'll work hard on that in practice and hopefully next week we'll get the win."
Spruce Mountain went ahead 6-0 when Theriault hit Deonte Ring down the right sideline for a 29-yard touchdown with 2:35 left in the first quarter. The score was set up by three runs by Uter, including a 21-yard gain off left tackle on a pitch. The point-after kick failed.
Flanagan made it 12-0 with a 2-yard run up the middle with 49 seconds left in the half. That capped a 12-play, 69-yard drive.
Uter closed out the scoring with a 1-yard run up the middle with 2:06 left in the third.
The Yachtsmen also have just two starters from last year's squad.
"We're such a young team, we're still making some fundamental mistakes and we're paying a price for it," said Falmouth Coach John Fitzsimmons. "The good news is we're playing our hearts out. As a coaching staff, we have to be patient because we know we'll get better every week."
Sophomore quarterback Noah Nelson completed 7 of 23 passes for 102 yards. Seniors Jacob Buhelt and Alex Derhogopian rushed for 49 and 37 yards, respectively. Buhelt was banged up and left the game in the third quarter.