Leopards too fast
By Michael Brooks
“Van Vleck is a fast team,” Derrick Cann said. “One of the fastest in out district, if not the fastest.”
When the Industrial Cobras took the field on Friday night against the Leopards, they knew their biggest challenge would be slowing down the speed of the fast cats.
Although the Cobras were able to keep the game close in the first half, the Leopards used that speed to break open several big plays to run away with a 54-20 victory.
“To defend against their speed, our motto all week was to ‘build a fence,’ but that’s hard to do when they have so many kids that run fast,” Industrial head coach Kensey Allen said. “We missed some key opportunities, and we have to improve our tackling. At the end of the game, there is always that ‘should-a, could-a, would-a.’ I was very impressed with the way our kids played but by the end of the game we got beat down a little bit and ran out of gas.”
On the first drive of the game, Van Vleck put together a 60-yard drive to take a 6-0 lead. Their first big play of the night was the 33-yard touchdown run that capped off the drive.
The Cobras immediately answered back when Cann fielded the ensuing kickoff at the Cobra 15-yard line and then spun off of a Leopard defender and ran over some more en route to an 85-yard return for a touchdown that tied the score at six.
Cann stopped the following Van Vleck drive with an interception at the Cobra three-yard line, giving the Industrial offense the ball for the first time in the game. But the drive stalled and the ball went back to Van Vleck.
The first quarter ended with the Leopards at the Cobra one-yard line, and quarterback Javante Easton ran it in on a keeper for the first play of the second quarter. After a successful two point conversion, the Leopards took a 14-6 lead.
In the second quarter, the Leopards ran back a punt for what looked like a 95-yard touchdown, but it was nullified on a penalty. A few plays later Easton rectified the mistake and connected on an 87-yard touchdown pass, giving the Leopards took a 20-6 lead.
On their next drive, the Van Vleck halfback burst through the line and 88 yards later -after a successful two point conversion- the Leopards had a 28-6 lead.
The Cobras finally put together a drive at the end of the first half.
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