spartans football

Story and Images by Erich Eichhorn (ISN)

October 16, 2012, victoria, BC – The Victoria Spartans midget football team battled the visiting Vancouver Trojans at Goudy Field last Sunday afternoon under monsoon weather conditions, beating the Trojans 19-11.

Under frequent torrential downpours, the 4-2 Spartans came into Sunday’s game looking to make up some ground on their competition as 5 teams vie for 2nd place in the VFML with only three games remaining in the regular season.

Brent Bain shrugs off a Trojan tackler running for extra yardage – Erich Eichhorn image ( )

The Trojans would come out of the gate start strong in the first quarter, establishing a running game to the outside that would catch the Spartans big D-line by surprise, eventually backing them up in their own end. The Spartans “bigs” would find their stride in time to hold the Trojans to the 20 yard line, forcing Vancouver to settle for a field goal and the first 3 points on the scoreboard.

#15 Ian Mitchell gets a hand on the Trojans QB during action Sunday afternoon VFML action – Erich Eichhorn image ( )

The Spartans would reply back quickly under the command of starting QB Lowell McDonald. With players being pelted by relentless rain showers negating a reliable passing game, McDonald would move his team methodically down field with a ground attack, with #5 Brent Bain and #24 Derek Morgan getting most of the Trojan attention, pounding the ball through the Trojan front line. McDonald would call the ball his own from the Trojan 2 yard line and scamper to the end zone finishing with a diving leap into the house putting the Spartans up 7-3 at the end of the first quarter.

Under monsoon-like conditions Spartans Alper Ozcetin takes on his giant opponent – Erich Eichhorn image ( )

In the second quarter, with both teams braving more than just the elements, each would continue running the ball at each other, both defensive lines making big plays to keep the score close. Late in the 2nd quarter the Spartans #23 Taylor Young would take a McDonald handoff, running for 15 yards and setting up teammate Derek Morgan for a 6 yard rushing play capping a solid Spartans first half. Score 13-3 for the Spartans.

The second half would see little action offensively from either team, as both the Trojans and Spartans would find it difficult to hold onto the slick pigskin, turning over ball possession on some big hits and miscues. In a rare passing play on the afternoon, McDonald would throw a 20 yard strike to #22 Mike Peverell down the sidelines. Peverell would do the rest, running past would be tacklers for the Spartans third touchdown of the afternoon, putting the “Gold and Black” ahead with a commanding 19-3 lead. The Trojans would find a way to breath some life into their offence when a Spartans missed low snap would bounce past the Spartans kicker, hemming the Spartans in their own end.

#23 Taylor Young would prove a tough customer for this Trojan defender – Erich Eichhorn image ( )

The Trojans would finally find the end zone late in the third quarter to make the game close at 19-9 with a missed convert attempt. The Spartans would find themselves unprepared in the fourth quarter, as the Trojans would back up the Spartans on a “hurry up” offence that caught their defense off guard. With the visiting team knocking on the end zone door, # 50 Alper Ozcetin would come up huge as he would be left all alone to chase the Trojans QB back for a 15 yard loss, putting the Trojans out of scoring position on 3 down and 21 yards to go possession.

Spartans QB Lowell McDonald stiff-arms this Trojan tackler, allowing him to scramble to the outside – Erich Eichhorn image ( )

The Spartans defense would follow Ozcetin’s lead, pushing a weary Trojan offense back repeatedly. The frustrated Trojans would implode under the Spartans pressure, giving up an interception, a fumble, and a misconduct penalty, all within the last 4 minutes of play and giving the Spartans a decisive team win and improving their record to 5-2. Final score 19-11 Spartans.

The midget Spartans will finish their regular season at home vs the North Surrey Bears on November 4th.

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