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Indians don't get much luck with Shamrocks

October 22, 2005|By CHRIS CARTER

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Before fielding any questions about Friday night's Mid-Penn Capital game against Trinity, Waynesboro coach Darwin Seiler summed up his team's performance with one short phrase.

"Turnovers and missed tackles."

That combination plagued Waynesboro from the start and the Indians never got it under control in falling to the Shamrocks 37-22 at Rip Engle Stadium.

On the game's opening possession, Trinity's running backs shedded Waynesboro's defenders, seemingly at will, to turn in the first score with the game just three minutes old. Mike Connolly capped the drive with a 10-yard touchdown run.

Waynesboro offered up even more help when it had the ball. The Indians' first play from scrimmage was intercepted by Trinity's Tony Torchia and returned to the 16-yard line, setting up a 41-yard field goal by Jim Murphy to up the lead to 10-0.

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The Indians ran three plays before coughing the ball up for the second time. An option exchange between quarterback Alex Barone and tailback Mike McKenzie was mistimed, causing the ball to fall to the ground before being pounced on by the Shamrocks. On the ensuing play Jamal Smith ran a QB keeper 40 yards into the end zone for a 17-0 lead with 4:24 still remaining in the first quarter.

"We gave them the first one and held them to a field goal. Then we give it right back and give them a touchdown," Seiler said. "That puts a boatload of momentum on their side early in the game."

But like they have done so many times this season the Indians responded. And like so many times, the charge was led by McKenzie.

The next two Waynesboro drives spanned 25 plays and 146 yards. McKenzie accounted for 108 of those yards on 20 carries, including two touchdowns that pulled the Indians to within 17-15. McKenzie went on to carry 39 times for 242 yards and three touchdowns.

"We definitely feel fortunate to come out with a win after what (McKenzie) did tonight," said Trinity coach Jeff Boger. "He's a tough running back and he's a kid who has a lot of good things ahead of him."

But even McKenzie couldn't offset the troubles that stunted a Waynesboro comeback. The inconsistent tackling allowed Trinity to consistently move the chains with the running game. The Shamrocks finished with 296 yards rushing, led by Connolly's 112 yards.

"I really wish I knew what it was that we were doing in tackling," Seiler said. "It's frustrating because we work on tackling all the time in practice."

Waynesboro missed several opportunities for sacks, as Smith dodged oncoming linemen each time, usually resulting in either a long scramble or an open receiver. Smith finished with 138 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns.

"Smith didn't do anything different from what we saw on the film. We just couldn't stop him," Seiler said.

It just wasn't the Indians' night. Their lone penalty of the game at the end of the first half called back a 40-yard touchdown run by McKenzie that would have kept the Indians within two points at halftime.

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