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Indians can't capitalize against West Perry

September 08, 2007|By CHRIS CARTER

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - The opportunities were plenty for the Waynesboro football team Friday night against West Perry. It was the conversions to those chances that became scarce.

The Waynesboro defense set the table by forcing five turnovers - three in West Perry territory - but the offense struggled to convert the short-field situations in a 22-13 Mid-Penn nondivision loss at Rip Engle Stadium.

"Any time you force five turnovers you ought to win the game," said Indians coach Darwin Seiler. "We couldn't capitalize on the opportunities that we had at their end. We just couldn't get in."

Waynesboro (0-2) drove to the West Perry 7-yard line on the game's opening drive before the failing to convert on fourth-and-3. The Indians got the ball back after Mustangs quarterback Bruce McCown fumbled on his first play from scrimmage - recovered by Aaron McKenzie - to give the Indians a first-and-goal from the West Perry 8. But after three plays netted just one yard, Ian Smith's field goal from 25 yards went wide right.

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It wasn't until Marcus Brown intercepted a pass to set up Waynesboro at the West Perry 31 that the Indians finally scored. On the ensuing play, Smith outran the defense to the front right corner of the end zone - his fourth touchdown in two games - to give Waynesboro a 7-0 lead with 5:26 left in the first quarter.

"If you come back and score on the third time like we did, I don't think it puts doubt in anyone's minds," Seiler said. "But what it does do is let the other team hang around long enough to get something going."

West Perry's first two offensive plays were turnovers and the Mustangs (1-1) punted after just three plays on their third possession. They cashed in on their fourth series after Zach Rice's 32-yard punt return set them up at the Waynesboro 25. Two plays later - on third-and-14 - McCown found a crossing Eric Stone for a 29-yard touchdown to knot the game at 7-7 with 10:54 left in the first half.

Waynesboro forced two more turnovers before halftime - a Marvin Gaskill fumble recovery and Brown's second interception. Both drives started inside the Indians 20 and both drives went nowhere.

Meanwhile, West Perry settled in and turned the ball over just once while reaching paydirt twice in the second half. Corey Weaver scored on runs of 6 and 7 yards and a Waynesboro safety in between gave the Mustangs a 22-7 lead. The Mustangs controlled the ball by rushing for 286 yards - led by Chaz Shaeffer's 130 yards. McCown scrambled for 82 yards and Weaver had 59.

Waynesboro picked up just one first down in five second-half drives before finally getting back on the board with 20 seconds left. Terrell Rickard hit McKenzie for a 32-yard touchdown to close the scoring at 22-13.

Rickard threw for 80 yards with two interceptions - both on tipped balls by his wide receivers - while rushing for 83 yards. Ian Smith added 66 yards on the ground.

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