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Rebels can't control ball, Indians roll

September 15, 2007|By BOB PARASILITI

BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. - The South Hagerstown football team had a simple objective - control the football game.

That became far-fetched though, since the Rebels couldn't manage to honor the first three words of that motto - control the ball.

Berkeley Springs used South's generosity and its own proven running game on Friday to barrel over the Rebels 56-22 in a game that more resembled a greased-pig contest than a game of pigskin.

The two teams combined for 15 fumbles - each side losing four - but South's came early and often to give the Indians all the short-field opportunities they needed to put the game away early.

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"I knew we were going to have to play good defense to win this game," South's interim coach Ralph Stottlemyer said. "But I didn't expect us to have our backs against the wall as often as we did."

South's defense was so backed up, it could have been peeled off the wall like a Fathead collectible. The Rebels lost the first three of their six first-half fumbles and each gave the Indians a short field to drive on and led to a Berkeley Springs touchdown.

The Indians' vaunted running-back tandem of Cody Hess and Cody Reed - the main reasons the Rebels wanted to control the game - controlled it themselves. Each scored three touchdowns and were out of the game after Berkeley Springs' first play in the third quarter.

The Indians' first four touchdowns came in a span of 13 minutes, 18 seconds off of three Rebels fumbles and a botched punt. The four scoring drives combined covered 95 yards and only took 2:28.

"We're not going to give those back," Berkeley Springs coach Angelo Luvara said. "We were pretty efficient tonight. We have been playing pretty efficient."

Reed, who carried four times for 63 yards, put up the Indians' first three scores on runs of 12, 30 and 16 yards for a 21-0 lead. Hess followed with scoring runs of 7 and 4 yards on the next two possessions to make it 35-0.

South got a quick shout in with 49 seconds remaining in the half when Wes Samples hit Cory Shank on a 54-yard scoring strike to move within 27 points, but the Indians quickly put an end to any thoughts of switching momentum when Sam Byrne ran the ensuing kickoff up the middle for 83 yards and a touchdown.

The Indians put the final exclamation point on the performance by taking the second-half kickoff and scoring on the first play - a 32-yard run by Hess for the 49-8 lead.

Berkeley Springs took its starters off the field at that point after scoring seven touchdowns on just 184 yards of offense.

Samples hit Shank on a 67-yard score against the Indians' second-string defense in the third quarter and quarterback Nick Gross ran in from 21 yards for South's other score.

The Indians finished with 253 yards for the game to 228 for the Rebels, 121 of them coming on Samples' two passes.

"We didn't hold on to the ball," Stottlemyer said. "We can't turn the ball over like that and expect to be in the game."

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