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Mill River Quarterback Runs and Throws Past Jacks

Windsor — Mill River quarterback Mark Goyette rushed for four touchdowns and passed for two more in the Minutemen’s 56-6 win at Windsor Saturday, but there was one play that pretty much illustrated the senior’s passing ability.

During Mill River’s first possession, the Minutemen were faced with a third-and-13 on their own 21 when Goyette launched a sky ball that floated down the sideline to his left. When the ball came earthward it sailed over the shoulder of Lance Pritchard and nestled his hands while in stride.

That play was good for 49 yards and led to the first of many Mill River touchdowns.

“We think highly of him,” said Goyette’s coach, Art Peterson. “He’s been our quarterback for three seasons.”

It was the Vermont Division III opener for both teams and the first game for new Windsor coach Greg Balch. And not only was the defeat not a happy moment for the Yellowjackets, they also lost all-purpose back Russell Simonds to what appeared to be a collarbone injury. He rode an ambulance to the hospital and did not return.

It was not the kind of opener Balch was hoping for, and the injury will probably not help in the weeks ahead. When someone mentioned the Jacks did not have a lot of depth at that position, Balch replied, “We don’t have any depth at any position.”

While it was an easy win for Mill River ,it was not a particularly clean victory as the Minutemen absorbed a rash of penalties, particularly in the first half.

“Those were not great penalties, but we are a team that tends to be penalized a lot,” said Peterson.

Following the first Mill River score and a Goyette 2-point conversion pass for an 8-0 lead, Windsor gave the home crowd something to cheer about when Simonds caught a 10-yard TD pass from Tyson Boudro to make it an 8-6 game.

“We made some plays early, and I thought we had a lot kids step up,” Balch said. “I just we could have gotten more pressure on the quarterback.”

Balch also could have said he wished his team tackled better on Mill River’s second possession of the second quarter. Goyette, on a sweep, was hit twice and he was seemingly about to be stopped, but he broke from both engagements and raced into the end zone from 38 yards out.

The game started to get away as Mill River scored twice more before the half as Goyette showed off his accurate arm again. On a third-and-15 from his own 40, he hit Pritchard on the run at the 1-yard line for a 59-yard completion. Goyette took it in himself to make it 20-6. It got to 27-6 before the half when Goyette passed 35 yards to Dan Blanchard.

It was a very humid day at MacLeay-Royce Field, and as the game progressed it appeared to take its toll on the short-handed Jacks as Mill River scored on its first two possessions of the third quarter, Goyette scoring both on runs from the 4 and the 8. The 8-yard score was set up by an interception return to the 11 by 245-pound defensive lineman Jimmy Collins.

When Goyette passed to Chris Patch to bring the score to 46-6, the running clock was put into play and the only scoring the rest of the way was a pass from Mike Morgan, Mill River’s reserve quarterback, to Cody Cook.

Ethan Hill led Windsor with 63 yards rushing on 21 carries.