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Jacks roll past youthful O’s

  • Corey Lockwood, of Windsor, left, breaks the grasp of Oxbow's Ethan Davis, right, in the fourth quarter of their game in Windsor, Vt., Saturday, Sept., 11, 2021. Windsor won 57-6. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Valley News photographs — James M. Patterson

  • Leading 49-0 at the half, Windsor Head Coach Greg Balch prepares a group of underclassmen to take the field against Oxbow in Windsor, Vt., Saturday, Sept., 11, 2021. From left are Landon Mas, Tanner Moody, Jonah Meadows, Brody Osgood, and Corey Lockwood. Windsor won 57-6. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. James M. Patterson

  • Kaleb Swett, of Windsor, kicks off against Oxbow with Greg Tilton at left, and Logan Protzman at right, in the second half of their game in Windsor, Vt., Saturday, Sept., 11, 2021. Windsor won 57-6. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Travis McAllister, of Windsor, runs wide for a touchdown against Oxbow, during the Yellowjackets' 57-6 win over Oxbow in Windsor, Vt., Saturday, Sept., 11, 2021. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Valley News — James M. Patterson

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 9/11/2021 10:13:00 PM
Modified: 9/11/2021 10:13:00 PM

WINDSOR — Windsor High football took control early in Saturday’s game against Oxbow High, and the Yellowjackets cruised to a 57-6 victory at MacLeay-Royce Field.

Windsor (2-0) established a comfortable lead in just five plays from scrimmage. By the middle of the first quarter, the officials switched to a running clock.

As the Yellowjackets blew the game open, head coach Greg Balch told his team on the sideline to keep pushing.

“(I said) don’t let up at all,” Balch said. “Make sure you keep executing well and be ready to play the full 48 minutes.”

Senior Ben Gilbert opened the scoring with a 60-yard touchdown run on the first play. On the first play for Oxbow (0-1), the Olympians fumbled a handoff at their own 5-yard line, and Windsor junior Vance Martin recovered the ball and returned it a touchdown.

After the kickoff, Windsor senior Kaleb Swett intercepted Oxbow junior quarterback Chase Lund. Yellowjackets quarterback Maison Fortin then threw to Swett for a 21-yard TD. On the first play of Oxbow’s next possession, a snap sailed over Lund’s head and a lineman fell on it in the end zone for a Windsor safety.

It was 22-0 Windsor just 1:02 into the game, and the Yellowjackets added another touchdown just over a minute later.

Oxbow head coach Chad Wescott knew the rough start doomed his team quickly.

“Turnovers kill you. I think we had five or six turnovers in the first eight possessions of the game,” Wescott said. “You can’t win football games like that.”

Windsor led, 43-0, by the end of the first quarter, and Balch started to put reserves into the game. With so much time to rotate players through the lineup — and given that Windsor didn’t throw a pass after halftime — a plethora of Yellowjackets were involved in the rushing game. Ten Windsor players recorded a carry, and five rushed for touchdowns.

Gilbert finished as Windsor’s leading rusher, with 80 yards and two touchdowns on two carries as well as a two-point conversion. Senior Keegan Batchelder needed only one carry to finish second, with a 65-yard touchdown run and a two-point conversion.

Balch didn’t have any specific expectations going into the game. He was pleased with the fast start but thought the overall execution could’ve been a little better.

“We’ve got tons that we need to work on,” Balch said. “We’ll see many things on film that we don’t like and that we want to execute better with. Yeah, you’re obviously trying to win the game, but you gotta make sure that you’re getting better at the same time.”

Oxbow’s lone touchdown came on the first play of the fourth quarter on a 41-yard quarterback keeper by Lund.

Wescott wasn’t happy with the amount of mistakes the Olympians made, but he emphasized their inexperience. He said that given last year’s seven-on-seven touch format and having a bye last week, Oxbow hadn’t had a lot of contact before Saturday’s game.

“There’s not a lot of kids (on the roster) that have played varsity football,” Wescott said. “It’s just about getting that contact back on the field. It’s tough. This is one that you gotta look back at the film and break down and just fix the mistakes.”

Windsor’s next matchup is on Friday at Springfield. Oxbow will host Otter Valley on Saturday.

Seth Tow can be reached at stow@vnews.com.




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