A Windsor Wipeout Over Oxbow

  • The Windsor Yellow Jackets celebrate their win over Oxbow on Saturday, September 10, 2016. The Yellow Jackets shut out the Olympians with a final score of 44-0. (Valley News - John Happel) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Oxbow defensemen tackle Windsor running back, Robert Slocum during the third quarter. Windsor brought in a sixth touchdown during the play, bringing the score to 44-0. (Valley News - John Happel) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Windsor running back, Trevor Worrall, escapes Jacob Stimson during the second quarter to run in a touchdown bringing the score to 37-0. The Yellow Jackets played the Olympians at Oxbow High School in Bradford, Vt. on Saturday, September 10, 2016. (Valley News - John Happel) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Oxbow wide receiver Jacob Stimson gets tackled by Windsor defensemen during the first quarter. Windsor was up by 30 points by the end of the first quarter. (Valley News - John Happel) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Valley News Staff Writer
Saturday, September 10, 2016

Bradford, Vt. — Geographically, Vermont Division III rivals Windsor and Oxbow sit on opposite ends of the Upper Valley.

They were miles apart on the football field as well during the Yellowjackets’ 44-0 win Saturday.

Junior running back Trevor Worrall had 130 yards and two touchdowns on just five carries and QB Seth Balch threw for 84 yards and a score as the dominant Jacks (2-0) steamrolled the undermanned Olympians in Bradford.

Oxbow (0-2) lost dynamic QB/DB Dametres Perry to a concussion on the first defensive series, and the disparity between the programs reared its head from there.

The Olympians were undisciplined both fundamentally and behaviorally — players scolded each other audibly over missed assignments on multiple occasions and the O’s were whistled for two dead-ball personal fouls. Windsor, meanwhile, executed crisply while scoring touchdowns on each of its first five possessions.

The Yellowjackets’ superior speed was a huge factor, evidenced by their four touchdowns of 20 yards or longer, as was the Olympians’ poor open-field tackling.

Worrall’s first touchdown was an 80-yard burst up the middle following his own partially blocked field goal, giving Windsor a 24-0 lead late in the first quarter. Worrall and fellow running backs Jake Tucker (four carries, 59 yards), Hunter Patenaude (two carries, 41 yards, touchdown) and Hunter Judd (four carries, 35 yards, touchdown) found success on the perimeter as well.

“It was a speed game today, and we generally did a good job getting to the edge,” Windsor coach Greg Balch said. “Trevor had a nice run between the tackles, but we didn’t do much else up the middle.”

The Yellowjackets stuck primarily to the ground until their fourth drive, following Balch’s defensive interception of Oxbow freshman backup QB Cooper Simmons.

Balch found Patenaude for 26 yards down the left sideline, hit Tucker for a six-yard gain and connected with Patenaude again for a 22-yard catch-and-run to paydirt.

After three successful 2-point conversions, Windsor’s Robert Slocum kicked his first extra point and it was 31-0 early in the second quarter.

Balch, who didn’t play in the second half, finished 6-of-7 for 84 yards and the score.

“It’s always good to see the offense succeed in more than one way,” Seth Balch said. “It’s helpful when you can add that (passing) aspect to your offense.”

Greg Balch called being two-dimensional a necessity. “We’re going to have to throw the ball to be successful in this division,” he said. “We have a strong running game, but that’s not enough and we understand that.”

It was a disastrous first couple series for Perry, who threw for nearly 800 yards and eight scores a year ago while rushing for another 600 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Perry was smothered for an eight-yard loss on the first play from scrimmage, then fumbled after running for what would have been a first down two plays later.

Windsor’s Caleb Harrington recovered at the Oxbow 40 and the Yellowjackets needed eight plays to score — none of their other scoring drives lasted more than five — culminating when Patenaude went off-tackle left for a six-yard touchdown on third-down-and-goal.

Perry lingered on the ground, his head bowed to his lap. He was later diagnosed with a concussion on the sideline and ruled out for the game.

“It limits us when he’s not out there; I’m not going to lie,” O’s coach Sean Murphy said. “There are a lot of things he does that (our schemes) depend on. So we were kind of shuffling everyone around after he went down.”

Perry’s early exit doesn’t explain Oxbow’s lackluster blocking and tackling — at least it shouldn’t, Murphy said.

“I think we learned that we need to play the same way whether Dametres is out there or not,” the coach said. “Last week (a 28-14 loss at Mill River), we were able to make some plays and play fundamentally sound. Today after (Perry) got hurt, it was like some of our upperclassmen lost a step and forgot to do what we do.”

Murphy lauded the effort of his freshmen, who make up 10 of the 22 players on his roster. Those who played Saturday included Simmons, who completed 7-of-9 passes for 23 yards, and running back Cooper Smith (nine carries, 32 yards), among others.

“We had four or five freshmen get out there today who were just excited to be out on the field,” Murphy said. “They made some mistakes, but played with great effort.”

Extra Points: The Yellowjackets have outscored their first two opponents 99-7. … Worrall, who averaged 26 yards per carry, augmented his 80-yard score with a 43-yard scoring jaunt in the second quarter. Patenaude’s 35-yard rush down the left side on Windsor’s next possession made it 44-0 at halftime. … Siocum was 2-for-3 on PATs while Worrall, Tucker and Balch all ran for 2-point conversions. … Simmons’ longest pass of the day was to sophomore Orin Mahikoa for 15 yards, but the receiver was whistled for a personal foul for pushing off the defender’s helmet on the way off the ground. … Worrall got his paw on Oxbow’s 38-yard field goal attempt in the first quarter. … Jake Stimson led the Olympians with 49 yards on 14 carries. … Second-half Windsor QB Ryland Richardson, a sophomore, finished 1-for-2 for four yards, while classmate Siocum had all of his seven carries for 48 yards in the second half. … The Yellowjackets improved to 8-1 all-time against the Olympians, who are in their 10th varsity season. … Windsor visits neighboring Springfield on Friday night. Oxbow hosts Poultney/Mount St. Joseph next Saturday in its second of three straight home games.

Jared Pendak can be reached at jpendak@vnews.com or 603-727-3225.