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Defense, Passing Game Paces Bulls Win
Submitted by Gary Maynard

In a showdown of unbeaten teams, the Poquoson Bull Islanders came away with a tough 20-3 victory over the Warhill Lions on Friday, September 28.

The Bulls defense held the Lions to 206 yards of total offense, and more importantly, never gave up the big play in keeping Warhill out of the endzone.

The two wing-T offenses each tried imposing their will on the other defense with limited success. The difference was in the game was a limited, but effective Poquoson passing attack.

Poquoson quarterback Stephen Parker completed five passes for 70 yards, including touchdown passes of 5 yards to Hunter Schmidt and 20 yards to Bailey Green, which provided enough scoring to send the large, homecoming crowd home with a smile.

"We tackled pretty well and offensively at times we executed when we needed too,” Poquoson coach Elliott Duty said. "We made some blocks, hit some holes, and made some plays when we had too. Really happy with the way we played tonight. Great effort.”

The key moment in the game came early in the second quarter with the Bulls facing a fourth-and-four at the Warhill 34 yard line.

With limited running success thus far in the game, Parker tossed a long pass down the right sideline towards Colten Hicks, who made an outstanding shoe-string catch on a 31-yard reception to the Warhill 3-yard line.

Two plays later, Parker connected with Schmidt for the first Poquoson score, and the Poquoson defense kept the Lions at bay the remainder of the contest.

"They came out and had our wing-T dialed up pretty good, so we knew we had to go to our passing game and execute it,” Parker said. "I knew if I just put it up there, Colten would make a great catch. Same for Bailey, he made a great catch. It was all on my teammates.”

After holding the Lions to three-plays-and-out on the game’s next series, the Bulls turned in their best offensive drive of the game going 67 yards in nine plays.

Green provided most of the offensive fire power on the drive rushing three times for gains of 17, 10 and three yards respectively, and more importantly, hauling in the 20 yard touchdown reception to give the Bulls a 14-3 lead heading into the locker room at halftime.

The second half continued to be a smashmouth defensive struggle with neither offense able to sustain or impose its will on the other defense.

Statistically, the Poquoson defense limited the Warhill offense to only 74 rushing yards in the second half, and the Lions managed only one pass completion over the course of the game.

"We stepped up our defense and we really had too tonight,” Poquoson linebacker Max Barrett said. "It was a tough game, and probably our biggest victory so far this year.”

In addition to hard-hitting defenses, fans were also treated to outstanding place kicking from arguably the two best kickers in the Bay Rivers District.

Warhill senior Fletcher Whalen booted a 25 yard field goal for his team’s only score, and after two Poquoson drives stalled in the second half, Poquoson freshman Ethan Sneddon hammered home kicks of 39 and 30 yards.

"We hit some big plays in the passing game and that was probably the difference,” Duty said. "We can throw it when we want too, I just don’t like doing it.”

Typical during the Bay Rivers football season, each week is another challenge, and next week is no exception as the Bulls travel to Bailey Field to take on the Tabb Tigers.


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