By Rob Potter
LIBERTY A quick start propelled the Ellenville Blue Devils to victory over the host Liberty Indians on Saturday afternoon in a Section IX Class C football game.
Ellenville (5-0, 4-0 Class C) jumped out to a 22-0 lead in the first quarter on its way to a 36-6 win.
Running back Doug Lewis recorded three touchdowns for the Blue Devils in those first 12 minutes of play. He had TD runs of 23 yards and 55 yards and returned a kickoff for 65 yards. A two-point conversion run by Jose Aldarondo following Lewis’ first scoring run and a safety accounted for Ellenville’s other points in the quarter.
Andrew Platt was credited with the safety when he tackled Liberty’s Brandon Tompkins in the end zone as Tompkins was attempting to punt.
Liberty (1-4, 1-2 Class C) got on the scoreboard early in the second quarter. Marshon Williams capped a nine-play drive with a quarterback sneak on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line.
But Ellenville’s Tyler Hyatt stopped Tompkins short of the goal line on the ensuing two-point conversion attempt.
Ellenville had a 22-6 advantage at halftime.
To begin the second half, the Indians used an onsides kick rather than kicking it deep into Ellenville territory. The ploy worked as Darren Klein recovered the ball to give his team a first down at the Ellenville 38. But the Blue Devils’ defense stopped Liberty on fourth and short.
Ellenville then embarked on an 18-play, 70-yard drive which ended with Andrew Platt’s 1-yard run. Platt also ran for the conversion to boost the Blue Devils’ lead to 30-6 with just 24 seconds remaining in the quarter.
Amiel Maerling scored a touchdown late in the fourth quarter for the final points of the afternoon.
Lewis finished the day with 156 yards on 10 carries to lead the Blue Devils’ rushing attack. Maerling had 42 yards on 11 carries and Platt ran nine times for 34 yards.
In addition to the safety, Platt paced the Ellenville defense with 11 tackles and a half a quarterback sack. Aldarondo had a fumble recovery and half a sack, while Hyatt and Lewis added 11 and 10 tackles, respectively. Michael McGriff also recovered a fumble for the Blue Devils.
Ellenville Coach Tony Borriello praised the Indians’ defense, which stopped two Blue Devil possessions with pass interceptions and also registered a quarterback sack.
“That’s the first time we have been sacked all year,” he said of the play when Liberty defenders Logan Finley and Daniel Ramirez were able to bring down quarterback Robert Borriello (who is Coach Borriello’s son) for an 8-yard loss in the second quarter.
While pleased to get the win and remain undefeated, Coach Borriello noted that “we have work to do.”
He also praised the Liberty players and Coach John Wilhelm, who played for Borriello for three seasons (1985, 1986 and 1987).
“I wish Johnny luck [the rest of the season],” the veteran coach said of his former player.
Wilhelm, who noted that Borriello is a great coach, pointed out that the first quarter was the key to the game.
“We dug ourselves a hole early on,” Wilhelm said.
He is focused on the Indians’ upcoming games and trying to reach sectionals. The top four teams in Class C will qualify for postseason play.
“The next three weeks are important for us,” Wilhelm said. “We have [Class C] games against Pine Plains, Millbrook and Spackenkill. We would like to win all three or at least two of three. Our goal since the beginning of the season has been to reach sectionals.”
Williams led the Liberty ground game with 46 yards on 13 carries. Akeem Granum rushed three times for 29 yards, Chris Soto ran twice for 11 yards and Tompkins ran five times for 4 yards.