Turnovers Cost Vikings Homecoming Victory

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Brant Bloxom hit the truck stick putting a Portsmouth defender to ground on a run in the first half. Photo by Brennan Waldorf.

By Brennan Waldorf

The Broadwater Vikings elected to receive the ball on their homecoming last Saturday Oct. 19 against Portsmouth Christian Academy.

The Vikings first offensive possession started with them moving the chains and advancing the ball but after four plays, which saw Brant Bloxom scrambling twice, there was a fumble. The Vikings fumbled on a run play with Patriots’ Jamel Mallory recovering and running the ball to Broadwater’s 6-yard line.  A run play was the first call by the Patriots and after a bad snap B. Thomas was able to scamper in taking the lead 7-0 with 10:03 on the clock.

The Vikings’ next possession left much to be desired as a pass was tipped on second and 9. They then fumbled on the handoff but managed to recover for a loss of 9 yards. After the punt, Portsmouth found the end zone with a pass on fourth and 4, putting the score at 14-0.

The Vikings received the ball and their drive started with an offside call that put them 5 yards closer to a first down. The weather was cloudy and cold, which mirrored the Vikings’ misfortunes as Brant Bloxom threw his first interception of the day ending another drive with a Viking turnover. The interception by T. Yorkshire resulted in another touchdown for the Patriots, putting them up 21-0 in the first quarter.

The Vikings down but not out would continue to play hard and find the end zone. After eight plays, the Vikings got their first score of the day on a trick play that saw Gunnar Gustafson throw a pass to Bloxom for a 17-yard touchdown bringing the score to 21-6.

The Vikings then attempted a squib kick that was bobbled by the Patriots but ultimately recovered. The Patriots up, would look to run, and they were highly efficient especially up the middle as Thomas ran for 331 yards and four scores on 22 carries.

The Vikings were resilient in their efforts on homecoming and marched down the field again moving the chains as they frequently did. But another costly turnover occurred as Bloxom tried to step up in the pocket delivering a pass that fell short of his open receiver and into the hands of Yorkshire for his second interception of the game.

Broadwater would put a stop to the bleeding as it was able to record a three and out on defense. The Vikings took over on the Patriots’ 45 and would find the end zone after Clay Wardius took his pass 45 yards to the house after leaping over a Portsmouth defender putting the score at 28-12.

The half came to end after two more passing touchdowns to Portsmouth Christians’ Yorkshire, one of them a 60-yarder. The Vikings also found the end zone one more time after a broken coverage pass saw Gustafson score on a catch and run for 45 yards.

The second half didn’t fare well for the homecoming crowd. The Patriots came out running and found room as their first play of the half saw Thomas run 78 yards for a score. The Vikings answered with a score of their own after a sweep to Gustafson found him in the end zone from the Patriot 47. An illegal shift caused the 2-point conversion to fail and the Vikings wouldn’t see the end zone again.

The Patriots closed the game behind the strong legs of Thomas and put the nail in the coffin when Bloxom threw his third pick of the day in the red zone. Yorkshire took the interception 94 yards for a touchdown and the game eventually ended on knee with the Patriots winning 61-26. The Vikings move to 3-4 on the season and will be back in action at home Oct. 26 against a 6-1 St. Michael the Archangel High School.