Thursday, May 23, 2013
BY DAVE DYER
GARDINER -- Offense, defense and special teams win football games.
Photo by Jeff Pouland FINDING THE ENDZONE: Gardiner Area High School's Seth Wing scampers into the endzone for a first-half touchdown during Friday's night's game in Gardiner against Morse High School. Looking on is Morse High School's Scott Peterson (42) and D'Vaughn Myers (1).
On Friday night, Dennis Meehan provided all three.
Meehan accounted for 25 of Gardiner's 31 points, as well as 131 total yards (67 passing, 64 rushing) as the Tigers beat Morse 31-8 in a Pine Tree Conference B game at Hoch Field.
"It's just one step at a time and we want to go as far as we can," Meehan said. "First game at home, this is what we wanted to do."
Meehan, a senior, accounted for all of his points in the first half, 14 of which came on the first two drives of the game.
"He's a great athlete," Morse head coach Jason Darling said.
On offense, Meehan, a quarterback, capped the first drive of the game with a 52-yard touchdown on a sweep, then provided the extra point to give Gardiner (2-0) a 7-0 lead.
"I just saw open grass," Meehan said. "I saw the block in front of me and that was it. The rest was history."
On the next series, while playing cornerback, Meehan stepped in front of a Kevin McKellar pass, intercepted it and returned it 55 yards for a touchdown. His extra point made it 14-0.
"It just tipped off his fingers and it was there for a play," Meehan said.
After forcing a three and out on the next series, the Gardiner offense marched down the field again, and Meehan topped it off with a 21-yard pass to wide receiver Tyler Jamison to give the Tigers a 21-0 lead in the first quarter.
But the Tigers were far from done. In the second quarter, Gardiner scored on the first drive of the second quarter, as a 46-yard pass from Meehan to Jamison set up a 9-yard touchdown run up the gut by running back Seth Wing. Meehan's extra point made the score 28-0.
On the next series, Meehan got the opportunity to show off his strong kicking leg. With the holder set up in the middle of the field, Meehan nailed a 40-yard field goal to stretch the lead to 31-0.
"It felt good," Meehan said.
Gardiner headed into the locker room at halftime with the 31-0 lead.
The Tigers went on cruise control in the second half, mostly on the legs of running backs Steve Sirois, Tyler Caron and Jeff Abram. Sirois finished with 89 rushing yards, while Caron had 57 yards and Abram had 40 yards.
Darling said he was surprised by the physical play of the Tigers.
"I didn't think they were as physical as they were up front and they were very aggressive tonight," Darling said.
The lone score for Morse came on a fumble recovery in the end zone in the fourth quarter. Shipbuilders running back D'Vaughn Myers took a sweep 25 yards to the 1-yard line before fumbling, and Scott Peterson recovered the ball for the score. McKellar scored the 2-point conversion on a bootleg to bring the score to 31-8.
Morse (1-1) was able to fling the ball through the air, finding soft spots in the middle of the Tigers' coverage, allowing McKellar to finish with 202 passing yards and wide receiver Keegan Drouin with 141 receiving yards.
Dave Dyer -- 621-5639