Rebels Take Tigers with Second Half Comeback 22-16
Tuesday October 21, 2008
By Mike Cameron
It would be good policy not to mention a particular call in last year’s playoff game between the Tigers and South Burlington Rebels. You might just be in a heated debate. Most Tiger fans feel that a “late whistle” late in that game could very well have cost them a shot at another state Division 1 Title. It was a nip-and-tuck battle right down to the wire with the Rebels knocking the Tigers out of the title tilt and ending their perfect season.
It was a bitter pill to swallow indeed. Hartford eventually closed out the Rebels in the title game and could be back again this year.
South Burlington has fashioned an impressive 5-3 record since that contest and arrived at Doc Collins Field confident that they could once again hold their own against the Tigers who were on a recent surge and sporting a long memory about that last encounter with the Rebels. South Burlington’s attitude about the win at Doc Collins Field last year was naturally quite different. They felt that they had beaten the Tigers fair and square after loosing to them in a rout earlier in the 2007 season. In three contests over two years, this one would be the rubber match, Both teams would have something to prove coming in .
The Rebels have been led by quarterback Ernie Bragg. Bragg is a poised passer and ball handler who can throw on the run or bomb away from the pocket. He has an excellent offensive line in front of him and several talented receivers. Evan Cassidy has also been an offensive threat all year and he would play prominently in this battle on Friday night October 17th 2008. The Rebels defensive unit can be very stingy and they have developed an excellent pass rush. The teams that have beaten them this year have been able to control the ball on offense and keep Bragg and company off the field. South Burlington is also a very physical football team.
Tigers Roar Early but Rebs Answer Late
Cooper Quenville lit the scoreboard early for the 3-5 Tigers on a sparkling 48-yard run and added a 29-yard pass pass-reception from the strong right arm of co-captain Sean Harrison for another. The Tigers seemed to be on a roll. Ross Langyel split the uprights with a 22-yard field goal but the Rebels were not to be deigned.
With his team trailing by a score of 16-7, the South Burlington defensive unit stopped the Tigers on a big 4th down play and the Rebels marched it in with Cassidy finishing off the drive with a short burst to pay dirt. The tally and extra-point made it 16-14 Tigers and they were playing well against the potential passing threat that the Rebels have possessed all year.
With time running out and both coaches doing the arithmetic in their heads the Rebels needed a touchdown to surge ahead with 8:00 left in the fourth quarter. The Tigers would do everything they could to hold them off and get another score of their own.
Evan Cassidy would put the Rebels in front with a 23-yard touchdown run. With the score 22-16, South Burlington would hold off any further Middlebury scoring threats to seal the deal. Final score Rebels 22, Tigers 16.
South Burlington now moves to 6-2 overall this season. The Tigers are 3-5 and will finish out the season at B.F.A. Saint Albans on Friday night, October 31st 2008.