Indians’ football bested by Bulldogs

Date Published: 
Oct. 27, 2017

Laurel Star photos • Mike McClure: IR’s Jalen Snead hauls in a pass from quarterback Ian Shaner during Saturday’s 17-0 loss in Laurel.Laurel Star photos • Mike McClure: IR’s Jalen Snead hauls in a pass from quarterback Ian Shaner during Saturday’s 17-0 loss in Laurel.The Indian River High School offense was able to bend, but not break the Laurel defense in last Saturday’s varsity football game in Laurel as the Indians looked to snap a five-game losing streak that’s denied them a W since the first game of the regular season. But the Bulldogs came away with a 17-0 Homecoming win to take them to 3-4 on the season.

The Laurel offense moved the ball to the Indian River 45-yard line before punting on the first possession of the game. On 3rd-and-6 from the 30, IR quarterback Ian Shaner completed an 18-yard pass to Jalen Snead. But on 2nd-and-3 from the Laurel 45, the Bulldogs’ Devantay Clanton dropped Shaner for a 5-yard loss, and Laurel’s Dylan Dukes and Kevon Williams later added a sack to force the Indians to punt.

Indian River’s defense forced another Laurel punt, giving the Indians offense the ball on their own 40. Reshawn Turner had a 15-yard run to the Laurel 29, and Shaner completed a 16-yard pass to Jason Killen on 3rd-and-12 from the Laurel 31, but Shaner’s pass on 4th-and-8 from the 13 fell incomplete, giving the ball back to Laurel.

The Bulldogs’ Ja’Mir Townsend moved the chains with a 9-yard run on 3rd-and-6 from the 17. A Dalton Perdue run and a face-mask penalty set up 1st-and10 on the 45. Williams had a 12-yard run and later caught a 15-yard pass from Perdue. Laurel went for a field goal on 4th-and-12 from the Indians’ 18, and kicker Wilder Gonzalez-Perez connected on a 35-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead with 3:59 left in the first half.

Laurel’s offense got the ball back after Andrew Risper held the IR runner to 1-yard gain on 4th-and-3 from the 45. Laurel’s Rae’Mier DeShields picked up 8 yards on 3rd-and-4 from the Indians’ 40. But Indian River’s Brandon Cheety later hauled in an interception on a tip, though the score remained 3-0 going into half-time.

Indian River opened the second half with the ball on the 30-yard line. Shaner completed a 15-yard pass to Snead, but a sack by Laurel’s Blake Anderson set up 3rd-and-22 from the 33. Shaner completed a 24-yard pass to Kevin Custis for the first down, but the Indians were later forced to punt. Indian River’s Richard Rybicki recovered a Laurel fumble on the punt to put the ball back in the hands of the IR offense.

The Bulldogs’ Risper forced a fumble, which was recovered by Laurel’s Dukes; however, Laurel was called for a face-mask penalty. The Indians later punted the ball, giving the Bulldogs possession on their own 12.

Williams took a pitch from Perdue and gained 17 yards on 3rd-and-5 from the 17, and Eric Pilot caught a pass on 3rd-and-8 from the 36 and broke tackles on his way to a 64-yard touchdown reception. The Bulldogs’ Gonzalez-Perez booted the extra point for a 10-0 Laurel lead with 4:05 left in the third quarter.

Following a long kick return that gave the Indians the ball on Laurel’s 32 yard-line, IR’s Turner had a 9-yard run, and Shaner completed an 18-yard pass to Killen to set up 1st-and-goal from the 7. DeShields held Custis to a 1-yard gain on 2nd-and-goal from the 7, and the pass on third down was incomplete. Laurel was called for pass interference on 4th-and-goal from the six, but Turner was dropped for a 2-yard loss on 4th-and-goal from the 3.

Laurel’s offense was pinned deep in its own territory and was forced to punt. Indian River then started with the ball on the Laurel 39. Dukes recorded a sack on 2nd-and-10, but Shaner completed a 19-yard pass to Snead for the first down. Following an Indian penalty, Anderson tipped a pass, and the pass on 3rd-and-16 fell incomplete. Shaner found Custis on 4th-and-16, with Townsend stopping him 3 yards shy of a first down.

The Bulldogs put the game away with a drive on the next series. Townsend had a 17-yard run and DeShields added five carries for 37 yards. Williams capped the drive with a 14-yard touchdown run and Gonzalez-Perez added the PAT for the 17-0 advantage (9:51).

Next up, the Indians — now at 1-6 on the season after a six-game losing streak — will take on the 5-2 Milford Buccaneers on Friday, Oct. 27, at home in Dagsboro, starting at 7 p.m.