Saturday, October 6, 2012
Cougars Roll 49-13 Over Pelham
The big game in Division V on Friday night was played over on the seacoast between 2 playoff bound teams - the Somersworth Hilltoppers and the Stevens Cardinals. Meanwhile, flying under the radar over in North Sutton was the hottest team in the division scoring over 40 points for the 4th straight game. The Cougars of Kearsarge were taking care of business in a 49-13 dismantling of the Pelham Pythons. After a slow 1-1 start on the season the Cougars are averaging 47.5 points over the last 4 games.
Coach Zach Matthews, who played quarterback at Plymouth State in his college days has the Cougar running game hitting on all cylinders. They rolled up close to 500 yards running the football even with JV's taking the field mid way through the 3rd quarter. The Cougars have an all senior backfield led by #34 Ollie Gallo who rushed for 172 yards on 13 carries and 2 TD's. Gallo's backfield mate, the equally as talent #32 Eric Hauck rushed for 149 yards 3 touchdowns on only 8 carries.
The fullback duties are shared by the senior's #33 Jordan Barthol and #44 Jacob Jones. When these 2 bruisers aren't opening huge holes on offense they are leading the team in tackles on the defensive side of the ball at linebacker. Both of these backs don't mind getting the tough yards up the middle keeping the opposing teams defense honest in their keys.
Pelham having a tough season in division 5 off to a 1-4 start put a early scare into the Cougars. On the 2nd play from scrimmage #13 Pelham's top running back Kevin Cheam got to the left sidelines and raced 77 yards for a quick score and an early Pelham lead 7-0. The Cougars didn't take long to answer with Hauck going 23 yards on their first possession tying the score at 7-7.
Outside of a couple penalties the Cougar running game was unstoppable in the first half. They scored on all 5 of their possessions while taking a 34-7 halftime lead. The second half after one more score by the starters saw both JV squads get some varsity experience.
The Cougars have a bye next week and 2 weeks to prepare for a huge D-V match up with the Monadnock Huskies. These 2 teams on paper are mirror images of each other. They both play the same style of football. Both teams are loaded with senior leadership. The difference in the game outside penalties and turnovers, maybe the passing game. Both teams are not big fans of throwing the ball but they both have solid senior quarterback play. Peter Allen, the Cougar signal caller and the Huskies Will Kitterman maybe the difference makers. Someone is going to have to come up with a big pass to separate these 2 teams who love to run the football. The NH Notebook will be in the house for this potential barn burner.
I asked coach Matthews after the game what the overall health of his football team was going into the tail end of the season and some huge games left to be played.
"We are as healthy as we have been all year. We had had some kids nicked up early in the season but now with 2 weeks to get ready for our next game we are in great shape."
This Cougar team has the 3 H's - they are healthy, hot, and hungry to make a run at their second championship in the last 3 years. The Cougars who won it all back in 2010 were lead by the D-V player of the year Doug Gregory. What a lot of people forget is they started several sophomores on that championship team. Those sophomores are now mature seniors who shave and drive to school. They want a championship that they can call their own!