Flag football teams surging

Wednesday, September 28, 2011 - 20:00
Chugiak, ER each go 2-0 with back-to-back shutouts
Chugiak receiver Elyse Perez sees a pass sail just high as a West defender looks on.

Both Eagle River and Chugiak continued their midseason surges last week as both improved to 6-4 with a pair of wins.

It took just one drive for Eagle River to put enough points on the board to defeat Service 7-0 in Cook Inlet Conference flag football play Friday, Sept. 23 at Tom Huffer Sr. Stadium.

Eagle River had almost an identical victory against South Anchorage on Sept. 20. The Wolves, who won 6-0, scored on their first drive when Skylar Metzel took a long reception in for a score. Neither team reached the end zone for the rest of the game.

“We’ve been doing that all year,” Eagle River head coach Matt Turner said. Several of the Wolves games this season have been decided by one touchdown or less, he said.

After keeping the drive alive with a fourth-down scamper to move the chains against Service, quarterback Lauren Frost — on fourth-and-goal — dumped a screen pass to Paulette Mordini, who took it to the end zone midway through the first quarter. A Frost conversion put Eagle River up 7-0. Those were the game’s only points.

Service had a chance to tie the game on its final possession. With just 41.9 seconds left, the Cougars started at their own 40-yard line.

A 38-yard halfback pass plus an Eagle River penalty put Service on the Wolves’ 7-yard line with 0.6 seconds to go. Time expired and both teams retreated to their sidelines, however, because of the infraction, the girls came back onto the field for the game’s final play.

Service completed a pass in the end zone, but the receiver was ruled out of bounds and Eagle River escaped with the victory.

Chugiak, meanwhile, earned a 6-0 overtime win over East on Sept. 20 and then crushed West 33-0 on Sept. 23.

Chugiak’s defense has been particularly impressive. Andre Samaniego had an interception return for a touchdown for the only score against East, and the Mustangs returned three picks for scores against West.

Sierra Humphrey returned two interceptions for scores, and Sam Perez took another to the house.

“We’re starting to have a different mindset,” Humphrey said.

Chugiak also got touchdowns from Samaniego and Tracie Haken in the game.

Chugiak coach Jon Schroeder said the team seems to be picking up the game more and more as the season wears on.

“They’re starting to get it,” Schroeder said.

As a case in point, Schroeder said he and assistant Tom Huffer Sr. spent much of the previous week in practice working to get defenders to break on thrown ball rather than waiting for the pass to come to them.

“We told them to go get it,” he said.

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