BRATTLEBORO -- If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.
That was Champlain Valley Union’s way of thinking on Friday evening at Natowich Field, as the Red Hawks ran a zone read play all night long and outscored host Brattleboro, 28-7.
With quarterback Steele DuBrul either giving the ball to tailback Patrick Shea or else faking the handoff and taking off with it himself, the duo finished with 30 carries for 367 yards. And much of the credit goes to the five linemen in front of them, including Peter Wernhoff, Harvey Ottinger, Alec Distler, Timmy Halvorson and Cade Knudson -- a group that averages 233 pounds per blocker.
It was the Colonels that stole a 7-0 lead with 6:16 left in the opening quarter. The 24-yard drive was set up by Tyler Higley’s interception. The Brattleboro quarterback would then hook up with Elliot Gragen on a 22-yard pass play and eventually sneak the ball into the house on a fourth-and-goal play.
Following a 56-yard keeper by DuBrul late in the quarter, it looked like the visitors would surely pull even. But the CVU quarterback was denied on back-to-back keepers from the BUHS goal line.
Ottinger, who plays middle linebacker for CVU, made things difficult for the hosts the rest of the way. He finished the game with three sacks and a tackle for loss.
After the goal-line stand, the home fans didn’t have much to cheer about -- aside from another pick by Higley and a couple
The Red Hawks pulled even midway through the second quarter. After three-straight runs by Shea, DuBrul kept the ball on another zone read play and rumbled 54 yards to paydirt.
That was just the beginning of 28 unanswered points by CVU. DuBrul scored on an eight-yard keeper to help his team take a 14-7 lead to the break, he added a 45-yard scoring run in the third and connected with Ryan Beaudry for a five-yard TD strike in the fourth.
DuBrul paced the winners with 304 rushing yards and seven completions for 96 more. Higley completed 14 passes for 111 yards to lead the Brattleboro offense and also picked off two tosses to anchor the defense. End Trenton Fletcher chipped in with a sack and a couple of hurries.
The 0-2 Colonels will play at Rutland on Friday at 7 p.m.
In other Division 1 matchups Friday, Essex edged Middlebury 21-20, Hartford routed BFA-St. Albans 33-7 and South Burlington whipped MAU 52-7.
Shane Covey can be reached at email@example.com or by calling 802-254-2311, ext. 163.