Cougars steamroll Knights
Cougars steamroll Knights
NORTH PROVIDENCE - It was over almost before it started.
Bevin Ingram took the opening kickoff for the North Providence High School football team on his own 13-yard line. He started up the right side of the field, caught a couple of blocks, and then, seeing his path blocked, cut sharply to the left all the way to the opposite sidelines.
He turned the corner, and as he has done all season, simply out-ran all defenders on his way to an 87-yard touchdown run. Quarterback Ian Brown added the two-point conversion on a sneak and it was 8-0 over last-place Providence Country Day.
The game was 16 seconds old.
When it was finished, the Cougars had amassed 54 points on the way to a 54-6 win, their third in as many Division III outings, and they could have scored more.
Head coach Glenn Williams started pulling out his starters in the second quarter, but by then the Cougars had rolled in 41 points.
"The rest of the game is going to be about the younger kids getting playing time," said assistant coach Joe Amado.
The offensive explosion even left Williams surprised because his North Providence team has been averaging slightly more than 48 points per game in division play.
"Yes, I'm surprised by it," said Williams. "I knew that we had an experienced line coming into the season, with everyone coming back from last year, but I wasn't sure about the rest. They've really been playing well. After the (non-league) Classical game, we made some adjustments and they've worked."
Leading the charge has been Ingram, who piled in three more touchdowns during the game and has 10 six-pointers in three league contests.
Ingram accounted for 307 total yards of offense, including a pair of kickoff returns for touchdowns on Friday night.
The Cougars were aware heading into the game that they were heavily favored, which caused the coaching staff to be cautious prior to the game. Williams implored his troops to just "do your jobs and forget who we are playing," and Amado cautioned that the team could not afford a letdown.
"Last week when we played Shea, it was David and Goliath, and we were David and nearly pulled it out," said Williams. "This week, we don't want to be Goliath."
He didn't have to worry. After Ingram's opening play dash to the house, PCD received the kickoff, made one first down on a running play, and then the North Providence defense stiffened. PCD attempted a long field goal, but it was blocked and North Providence took over on its own 40.
After a pair of David Santanelli runs netted a first down, Ingram carried for 15 yards, and then took another handoff, broke to the left side of the field and raced to the end zone for his second score in four minutes of play. Sebastian Dziadkiewicz booted the point after, and it was 15-0.
On the first play from scrimmage following the ensuing kickoff, PCD fumbled with Kyle Rodriguez pouncing on the loose ball and the North Providence offense went back to work. Josh Breggia ripped off a nine-yard gain, Brown ran for a first down, and then Breggia, on his second attempt, ran over a defender and into the end zone for his first high school touchdown.
"I tried to put a move on the kid the first time and he got me, so this time, I just lowered my shoulder and went through him," Breggia said. "My first touchdown. It felt great."
The senior, who had problems early on in his career, has emerged as a team leader, playing linebacker on defense and running back on offense.
"I made some dumb mistakes when I was younger, but I'm a leader now," he said.
Coach Amato agreed.
"He worked hard and came back to us and he's really a great story and a great kid," said Amato.
Dziedkiewicz booted the PAT after the Breggia score and it was 22-0.
PCD again was unable to move the ball after taking the kickoff and had to punt, and after Brandon Nunez ran for a long gain, Brown hit Dylan Tirocchi on a slant pattern that Tirocchi took in stride and took it all the way. Dziadkiewicz's kick was true, and it was 29-0.
After PCD took the kickoff, it tried a long pass down field. The PCD receiver shoved Nunez, who had him covered, to the ground just as the ball arrived, but nothing was called and the play ended up being a touchdown for PCD's only score.
Ingram got the score back on the next play when once again he took the kickoff and zig-zagged his way through defenders until he found a seam, and then used his speed to go all the way, this time for 83 yards and another touchdown. The PAT kick made it 35-6 at the end of the first quarter.
Williams began sprinkling reserves at that point, and aided by a pair of unsportsmanlike conduct penalties against the Cougars, the Providence school put together its best drive of the day, but could not score.
They got to the two-yard line when the Cougar defense put together a pair of sacks, and a bad snap foiled a field goal attempt as the Cougars took possession.
The march began immediately with Brown racing for 15 yards, and then Nunez went off tackle, broke down the sideline and scored on a long 65-yard jaunt.
The half ended at 41-6.
The Cougars added a pair of second-half touchdowns, courtesy of touchdown runs by Rakeem Bontemp and Juan Rios.
"A lot of times, teams play to the level of the competition that they are facing," said Williams. "We didn't do that. We played our game and didn't take anything for granted."
The Cougars take their offensive juggernaut show to Central Falls for a 6 p.m. game Friday at the Higginson Avenue complex.