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|Warriors fall in home opener|
St. Frederick was unable to obtain two consecutive Class 3A victories as the Warriors (1-1) fell to Independence (2-0) in their 2009 home opener, 33-7 last Friday night.
The two teams went toe-to-toe in the first half as the Warriors kept things close with a solid defensive effort. Running back Alton Drake opened the scoring with a 33-yard touchdown run that was followed by St. Frederick blocking the extra point and holding Independence to a 6-0 advantage.
Nicholas Leehy answered early on in the second quarter when he capped a great-looking St. Frederick drive with a four-yard touchdown rush. The Warriors took the lead on a Logan Blackford extra-point kick.
Following a punt, the Warriors had a great chance to add to their lead but a field goal was soon blocked by Independence and returned 82-yards for a touchdown by Desmond Copeland. The St. Frederick defense was able to stand tall on the next play as the Independence offense attempted to score a two-point conversion on a rush by Drake that the St. Frederick defense quickly turned away.
The Independence defense made the correct adjustments and tightened down in the second half to make things even tougher on the St. Frederick squad after a tight 12-7 halftime deficit got worse for the Warriors.
Marshall Bellazen got loose for two rushing touchdowns in the second half to put the game away.
Bellazen scored on runs of 19 yards and three yards. Drake added his second rushing touchdown in the fourth quarter for Independence.
Bellazen rushed for 93 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries. Drake finished with 71 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries for the Tigers. Leehy finished the game with 25-yards and one touchdown as well as completing 7-of-15 pass attempts to 92 yards and two interceptions.
This week, the Cathedral High School Green Wave (0-2) of Natchez, Miss. visits St. Frederick in a match-up that on paper favors the Warriors. Cathedral has let two straight games slip away in the second half. Cathedral is coming off a 13-6 loss to Enterprise High School where they outplayed their opponent in the first half only to see a lead slip away.
Three turnovers also contributed to the Warriors problems in the second half of the game last Friday evening. Kickoff at Warrior Stadium is set for 7 p.m.
We have to be sharper on offense," St. Frederick head coach Paul Guerriero said. "We are still putting the football on the ground too much. We have to keep our defense off the field and score when we have the chance."