Saturday, September 25, 2004
By Vincent Lewis
The South Jersey area is well aware of how good it feels that our Philadelphia Eagles have gotten off to a very good start by winning their first 2 games of the season. The team has built a winning atmosphere that surrounds them and provides an attitude that this team knows now how to play together. In a similar situation, the Eagles from Paul VI and Bishop Eustace find themselves in a position to prove who the better undefeated team is after both find themselves ahead of the pack after two weeks. A victory by either team keeps them on top of their division. A late touchdown by Paul VI made this game interesting, but it was Brandon Canter’s 30-yard field that proved to be the difference in the Crusaders 10-7 victory at home.
When the high school football season began this year, there were teams looking to either build on the success they had accomplished from last year or just looking for a fresh start. For Paul VI, they were clearly looking to forget the past and begin a new future for their football program. After losing all of their games last year and the season before that, you can’t help but be excited for the Eagles as they had won their first 2 games on this year’s schedule.
Paul VI began the game with their opening possession and was able to move the ball with the offensive line providing lanes for Terrence Riley to run and Michael D’Angelo to pass through. That drive would stall forcing the Eagles to punt the ball to the Crusaders. With the help of a key fourth and two offsides penalty, Bishop Eustace took advantage for their offense’s first time on the field by scoring on Chris Baldwin’s 3 yard touchdown run at the end of the first quarter. That 7-0 lead held up until the break at halftime.
As well as Paul VI was able to move the football at times, it would be the defense that highlighted this game as the Crusaders found out how tough the Eagles were playing. Neither team was able to put points on the scoreboard until the fourth quarter. Taking advantage of Canter place kicking abilities, his field goal gave Eustace a 10-0 lead but with plenty of time for Paul VI to work with. Capitalizing on their good field position, the Eagles would score on a reception by Bobby Harper who was able to go up high for the 31 yard touchdown. There was still over four minutes remaining in this game, but the Crusaders defense would be able to preserve the win for their third straight victory.