High School Football:
Saturday, October 16, 1999
By Art Redd
It was homecoming weekend for the Gloucester Catholic Rams and Gloucester City Lions. This cross-town rivalry has been a special occasion in Gloucester City for many years. Each year, fans, players, students and alumni can remember something special from each game played. This year, the game was dedicated to Mark DiDio, who passed away last year. Gloucester Catholic was able to win this game in his honor with a 14-7 victory.
Mark DiDio was killed in a car accident right after last year's homecoming game between these same two teams. The Rams have been wearing a number 3 patch on their uniforms in remembrance of the fallen player. This game saw both teams struggle in the red zone, but it was Gloucester Catholic's will to win it for DiDio that took them over the top.
On their first possession the Lions were moving the ball well until an interception by the Rams' defense dashed their hopes of scoring on the opening series. The Rams were able to capitalize on their first series when a fumble recovery after a punt put them deep in Gloucester territory. But the defensive battle continued and both teams were unable to put any points on the board in the first quarter.
After the Lions were forced to punt the ball, Gloucester Catholic was able to put together an 80-yard drive to score the first touchdown of the game. After several plays, a first down run by #4 to the 35-yard line set up the scoring play. Jasmison Cloud completed a short pass to Brian Dougherty who ran down the sideline and drove right at the goal line pylon. His effort gave the Rams a 7-0 lead after the extra point with 2:37 remaining in the half. Gloucester did move the ball into Rams' territory with the clock ticking away. A key defensive play by Rams' #75 deflected a third and ten pass attempt by Harry Thomas ended the scoring threat.
As the second half started, the Lions found themselves down and were looking for ways to get some points on the scoreboard. Thomas was able to move the ball on rollouts, but the Rams adjusted their defense around him. It wasn't until late in the forth quarter that Gloucester Catholic extended their lead. Cloud and runningback Bill Boyer were able to move the ball inside the twenty-yard line. Boyer's running set up the chance for the Rams to score. The Lions were able to stop their opponents on the first three plays, but the forth down keeper by Cloud put the Rams up 14-0 with 3:32 remaining in the game. Now with a sense of urgency, Thomas finally got the Lions on the board when he scrambled for a touchdown. With little time remaining on the clock, Gloucester Catholic (3-2) was able to defeat Gloucester (3-2) to come away with the homecoming victory.
Photos by Art Redd
©1999 South Jersey Sports Online
A Product of WOW Internet Solutions