Blue Devils roll past Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton
DOLGEVILLE – Though it had a new coach, it was business as usual for the Dolgeville football team in its season opener Saturday.
In his first game since taking over for Chris Connolly, Dan Zilkowski began his tenure at the Blue Devils’ helm with a 42-11 win over Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton on Saturday at Bynon Field.
“It’s nice to get the first win,” Zilkowski said. “We played well.”
Zilkowski, who had been a Dolgeville assistant since 2000, took over for Connolly in February. Connolly went 71-19 in 10 years as Dolgeville coach.
The Blue Devils, who have won a record 15 Section III titles, led just 7-3 after the opening quarter, but broke the game open by outscoring the Vipers 28-0 in the second quarter.
Most of the damage was done in the final 4:18 of the half as Dolgeville turned a 14-3 lead into a 35-3 halftime margin.
Devin Coonradt opened the scoring with an 11-yard touchdown run with 7:31 left in the first quarter before Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton got on the board with a 28-yard field goal from Kyle Hagmann.
With the score 7-3 at the end of the first quarter, Dolgeville opened the second quarter with a 10-play, 50-yard scoring drive that ended with a 1-yard run by Jason Nastovski.
After an interception by Alex Johnson, the Blue Devils got the ball back with 5:43 left in the first half.
Three plays later, Dolgeville scored when quarterback Reid Johnson found Johann Doerrer with a 35-yard touchdown pass. Greg Pelan, who was six-for-six on extra-point attempts, connected to make it 21-3 with 4:18 left in the first half.
Things got worse from there for the Vipers as their ensuing possession ended with an 87-yard interception return by Coonradt for a touchdown.
“That was a fantastic runback by Devin Coonradt,” Zilkowski said.
With just 14 seconds left in the half, Morrisville-Eaton fumbled on its next play from scrimmage, giving the Blue Devils the ball at the Vipers’ 29-yard line with 10 seconds remaining.
Dolgeville quickly cashed in when Doerrer hauled in a 29-yard pass from Johnson after it was tipped by a Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton defender in the end zone.
As a result, the Blue Devils took a 35-3 lead into the half.
With the outcome all but decided, each side mustered one second-half touchdown.
Dolgeville scored with 5:27 left in the third quarter on a 43-yard run by Jason Nastovski.
The Vipers closed out the scoring with 2:28 remaining in the fourth quarter when Nick Christman threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Logan Bailey. Bryce Belanger completed the conversion pass to James Williams to make the final score 42-11.
“Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton is a very good, solid team,” Zilkowski said.
E.J. Hackney had 80 yards on 19 carries to lead the Vipers, while Christman had 77 yards on 17 carries. Bailey finished with four catches for 46 yards for Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton.
Belanger was 4-for-9 for 42 yards and two interceptions for the Vipers.
Nastovski led Dolgeville with 142 yards and two touchdowns on nine carries, while Coonradt had 80 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries.
Doerrer had two catches for 65 yards and two touchdowns for the Blue Devils, while Johnson was 2-for-5 for 65 yards and two touchdowns.
Carson Dobson had an interception for the Blue Devils, while Austin Kollbeck added a fumble recovery.
“I’m very happy with the way we played today,” Zilkowski said. “We played hard and we limited our penalties and turnovers. We’ve got some things to work on, but this was a great start to the season.”
Dolgeville (1-0 overall) will travel to Herkimer on Friday for a 7 p.m. game.
Dolgeville 42, Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton 11
Morrisville-Eaton/Hamilton3 0 0 8 – 11
Dolgeville7 28 7 0 – 42
D – Coonradt 11 run (Pelan (kick)
M-E/H – Hagmann 28 field goal
D – Nastovski 1 run (Pelan kick)
D – Doerrer 35 pass from Johnson (Pelan kick)
D – Coonradt 85 interception return (Pelan kick)
D – Doerrer 30 pass from Johnson (Pelan kick)
D – Nastovski 43 run (Pelan kick)
M-E/H – Bailey 11 pass from Christman (Wilcox pass from Belanger)