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Somers shuts down Saunders 37- 0

Posted Saturday, June 04, 2005 by Tony DeMatteo
Somers defeats Saunders 37-0
(Original publication: September 19, 2004)

SOMERS ? It's a principle every coach believes in, yet one easily ignored by his players: practice better to play better.

Simple, right? Not really. But mention practice to a Somers player and they'll be quick to say why it's so critical to success.

They make football sound so simple.

"Our practices are really mental," said junior Jimmy Adamo. "When you pay attention you can use whatever you learn there in the games."

Well, apparently Adamo and his defensive teammates are listening. They now have allowed only one touchdown in 11 quarters after completing a 37-0 shutout of Saunders last night.

The defense sacked Blue Devils quarterback Mike Vataj six times and intercepted him twice. They allowed only four Saunders first downs all game.

Defensive ends Dan Agostino and Sean Kammerer got in the backfield at will. They each had a sack, as did four other Tuskers.

"We knew they threw half the time," Somers coach Tony DeMatteo said. "I was impressed with the way (Vataj) threw on film and I knew we needed to get to the quarterback."

Establishing a steady pass rush was one of DeMatteo's main points this week. Agostino, who said his team usually racks up more hurries than sacks, said all he did was listen and execute.

"Coach DeMatteo preaches to us to do everything right," said Agostino, a senior. "If you're prepared you won't fail."

"It's definitely true," said Adamo, a middle linebacker. "Half the time I know what play is coming."

Five players scored touchdowns for the Tuskers (2-1). Nick Gonzalez, a junior running back, opened the scoring on a 65-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. After back-to-back three-and-outs, Somers scored touchdowns on four of its next five possessions, then added a safety late in the game when a punt snap sailed out of the end zone.

In the end, the facts were compelling: the Tuskers never allowed the Blue Devils (0-3) to creep closer than the 35.

Somers has played that type of defense ever since allowing three touchdowns in the first quarter of its season-opener against Fox Lane, a 19-14 loss. The only points the Tuskers have allowed since came on a first-quarter Horace Greeley touchdown last week.

Times aren't as prosperous for Saunders, which played last night with 22 players, six of whom were freshmen. Coach Vito DeBellis said the unsteadiness caused by problems with the Yonkers city school budget have left his team short-handed and inexperienced.

"We just have too many young kids," DeBellis said. "It's kinda tough. We're just going to keep on plugging away."

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