St. Aloysius slays Pisgah, 21-7|[10/13/07]

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 13, 2007

Before Friday night, Justin Hosemann was the fourth back in a four-man rotation. The St. Aloysius junior was barely averaging four yards a carry and had totaled just 223 yards in six games.

With one solid performance, he vaulted to the top of St. Al’s crowded backfield.

Hosemann ran for 133 yards and a touchdown on a season-high 22 carries, leading a St. Al rushing attack that piled up 290 yards and rolled over Pisgah 21-7.

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“I kept my head up, saw the holes and ran as hard as I could,” Hosemann said. “I would’ve been getting my number called a little more if I had been producing, which I wasn’t. I felt like I should’ve had a lot more yards. I feel like I should’ve had a lot more tonight.”

Hosemann’s effort was plenty to beat the Dragons, especially with the help he got from St. Al’s other runners.

Quarterback Chris Lewis gained 61 yards on only eight carries, and receiver Chip Donald had 60 yards and a touchdown on four carries. Brendan Beesley only toted the mail three times, but one went for a game-clinching 2-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter.

The steady running from all of their backs allowed the Flashes to have five drives of seven plays or more and control the clock in the second half. St. Al had the ball for nearly 14 of the last 16 minutes, including a game-ending 12-play drive that ate the last 7 minutes and 50 seconds off the clock.

“The loss to Puckett (last week) wasn’t good, but we played hard,” said St. Al coach Jim Taylor, whose team snapped a two-game losing streak. “We came back this week and played hard-nosed football like we were capable of.”

St. Al started the game with what amounted to a 12-play drive. A fumble near midfield gave Pisgah the ball just five plays into the game, but running back Donatello Luckett fumbled it right back on the next play. St. Al then marched down the field and took a 6-0 lead on Hosemann’s 8-yard touchdown run. The extra point was blocked.

The Flashes extended the lead to 14-0 on Donald’s 27-yard TD run and Lewis’ 2-point conversion scramble with 10:19 to play in the second quarter. Pisgah answered with a 14-play, seven-minute drive that stalled at the St. Al 16-yard line and didn’t net any points.

It was a recurring theme for the Dragons. All of their drives except the early fumble by Luckett lasted at least six plays, but their only score came on Luckett’s 31-yard run on the opening drive of the second half. Luckett finished with 103 yards and the TD on 16 carries, and Pisgah had 189 rushing yards as a team.

Pisgah never punted. Coach Marc Herrington said he was trying to test the mettle of his team, and went for it on fourth down five times — including once from his own 38 and another time on fourth-and-19. It converted two of the fourth down tries, both in the first half.

“I’ve got three seniors, and I wanted to get these young men salty,” Herrington said. “We’ve got a long way to go.”