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Linganore too tough for Middletown, 42-0

Linganore 42, Middletown 0

It’s a cool, clear Friday night, and as the scoreboard brightens the cloudless evening, Linganore and Middletown warm up in front of a charged Knights crowd.

The CN8 TV crews are out in full force with the press box full to the brim. This is CN8’s “Game of the Week.” The crowd is buzzing, watching the decidedly larger Linganore Lancers run through drills opposite the Knights on the new Knights Field.

For the first time this year, both the scoreboard and video board are working flawlessly. A montage was played, with video clips of the Knights to “Back in Black” by AC/DC.

Middletown won the toss, and chose to defer to the second half.
Running multiple offensive sets, Linganore chose running plays most of the time. Pat Balderson was the primary runner. Balderson, the county sprint champion, gained multiple yards before Kevin Meyers fumbled in Middletown territory, turning it over.

Gaining only two yards on the stout Lancer defense, Middletown was forced into a three – and – out.

Two plays into their next series, Nick Marth threw a 75 yard touchdown pass to Ryan Dixon. After the extra point by Kenneth Eckard, the score was brought to 7 – 0.

On the second play of the ensuing drive, Tony Boyer mishandled a toss, and fumbled it away to Linganore.

Three plays into the drive, Balderson scored on a five yard touchdown run. Eckard’s extra point brought the score to 14 – 0 Linganore.

After two first downs, Linganore’s defense forced a punt.

As the first quarter came to a close, Linganore led Middletown 14 – 0.

On the first play of the second quarter, Zach Zwinak ran 12 yard up the middle for a first down. Alternating runs between Zwinak, Rick Conner, Balderson, and Meyers, Linganore marched down the field before a third down and 10 pass to Ryan Dixon to pick up a first down. Dixon was hit the next play for a 34 yard TD pass (he was double covered) as Conner was drilled by the Knights D. Eckard’s kick brought the score to 21 – 0 Linganore.

Jaraad Yates took the ensuing kickoff 37 yards to midfield. On the second play, Michels fumbled the snap, but fell on it to keep possession. His next throw was intercepted by Cory Bishop, who returned the INT into Middletown territory. Michels was also hurt on the play.

Middletown’s defense held, and forced a Linganore punt after three plays.

With Michels on the sideline, Middletown’s offense went nowhere, and was forced to punt.

Balderson ran multiple times on Linganore’s next set, and finished the drive with a 29 yard TD run. He was stopped short multiple times, yet the Knights D once again could not stop the big play. Eckard’s kick made the score 28 – 0 Lancers.

Sam Glushakow was picked off on the next drive by Sean Sheehy to end the second quarter, with the score at 28 – 0 Linganore.

The Middletown Knights marching band played a great halftime show, getting the crowd going with very well played music and multiple dancers. The Knights won their first competition at Centennial High School last weekend, picking up multiple first place awards.

In a strange turn of events, Linganore somehow received the second half kickoff at their own 37 yard line. On the first play, Balderson ran up the middle for 13 yards. Three plays later, Middletown forced a Lancer punt.

The Knights were given no running room, and Michels picked up a first down through the air with Boyer. Three plays later, Pat Ryan dropped a wide open throw, forcing a Middletown punt.

On Linganore’s next offensive play, Balderson ran 20 yards straight up the middle, barely missing another TD run. Conner then threw to Andrew Anderson for 23 yards down the right side for another first down. Two plays later, Meyers ran off the right side for 31 yards and yet another Linganore TD. Eckard kicked through another extra point to bring the score to 35 – 0 Linganore.

Linganore’s defense held Middletown once more, forcing another punt.

One play later, the third quarter came to an end at 35 – 0 Linganore.

Middletown started the fourth quarter by stopping Zwinak for a very short run. The next play Zwinak gained 13 yards on a run to the right before running out of bounds. One play later, Zwinak gained 10 more yards up the middle. Zwinak was given tons of carries that drive, and was tearing up the Knights interior, finishing off the drive with a five yard touchdown run. Eckard’s kick made it 42 – 0 Lancers.

The Knights were forced into a fourth down conversion try, and threw an incomplete pass to give Linganore the ball on downs.

Linganore ran the ball to run out the clock, to end the game at 42 – 0 Linganore.

The Knights lost to a very good Lancers team, but the story of the night was turnovers for Middletown. Three turnovers turned into points for the Lancers, and they won easily.

Tune in next week as the Knights play at home against North Hagerstown in the Homecoming game. Once again, the final score is Linganore 42, Middletown 0.

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Linganore too tough for Middletown, 42-0