September 29, 2010 —
By Bill Mullaly
The Hudson Tigers, behind the four-touchdown performance of all-state caliber halfback Drew Milligan, took apart the Vikings of Dundee on Friday night over in Monroe County. Hudson won the LCAA contest 37-14 to move to 3-0 in league play and 5-0 overall for the season. Hudson has now won 19 straight regular season games dating back to the fifth game of the 2008 season. “This was a big win against a solid team in Dundee,” said Tiger head coach Chris Luma, who is 13 of 14 in his career against the Vikings. “We were worried about a letdown after two big wins the past two weeks but our boys did a nice job. Our defense came up big early and then our offense adjusted and got things going. We had a good power game on offense but we also mixed in a couple of passes real nice. It was a real good win for us.”
The Tigers were hugely aided by the play of senior tailback Milligan who ran for 224 yards on just 22 carries for an average of over 10 yards per pop. “Drew had a great game and we needed it,” said Luma. The Tigers were also helped by a two-quarterback tandem that will be giving opposing coaches fits as they try to game plan for who the Tigers might use under center. Five-game starter Jimmy Williams played his usual steady game and then back-up Sandor Heistan came in to do his part in giving the Tigers two quality signalcallers. “I got two good efforts from both of my quarterbacks and they both played well,” Luma said. “Also, our defense did a real good job against a very dangerous quarterback that Dundee had.”
Game Scoring Summary
Hudson got in a hole early after a botched punt attempt and Dundee took over at the Tiger 29-yard line. After one first down they faced a third and one at the Hudson eight-yard line. Dundee lost a yard and then on fourth and two the Tigers stopped the Vikings just short of the first down. Hudson then used a 15-yard pass to tight end Matthew Smith to get the ball out to the 25-yard line. However, a loss of nine yards put the ball at Hudson’s own 16-yard line. Enter Milligan to give the Tigers fans the highlight they drove all the way over there for. He went right on a counter play and cut up-field and off he went 84 yards to paydirt. With 2:02 left in the first stanza the Tigers now led 6-0. Williams hit Smith for two points for the 8-0 lead. The scoring drive covered 93 yards in just four plays.
Then when the Tigers got the ball back they used a cleverly designed screen pass to Milligan from Heistan. The play covered 37 yards and a key was the huge block thrown by tight end Ricky Beach to spring Milligan loose and that opening was all he needed. Then the Tigers used a Milligan halfback pass back to a wide-open Heistan for the successful two-point play. Up 16-0 with 9:30 to halftime the Tigers were now in control. This second scoring drive lasted eight plays over 65 yards.
In the middle of the second period the Tigers and Milligan struck again. The speedy left halfback went in from nine yards out and when the point-after-touchdown run failed it was Hudson up 22-0 the same number Milligan wears. The third scoring drive covered 80 yards in only five plays at the 6:11 mark before halftime. Dundee was not going to be shutout as they used a long scoring drive of 76 yards on seven plays including a nice screen pass of their own. They scored on a crossing pattern from 12 yards out with 4:06 until intermission and the PAT made it 22-7.
Hudson never rests on offense and back to work they went scoring once more before halftime to take away any momentum the Vikings might have gotten by their late score. A drive that encompassed 65 yards and using eight plays ended with Milligan. He went in from 14 yards out with just 31 seconds to halftime. He then kicked the extra point to make it 29-7 at halftime. He had accounted in some part in 27 of the team’s 29 points to that junction of the game.
The Tigers didn’t score in the third quarter but the Vikings did using another scoring pass to close the deficit somewhat. A 26-yard touchdown pass with 5:51 left in period three made it 29-14 as the PAT was good again for Dundee.
The Tiger offense put together a clinching drive to seal the win that started late in period three and ended early in period four. Playing Hudson style football the Tigers embarked on an impressive 13-play, 60-yard drive that ended with Heistan scoring. The senior quarterback ran it in on a left end keeper from six yards out with 10:54 to go in the game. Heistan then hit Smith with a two-point pass and the scoring was over at 37-14.
The statistical review
Hudson ran the ball 59 times for 340 yards for nearly six yards per carry. Dundee toted the pigskin 22 times for 49 yards against a tough crew of Tigers simply known as Denny’s D. Dundee’s quarterback threw it 34 times and hit 17 for 211 yards. Dundee totaled 260 and Hudson 72 through the air plus 340 rushing for 412. Milligan had his 224 yards, while Camden McCaskey had 75 yards on 15 tries and Grant Benschoter was hit hard often in the middle of the pile for 28 yards on 11 carries. Dimitri Nealy ran it five times for 18 yards. Passing wise the Tigers were led by Williams hitting three of four for 32 yards and Heistan hit one of two for 37 yards and the touchdown. Hudson, with Milligan’s throw, was five of seven overall for 72 yards.
Smith led with three catches for 32 yards, while Milligan had one grab for 37 and Heistan one catch for three yards. Both teams punted the ball three times, while Hudson barely won the first down battle 13-12 and the visitors were hit with 66 lost yards on eight penalties. Dundee was flagged six times for 36 yards.
On defense the Tigers were led by nose tackle Meiko McDaniel with nine stops as he plugged the middle. Smith had eight stops, as did Benschoter. Beach had seven tackles, while Burke Hart, Alex Leathers and McCaskey all had six tackles. Lucas Sparapani, Devan Marry and Nathaniel Osborne all had five stops. Hart had two sacks, while Beach and McDaniel shared a sack. Hart also had a pass deflection. Osborne had the lone turnover of the game when he fell on a Dundee fumble.
Erie is next
Hudson heads back over to Monroe County to take on a winless Eagle team. This one should be a business-as-usual game for the Tigers who are banged up and need a bit of a breather. There are no guarantees however, and the Eagles will bring it against Hudson you can bet on that. The only two things for sure about this game are the Tigers will blank the Eagles on the scoreboard and the Erie Mason athletic department will not allow Tiger fans on their all-purpose track after we stomped them. Hudson fans will be denied entrance to the playing field and will have to wait behind the stands to congratulate their victorious Tigers.
Prediction: Hudson 49, Erie Mason 0.