No game article from the Elmira paper, they used
parts of the Press
article. After the stats section below, there's a little
Forks/EFA tidbit from the Press' Tuesday Weekend Review.
Forks off to solid start, shuts out Elmira FA
Offense, defense click in opener
BY KEVIN STEVENS
Press & Sun-Bulletin
CHENANGO FORKS --
Oh, about that football squad from Chenango Forks, presumably
destined for a drop back to the pack following a marvelous
two-season stretch ...
The Blue Devils made a
statement Saturday afternoon, taking apart Elmira Free Academy
for an eyebrow-raising 19-0 season-opening victory.
Junior quarterback Tim Batty
delivered two touchdown passes to classmate Zach Vredenburgh and
added a spectacular 58-yard scoring run, and the Devils' defense
limited a much larger EFA bunch to five first downs.
All told, it was just about all
Forks could hope for as it opened defense of its Section 4 Class
"No one gave us any
respect, we like that," Vredenburgh said. "We're
underrated and we'll just show people what we can do."
Too, Elmira Free Academy was
clearly not the equal of its 2002 squad, which captured Section
4's Class A title. EFA's Blue Devils repeatedly cost themselves
with nickel-and-dime penalties, and appeared to lose the stamina
battle on a warm, sunny afternoon.
Nonetheless, Forks coach Kelsey
Green said, "That was a nice win. We'll take it."
And make it back-to-back
successes against EFA, Saturday's to go with a 20-0 season
opener on the road last September.
The tone was established on
EFA's opening possession. The guests were whistled once for
holding and another time for delay of game in a drive that began
at their 32-yard line and ended with a punt from their 34.
Forks' initial score was set up
when Steve Samson recovered a fumble to put his squad in
possession at EFA's 42.
The first of three
Batty-to-Vredenburgh connections was an 11-yarder to EFA's
30-yard line. Four plays later, on third-and-8 from the 15,
Batty passed to Vredenburgh in the end zone and Vredenburgh
reached up over defender Andy Zick to put his team's first
points of the season on the board in the final minute of the
The play of the game came with
a bit over seven minutes remaining in the first half, and was
evidence of just why Batty figures among the most valuable
players in all of the conference.
On first-and-10 from Forks' 42
following EFA's third punt, Batty started with the football
toward the home sideline, only to make an exquisite cut back
against the flow of defensive traffic to clear sailing down the
far side of the field and across the goal line.
Had Batty's name not already
been highlighted on the scouting reports of upcoming Forks
opponents, it assuredly will be after that piece of running.
"We'd been running it up
the middle," Batty said, alluding to nine carries by
fullback Joe Babcock to that juncture. "They bit on the
fullback, I just cut back and no one really saw me."
Babcock, in addition to his 83
tough rushing yards on 18 carries, was linebacker and leader of
a defense that saw to it EFA would snap the ball no more than
four times in Forks territory.
"Joey played a lot of
linebacker last year and possibly could have played more, but
there were two seniors ahead of him," Green said. "Joe
knows its his turn and he made a nice start (Saturday). And he
ran hard with the football."
The final touchdown was scored
with two minutes to play in the first half, again a
Batty-to-Vredenburgh collaboration and again over the head of
defender Zick. In fact, the 21-yard scoring play made it three
complete passes -- for an aggregate 54 yards -- in a four-play,
"We used the same play. I
ran down the field and Tim threw a couple nice passes, right to
me," Vredenburgh said of the two TD plays.