PLEASANTVILLE-Five players scored for a balanced offense as Cedar Creek High School earned its first varsity football win with a 35-6 victory over Pleasantville in a Cape-Atlantic League game Friday night.
"It's just phenomenal to get the first win off our shoulders," Cedar Creek coach Tim Watson said. "We believe in these guys."
Cedar Creek (1-2) opened last September but played only junior varsity football.
"When such a young group gets a win," Watson added, "then they get some confidence and some swagger."
Pirates junior quarterback Damon Mitchell played with swagger throughout the game, completing 4-of-7 passes for 82 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He also rushed for 122 yards with a touchdown.
"It all started up front," Mitchell said. "Our line held their blocks."
The Pirates caught some luck when they drew a roughing-the-kicker penalty on a punt just four plays into the game. With a new set of downs at midfield, Mitchell ripped a 35 yard run on second-and-7 to bring Cedar Creek to the Pleasantville 15-yard line. Two plays later, junior Jamal Harvey scored the game's first points on a 15-yard run to the left side.
Junior kicker Emily Kruger kicked the extra point - the first of five she made on as many attempts - to give the Pirates a 7-0 lead with eight minutes remaining in the first quarter.
Rain and lightning caused a 40-minute delay with two minutes remaining in the first quarter, with both teams retreating to the locker rooms. Watson said he liked the feeling inside the Pirates' room.
"There was something about our kids (during the break)." Watson said. "It was as loose as they've ever been. Then they came out with it."
The Pirates scored twice in the second quarter to give them a 21-0 halftime lead. Junior Tyshaun Mosley scored on a 30-yard reversal, and Mitchell broke off a 30 yard run with 1:51 to go.
On Cedar Creek's first possession of the second half, Mitchell led a drive with three completions for 56 yards, including a 41-yarder to wide receiver C.J. Sandfort, and a 10-yard touchdown pass to tight end Nolan Seward. Seward finished with three receptions for 41 yards.
On the Greyhounds' ensuing drive, Cedar Creek sophomore Jose Flores recovered a fumble on the Pirates' 6-yard line.
The Pirates put together another long drive, highlighted by 16- and 17-yard runs by junior Ernest Collier and a 29-yard gain by Mitchell. Collier ran in the score from 2 yards out.
Pleasantville (0-3) got its score late in the fourth quarter after junior Hassan Calloway's kickoff return set up a drive starting on the Cedar Creek 45. Calloway capped the seven-play drive with a 3-yard touchdown run.
As freshman running back Isa Willis ran out the clock on the next drive, the Pirates sideline erupted. Players emptied a Gatorade bucket on Watson.
Cedar Creek totaled 326 yards from scrimmage in the game.
"This is what we can do," Watson said. "We want to play Pirates football and these are the things we know we can do. We believe in our skills."
Contact Jeff Sporer:
Cedar Creek 7 14 7 7- 35
Pleasantville 0 0 0 6- 6
CC- Harvey 15 run (Kruger kick)
CC- Mosley 30 run (Kruger kick)
CC- Mitchell 30 run (Kruger kick)
CC- Seward 10 pass from Mitchell (Kruger kick)
CC- Collier 2 run (Kruger kick)
P- Calloway 3 run (conversion failed)
Records-Cedar Creek 1-2; Pleasantville 0-3.