Unionville rolls over Oxford

EAST MARLBOROUGH >> Unionville’s defense wasted no time getting its offense on the field against Oxford, as junior linebacker Jesse Gill batted down the opening pass by Dan Green. That first drive would end quickly, resulting in a turnover on downs.
Gill, Trevor Gardiner, and the rest of the Indians defense gave Green fits, while Brendan Boyle and Brandon Boon ran over the stadium turf like it was a track meet.
It totaled up to a 24-7 Unionville victory in the Ches-Mont League American Division match up Fridaynight at Unionville High School.
The Indians scored three times in three possessions in the first half. After taking possession on its 47, the Indians (2-0, National, 4-0 overall) motored 50 yards downfield carried by the legs of Boon and Boyle. Facing a 2nd-and-goal, Boon punched in from the three for the game’s first score.
Boyle would tack on some early insurance when he rolled out and found Mark Knightly in the right-hand corner of the end zone to complete the 2-point conversion giving the Indians an 8-0 with three minutes remaining in the first quarter.
Pat Clark’s special teams flexed their muscle on the following drive, when the Hornets were forced  to punt on their own 19-yard line.
The snap to Green sailed over his head. As he tried to recover it, a scramble of Unionville defenders pounced on him and the ball as it reached the end zone. When the dust cleared, Unionville’s Joe Zubillaga came up with the ball for the TD to make the game 15-0 with 2:40 left in the first quarter.
The special teams would force a safety later in the third quarter as Gardiner blocked the attempt that went out of the end zone. The unit accounted for nearly a third of the Indians’ points.
“They (special teams) are a third of the game,” said Clark. “When we don’t play it well we get crushed like we did last week against Downingtown (East). We work on special teams and we look for an advantage there every week. So we find points where you can find them, it doesn’t matter how you score them.”
Boyle responded to another Oxford turnover on downs by unleashing his first pass of the game five minutes into the second quarter. His 60-yard missile connected with wide receiver Tyler Marmo for the final Unionville touchdown of the half to give them a commanding 22-0 with eight minutes remaining in the first half.
Clark gave the recipe to his offense’s success as they reach the second half of the regular season.
“We’ve been historically a run-first team,” said Clark. “And those are two guys that can make big plays for us. Coming down the stretch it’s going to be Boyle, Boon, Marmo, and (Elan) Nash. That’s who we are going to ride these last months.”
Oxford was able to squeak in a score in the first half as Dan Green, muscled his way into the end zone on a QB sneak, following a 75-yard drive that lasted six minutes and 32 seconds.
In the second half, Gardiner showed off his defensive presence by gathering two sacks, making his total 3.5 for the evening. Gardiner was nearly untouched at the line of scrimmage as he took shelter in the Oxford backfield for much of the second half.
“Trevor runs really well and he’s physical,” said Clark. “He got some playing time last year as a sophomore and he’s really bloomed this year. He redirects well and when you do that you’ll put pressure on the quarterback.”
Despite what could have been two crucial turnovers, Clark is able to focus on the positives in the victory.
“We turned the ball over and you obviously can’t do that,” he said. “I thought defensively we were solid and special teams we were effective. We are still working stuff out. We are dealing with four or five kids out of the lineup the last few weeks. We’re getting some kids back. Our timing was a little bit off but we’re still in first place in the league. We bounced back and held them to the seven points. There are a lot of positives tonight. I’m proud of the way this group played.”
Unionville gears up for an American division showdown as they travel to Great Valley next Saturdayafternoon. Oxford is Bishop Shanahan’s first home night opponent on Friday.
Unionville 24, Oxford 7
Oxford 0 7 0 0 — 7
Unionville 15 7 2 0 — 24
First Quarter
Unionville — Boon 3 run (Knightly pass)
Unionville — Zubillaga recovers snap in end zone (Barrett kick)
Second Quarter
Unionville — Marmo 60 pass from Boyle (Barrett kick)
Oxford — Green 1 run (Hammond kick)
Third Quarter
Unionville — Safety, blocked punt out of end zone
team statistics
First downs 9 9
Rushes-yards 38-73 29-135
Passing 12-23-0 3-9-1
Passing yards 77 86
Total yards 150 221
Punts 2-27.0 2-37.0
Fumbles-lost 1-0 2-2
Penalties-yards 5-65 5-30
Individual statistics
Rushing — Oxford: Davis 21-74, Green 12-2 TD, Hilaman 1-(-1), Holz 4-(-2). Unionville: Boon 14-67 TD, Boyle 6-36, Graham 8-21, Nash 1-11.
Passing — Oxford: Green 12-23-0 77 yards. Unionville: Boyle 3-9-1 86 yards TD, Hagan 0-0-0 0 yards.
Receiving — Oxford: Davis 1-32, Williams 5-23, DeShields 1-8, Benke 1-5, Holz 2-6, Hilaman 2-3. Unionville: Marmo 2-78 TD, Knightly 1-8.
Interceptions — Oxford: Benke.
Sacks — Oxford: White. Unionville: Gardiner 3.5, Gill 1.5, Green 1.
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