Andre Gordon leaves game before end of first quarter, but Sidney still rolls over Carroll.
By Bryant Billing
SIDNEY — Sidney starting quarterback Andre Gordon didn’t play longer than the first quarter, but the offense’s performance in that time was enough to put Carroll away.
Gordon scored a 94-yard touchdown run to get the Yellow Jackets started in a 35-7 win over the Patriots on Friday at Sidney Memorial Stadium. The win improves Sidney to 3-0 for the first time since 1996.
Gordon was removed from the game late in the first quarter due to an injury to his left shoulder and watched the rest of the game from the sidelines, but the damage was already done. He scored the game’s first touchdown by weaving through the line and outracing Carroll’s secondary with 7:53 left in the first quarter. Isaiah Bowser then added a 45-yard touchdown run 90 seconds later to boost Sidney’s lead to 14-0.
Later in the quarter, Gordon couldn’t come up with a snap on a third down, and Carroll recovered the ball. He was removed from the game and examined by the school’s training staff on the bench. He went to the locker room and later rejoined the team on the sidelines in the second quarter.
Sidney coach Adam Doenges said Gordon will be examined further over the weekend. A timetable for his return will be established next week.
“It’s just a little bit of a shoulder injury,” Doenges said. “It’s too early to know if he’ll be back for (next week’s game) or not.”
Though Sidney’s offense struggled on the first few drives after his departure, backup quarterback Ryan Dunham and Bowser got into a groove late in the second quarter. After Carroll’s Fredrick Butts scored a 15-yard touchdown run with about three minutes left, Bowser quickly responded with a 74-yard touchdown run with 2:35 left.
Caleb Harris and Josiah Hudgins each grabbed an interception in the third quarter, and Sidney scored on each resulting drive. Dunham threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to Ratez Roberts with 4:04 left in the third, and Bowser scored on a three-yard touchdown run with 23 seconds left to boost the lead to 35-7.
Dunham, a sophomore, completed two passes for 29 yards. It was the first time he had played a varsity game.
“After the first few drives, the nerves went away,” Dunham said. “The team was keeping my head up.”
Bowser finished with 304 rushing yards on 26 carries. The Yellow Jackets had 475 yards of offense.
“I thought (Carroll) gave us a little different looks that maybe we weren’t quite prepared for, but the offensive staff did a nice job of adjusting,” Doenges said. “We moved the ball not as consistently as we were hoping, but in the end we’re happy with 35 points.”
Carroll finished with 219 yards of offense, which is the lowest amount Sidney’s defense has allowed this season. Doenges said he was happy with the unit’s performance, especially the two third-quarter interceptions.
“We wanted to be aggressive, and the kids did a nice job with some of those balls in the air to go up and get them,” Doenges said. “We bend a little bit, but in the end it’s only seven points on the board, and that’s better than the last two weeks.”
Sidney travels to Xenia next Friday for a GWOC crossover game. The Buccaneers (0-3) lost 42-19 to Alter on Friday.
“We’ve been staying focused in practice,” Dunham said. “That’s what we’ve got to do so we keep getting better every week.”
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