Wednesday, June 27, 2007


First win narrowly eludes Marauders
Jun 26, 2007
It counts as a loss in the standings, but for the Mara ders it was a win of sorts, despite coming out on the short end o a 15-13 decision Saturday against the visiting N
Football is a game of inches, but it was just one inch that kept Milton from tying the score with just over a minute remaining.

After blocking a North Bay punt, the Marauders took over on their own 52-yard line. A pass interference call gave them a first down and then Stuart Schiassi connected with a 43-yard throw and run to George Baiden. With calf muscles cramped up while breaking into the clear, he had to stumble the last 10 yards painfully before collapsing in the end zone.

Trailing 15-13, Milton needed the two-point conversion to even things up. All-pro linebacker Wayne McGillvary, who also took his turns at fullback, muscled the ball down to the goal line. He claims he made it into the end zone, but the referee said otherwise.

The Bulldogs were up the two points by accident in the first place. On their first touchdown, they tried for the extra point, but a bad snap created a scrambling situation. One of their players picked up the ball and ran with it, and got the two points.

This was the first game that the Marauders have been able to move the ball, thanks largely to Baiden, who totaled 127 yards on 21 carries and scored both touchdowns. The first came in the second quarter after the Marauders had fallen behind 15-0.

They started a drive from their own 32-yard-line. Baiden picked up big yardage several times, sandwiched around a Jamie Radway first down catch, finally taking it in the final 12 yards for the major.

Baiden did everything except mind the barbecue at the concession stand. He returned a punt for a touchdown that was called back on a penalty, returned kick-offs, played defense, and even recovered an on-side kick in the last minute, that too called back by a penalty.

Baiden's explanation for the team's offensive turnaround was as simple as getting more practice time together. "We had more reps as a unit. And the O-Line came with their A-game."

Defensively, the Marauders made several big plays, despite missing much of their secondary. The biggest came in the third quarter after a bad punt gave North Bay position on Milton's eight-yard line.

The Bulldogs decided to go for it on fourth and goal from about the three and Craig Davoren crashed through the line and brought down the running back before he could even think of going anywhere.

"It's still a loss," said coach Ken Lashley. "This is a game we should have won."

The team was missing seven regulars for various reasons, including eligibility, and with them in the lineup Lashley says, "We win this game hands down...and we still could have won."

Next week's game is the big one, at Oakville's Bronte Field Saturday at 7 p.m.

As if these teams didn't have a big enough rivalry already, the Marauders, now 0-3, are facing former coach Barry Emo and the 2-2 Longhorns, who have a couple dozen players who were with Milton last season.

"A lot of people are calling it a grudge match," said Lashley. "It's a game. We need a victory and they need a victory."

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