By Alex Moore
George Mason High School’s football team was outmuscled Friday on the road in Berryville, losing 42-7 in a Bull Run District matchup against the formidable Clarke County High School.
The Mustangs’ record fell to 5-4 with the loss (1-4 in the Bull Run Region). The Eagles advanced to 9-1 (3-1 in the Bull Run Region).
At first, this high school game appeared as though it would be a close affair.
Although Clarke County scored 14 points in the first quarter, George Mason’s offense moved the ball well early in the game.
Then the second quarter happened.
Worn down by a physically imposing team in the trenches, the Mustangs appeared to snap, allowing the Eagles to score on four of five offensive plays during a nine-minute stretch of game time that would run through the beginning of the fourth quarter.
Mustangs head coach Adam Amerine credited the back-breaking sequence to Clarke County’s physicality.
“They’re a big, strong football team that traditionally places a ton of emphasis on lifting and being able to outmuscle opponents,” he said. “We were just unable to match their strength up front and lost control with some poor defensive plays.”
From this point on, the Mustangs’ defense would rally, not allowing another point for the rest of the game.
But the offense would never find the spark it needed to mount a comeback.
Senior running back Finn Roou, who leads George Mason in carries for the season, would only muster 66 yards on 27 attempts, and the team wouldn’t score until junior running back West Hagler found the end zone on a two-yard run late in the fourth quarter. Senior kicker Peter Scardino would convert the extra point.
After the game, Amerine’s confidence in his players remained steady, despite the tough loss. “I’m very happy with where we stand,” he admitted when asked how he felt about his team’s season. “I believe we really have gotten better this year with the development and technique of our players, and their effort each week has been outstanding.”
Amerine does have a point. No matter what, the Mustangs will finish the season better than last year, when they started 2-0 but lost their final eight games. They have also impressed when playing in Falls Church, with a 3-1 home record.
Mason will have a chance to end the season with a home win and a positive record against Madison County High School for senior night this Friday.