George Mason High School’s football team continues its second half slide, falling to local Class 6 Marshall High School, 47-6, on Oct. 12.
The loss to Marshall marks four straight for the Mustangs (2-4) following a rousing start to season that featured back-to-back shutouts where Mason scored a combined 86 points in both games. It should be noted that, outside of a 35-7 loss to Bull Run District rival Strasburg High School, the Mustangs played against higher classified opponents. Though Mason head coach Adam Amerine hasn’t allowed playing schools with a larger talent pool to be an excuse for in-game results, and he held a positive outlook from last Friday’s final score despite the Mustangs troubles in slowing the Statesmen.
“It was a matter of being out sized,” Amerine said. “We actually forced their offense to change [quarterbacks] in the second quarter and forced them to go to a different offensive look [but] when you face the option, if one player makes a mistake it results in big plays and with young kids on defense they got caught wrong footed a few times.”
Mason’s defense held strong throughout the first quarter while the offense looked to get on track itself. Both teams traded three-and-outs before Marshall put together a short drive that ended with a 47-yard field goal. Another Mustang drive ended in a punt with the Statesmen tacking on a 45-yard field goal in response before the quarter ended.
Just as Amerine noted, the tide began to turn in the second 12-minute frame. Starting at midfield, a quarterback keeper to the left for 13 yards, then another to the right for 22 yards had Marshall knocking on the door. A short 11-yard run converted the Statesmen’s trip to the redzone and put them up 13-0.
The Mustangs’ three-and-out on the ensuing drive and a short punt that started Marshall’s drive at Mason’s 31-yard line put the home team in a tight spot. In three plays, the Statesmen found the endzone again on a 15-yard sweep right to go up 20-0. On Marshall’s next drive, this time starting at the Mason 17-yard line, an option run to the left saw the quarterback pitch to an open runner who skirted across the goal line to lengthen the Statesmen’s advantage to 27-0 before adding another field goal leading into halftime.
Following the intermission, the Mustangs looked inspired. They forced a punt on Marshall’s opening drive and freshman quarterback Evans Rice found junior wingback Michael Turner for a 45-yard pass to notch their first points of the night. But the glow was short-lived as the Statesmen strung together a 56-yard drive for another touchdown and to earn a 37-6 lead.
The Mustangs’ longest drive of the game came after with Rice airing out. However, an interception cut the march short and Marshall tacked on a touchdown and field goal soon after.
Mason will look to end their losing streak with a home game against Central High School tomorrow.