By Natalie Heavren
In front of a large, boisterous Homecoming crowd, George Mason High School’s football team defeated Sidwell Friends School 35-7 to capture its first home win of the season and improve to a 3-2 record.
“Anytime you win at home is a good feeling. You know, it being Homecoming adds to it. I’m happy for the kids,” said Mason head coach Adam Amerine.
Mason’s first touchdown came in the middle of the first quarter when sophomore running back George Papadopoulos ran it in from the 10-yard line.
Less than 30 seconds into the second quarter junior running back Robert Silva ran it in from seven yards out for another touchdown.
After another three and out from Sidwell Friends gave the ball back to Mason.
On the first play of their ensuing drive sophomore quarterback Evans Rice threw a 46-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Enzo Paradiso to make it 20-0 with 10:12 left in the second quarter.
The Mustangs would score once more before halftime when senior running back Connor Plaks ran it in from four yards out with 40 seconds left in the half. After a successful two-point conversion Mason went into halftime with a 28-0 lead.
Late in the third quarter, Rice threw his second touchdown of the game, this time to sophomore running back Graham Felgar to increase the lead to 35-0.
Sidwell Friends would eventually get on the board with less than five minutes left in the game after quarterback Dallas Lea threw a touchdown pass to wide receiver Chris Ward.
The offense continues to succeed despite an offensive line that is missing three of the five players that started there this season.
The secret to this success is players that are stepping up to play on both sides of the ball.
“We have some new bodies in there [offensive line],” Amerine added. “[Junior tight end Paul] Thompson stepped in and started at tackle tonight and he did a great job. He played two ways and [Senior] Henry Wildman stepped in and played linebacker for [sophomore] Seth [Stillwagoner], he got hurt last week. So we had a couple guys that stepped in and really did a nice job playing both ways.”
One thing that needs to change, however, is the number of penalties.
“We lost our composure. They were pushing us and we just couldn’t control our emotions there at times,” said Amerine
He added, “We told them we’re at the point where if you get a costly penalty, you’re going to come out of the game. We are deep enough this year to where we have backups that can go onto the field. So if you make a mistake and you react poorly, and you just don’t play the type of football that I expect, you’re going to come out of the game. And so hopefully they learned that.”
The Mustangs have a bye next week and will play at Warren County High School on Oct. 11 at 7 p.m.
“We’re going to get healthy. We’re going to get some of those linemen that are injured and a couple of the other guys that got some sore ankles and hips and take it easy next week and keep up our conditioning and hopefully be ready to go in two weeks,” said Amerine.