Chargers strike early and often in win over Vikings

Published 11:47 am Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Isle of Wight needed only 12 minutes to dispatch Brunswick Academy on Friday night, 46-8. Led by senior quarterback Bryce Casey, the Chargers raced out to a 40-0 first quarter advantage in only 11 plays.

“We just came out hot,” said Isle of Wight Academy head coach Dale Chapman. “When you just come into game clicking like that, it’s just very disheartening to the other team.”

Fans were still finding their seats when Casey found receiver Chad McCann running a slant across the middle of the field for a 65-yard touchdown pass on the game’s first play from scrimmage. After a quick four-and-out by the Vikings’ offense, the Chargers drove 57 yards down the field in four plays to go up 14-0. Senior running back Alec Edwards capped off the drive from four yards out as he bulldozed his way into the end zone.

“I’m really proud of how they played. They were real aggressive,” Chapman said. “We just put all three phases of the game together.”

Another stout effort by the Chargers’ defense gave the offense the ball back in Brunswick territory, and Casey took advantage. The signal caller hit a streaking Curtis Waters for a 35-yard touchdown.

When the ensuing Brunswick drive came to a halt, Isle of Wight’s Alex Stidham fielded the punt return and nearly broke for the score before he was pushed out near the red zone. On the drive’s penultimate play, Casey hit Edwards for a 28-yard screen pass to set up a Donald King 5-yard touchdown scamper.

“It’s exciting to have the weapons that we do on offense,” Chapman said.

Another abbreviated Brunswick drive ended in a blocked punt, setting Isle of Wight up with 1st-and-goal from the 1-yard-line. Casey found receiver Matt Byrd alone in the back of the end zone to give the Chargers a 40-0 lead. He finished a perfect 6-for-6 for 165 yards and three touchdowns in the first quarter, his only action of the contest.

“He’s doing really well for us,” Chapman said of Casey. “He’s one of the smartest quarterbacks I’ve ever had. He picked up the offense real quickly and he reads the defenses real well and audibles when he has to. I haven’t typically had quarterbacks do the things he does for us.”

Brunswick’s only score of the evening came on a 56-yard run by senior Jackson Combs. It was the only Vikings drive that reached plus territory, as the Isle of Wight defense held their opponent to 98 yards of total offense. Linebacker Zack Hinson led the inspired group with 10 tackles.

“We’re flying to the football,” Chapman said. “Everyone’s doing a good job at understanding down and distance, and we’ve made some big plays in the last few games.”

The win marks Isle of Wight’s third-consecutive victory after its season-opening defeat to Atlantic Shores Christian (Virginia Beach). The Chargers host Richmond Christian this Friday night at Hooper Field. The contest against the Warriors, 3-0, was originally scheduled for Oct. 9.

“I’ve watch a little bit of their highlights,” Chapman said. “They’re a first-year program coming off of an undefeated junior varsity season last year, and they’re undefeated so far this year. They have some really good skills guys with speed that we haven’t seen since the first game of the year.”