November 5th, 2016

St. Patrick's dominates 6-A Toy Bowl title game

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Paul Najjar

Senior Writer

St. Patrick's dominates 6-A Toy Bowl title game
St. Patrick RB Zach Marks (getting tackled in blue shirt) rushed for two touchdowns and kicked a 28-yard FG in the Celtics' 23-6 Toy Bowl win / cover: St. Patrick players hoist the Toy Bowl Trophy

The St. Patrick Celtics defeated the St. Albert the Great Vikings 23-6 in the 6-A Toy Bowl championship game at St. Xavier’s Brother Thomas More Stadium Saturday morning. It was the 51st championship for Sixth Grade football in the Catholic School Athletic Association.

With the victory, the Celtics avenged last year’s 8-0 loss to the Vikings when St. Patrick’s allowed a touchdown with just over a minute to play and couldn’t come back.

The Celtics rode the legs and arm of quarterback/placekicker Zach Marks for the win. Marks booted a 28-yard field goal at the end of St. Patrick’s first drive to give the Celts a 3-0 lead. Its ball-control offense and a stout defense did the rest of the work.

“Our team has been built to run the football and dominate the clock,” St. Patrick head coach Tim Campisano said. “We’ve got a lot of good linemen and a couple of really good running backs like Zach Marks. The quarterback plays under control. Our goal is to run the ball and run it hard.”

St. Patrick’s possessed the ball for nearly 22 of the game’s 32 minutes. In the first half, the Celtics held the ball for 13 minutes to St. Albert’s three. The Vikings ran just five offensive plays in the opening half. 

Facing a fourth-and-goal from the St. Albert seven yard line with less than 12 seconds left in the first half, Campisano called timeout to discuss the play he wanted his Celtics to run.

“Zach is a real good kicker and he has done it all year when we’ve needed him to do that,” Campisano said. “But we decided right before halftime that we wanted to put more points on the board and that’s why we went for it.”

It was a pass play perfectly executed by quarterback Michael Long who fired it over the middle to a waiting Nolan Wolford in the end zone for the score.

“We called a slant route to our backup wide receiver, my son Jackson, and they (St. Albert) walked their safety over there because we have run that a lot this year,” Campisano said. “We told our quarterback (Long) to look at their safety and so we had a backup plan. We had a wide open receiver in the middle of the field and the quarterback read it perfectly.”

The Long-to-Wolford strike gave the Celtics a 9-0 against the stingy Vikings defense. But, the way the St. Patrick offense was controlling the clock that might as well have been a 20-point lead.

A Marks touchdown run extended the lead to 15-0 before an 18 yard touchdown run by the Vikings’ do-it-all running back Austin Uhrhan closed the lead to 15-6.

Another Marks touchdown run and his two-point kick set the final score at 23-6. St. Patrick’s out-gained St. Albert 144 yards to 73 yards. Long connected on two of his four pass attempts for 16 yards and the 7-yard score to Wolford.

“This year has been awesome,” Marks said. “The practices are really fun and we just worked hard for the win.” 


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