You can argue that it is Sam Palomaki, Ryan Flaitz and some of their friends who lead the charge when it comes to Victor winning football games, under normal circumstances.
They are two of Victor’s offensive linemen. So when the weather Friday night included wind, it only underlined how the Blue Devils would try to beat Rush-Henrietta.
What the Blue Devils came up with was a rugged game of keep away, as Victor ran to a 21-7 win over the Royal Comets.
The Blue Devils ran 56 plays, 52 of which had a ballcarrier charging behind an offensive line that resembled a wall at times. Victor finished with 365 rushing yards, 375 total, while it improved to 5-0 after its win at home.
“Our gameplan was “We are a running team’,” Victor senior running back/linebacker Dan Barrow said. “It was little by little, yard by yard.
“Our linemen came up big. We have guys who have played on the team for three years. When it comes to blocking, we listen to them.”
Dan Barrow led Victor’s running back parade with 148 yards on 19 carries. That’s an average of 7.8 yards per attempt. He scored Victor’s final touchdown with 7:46 remaining in the third quarter and was part of the posse that ran out the clock. Rush-Henrietta’s record fell to 2-2.
“Playing ahead was huge for us,” Victor coach Geoff Mandile said. “The second half, they ran 10 plays.
“That was a perfect formula for us.”
Senior quarterback Jamie Trimboli scored Victor’s first touchdown on a 10-yard run late in the first quarter. While Trimboli finished with 76 yards on 14 carries, teammate T.D. Ierlan carried 11 times for 75 yards.
“First of all, they play with three or four tight ends so you have to withstand a power-running game,” Rush-Henrietta coach Joe Montesano said. “At times we were good,
“Our struggles tonight, were on offense. You have to stay on offense to beat a team like that.”
Rush-Henrietta had 141 yards of offense with senior quarterback Jared Gerbino playing on a sprained left ankle. Gerbino and Gavin McDonald, who had 64 yards on 12 carries, were just about the entire Rush-Henrietta offense on this night.
The Royal Comets drove to the Victor 20 early in the Monroe County league game, but turned the ball over there on downs. Gerbino did even the score 7-7 with 8:57 remaining in the second quarter on a one-yard run and his conversion kick.
Victor went ahead again 1:30 later, on an 18-yard touchdown run by Pat Barrow.
“I think it’s great we have four running backs,” Palomaki said. “It’s not the same, they all have different styles.”