Big Macs' win has meaning; Hull has 4 scores
By Mike Kovak, Staff writer
With five new starters along the offensive line and without senior running back Chad Hagan, Canon-McMillan faced considerable uncertainty heading into its season opener at rival Trinity.
Could the Big Macs run the football? Heck, could the Big Macs move the football?
Some of those questions were answered emphatically Friday night.
Yes, Canon-McMillan can run the football. The Big Macs can do a lot more than that.
Behind four Mike Hull rushing touchdowns, excellent play from senior quarterback Zach Hoffman and the emergence of Alec Schram and Alex Adams, Canon-McMillan ran its win streak versus Trinity to three with a thorough 36-22 victory.
"Our coaches did an outstanding job getting our offensive and defensive lines ready for this game," Canon-McMillan coach Guy Montecalvo said. "This is an outstanding win. Anytime you can beat a team as good as Trinity, it's meaningful."
It meant even more to Canon-McMillan (1-0) given how it evolved.
The Big Macs showed Trinity (0-1) five different offensive looks, including a four-wide spread and an I-formation.
"We threw a bunch of different formations at them in the first half and those different looks sort of wore them down," said Hull, who turned in another dominant two-way performance. "We gave them a little bit of everything."
Hull gave Canon-McMillan a 6-0 lead midway through the first quarter on a 1-yard run. He tacked on two more short scoring runs in the second quarter and a fourth in the fourth.
Offensively, Hull finished with 82 yards on 24 carries and caught two Hoffman passes for 51 yards. He even recovered an onside kick. Defensively, Hull made 16 tackles - most at or near the line of scrimmage - and broke up a pass in the end zone.
"Hull always plays well against us," Trinity coach Ed Dalton said.
So did Hoffman in his first start versus the Hillers.
The 5-10 multi-purpose quarterback made good use of the rollout as he finished 9 of 14 for 136 yards. He also rushed for 62, all but 20 came after halftime as the Big Macs found huge seams to run through.
Canon-McMillan ran for 13 first downs and had 209 yards rushing after halftime.
"We ran us much offense as we have in a long time and much of that was predicated because we didn't have (Hagan)," said Montecalvo, who picked up career victory No. 223. "I just couldn't be more proud of our offensive line."
That offensive line held an experienced and talented Trinity front four in check by sticking to schemes.
The Big Macs mostly steered clear of Michigan recruit Ken Wilkins and put as many bodies as possible on nose tackle Lashawn Bryant. Eventually, the big runs kept coming.
Adams, the 100-meter dash champion at the 2009 Washington-Greene County Coaches Meet, rushed for 67 yards, all in the second half while Schram, 5-7 receiver, led the Big Macs with 84 yards rushing, 74 coming on a reverse with 6:10 left in the fourth quarter. Schram also led C-M with five catches for 53 yards.
"It was great to see those guys get going," Hull said. "Hopefully, we can keep it up. We have a lot of good players."
Trinity believes it does as well and the Hillers had their chances early.
Trailing 14-12, Trinity's Kyle McWreath blocked a punt and returned it to the Big Macs' 24. The Hillers got as close as the 16 when a false start penalty came at a critical time.
"We turned it over four times and we only down two points," Dalton said. "We miss that field goal and then we don't have the will on that defensive series. We got our will back but we let it go again."
Copyright Observer Publishing Co.