By Doug Gorman
The Mt. Vernon Crusaders opened the 2004 Georgia Christian Athletic Association football season Friday night with a convincing 69-6 victory against Lake Dow.
Mt. Vernon scored touchdowns on its first five series, and built a 36-0 lead at the half.
It didn't really matter if the Crusaders ran or threw the football, they managed to put the ball in the end zone both ways.
"I happy with our performance," said Mt. Vernon coach C.E. Rhoades. "It's a little to early to tell just how good we are going to be, but this is a good start.
Mt. Vernon rolled up more than 400 yards of total offense and held Lake Dow to 113 yards.
The Crusaders simply wore down the out-manned Lake Dow, squad which only dressed 10 players in the eight-man league opener.
Three Mt. Vernon players rushed for over 100 yards with Jackie Wright leading the way with 132 yards. Nathan Cook added 105 yards and Kevin Hall 102 yards en route to the team's victory.
Lake Dow quarterback Joseph Delong tried to keep his team in the contest with a couple of long runs. He also helped his team avoid the shutout with a long touchdown pass to Joshua Hale late in the game.
Mt. Vernon quarterback Clayton Fielder showed he could air out the football too. The junior quarterback connected on two TD passes in the first half, both landing in the hands of Matt Manry.
Manry finished the game with three TDS as he also returned an interception for a score.
In the second half, Mt. Vernon kept the ball on the ground for every play.
In addition to the TD passes for scores in the first half, Mt. Vernon's ground attack was also dangerous as Hall scored on runs of 6 and 57 yards. Cook found the end zone on a run of 56 yards in the first half.
Mt. Vernon continued to roll up points and yardage in the second half, scoring on every series but the last when Lake Down forced a fumble.
Adrian Davis scored his first TD of the season to help increase the lead to 43-0, and Jackie Wright added two second-half scores. Cook scored on a 50-yard scamper.