Palmer's pick six launches Falcons to 33-0 rout of St. Francis
Brown Deer bounces back from Pewaukee defeat
Brown Deer - The jumpstart the Brown Deer football team needed against St. Francis on Friday came from an expected source in a most spectacular fashion.
It was still scoreless early in the second quarter but the Mariners (0-3) were threatening. They made the mistake, however, of throwing the ball toward senior All-Suburban defensive back/wide receiver Tray Palmer.
Palmer snagged the interception just inside the goal line headed back the other way.
"He made some cuts, he made some people miss," Falcons coach Rob Green said, "and the next thing you know he was in the end zone (more than a 100 yards the other way).
"That play really fired us up. We needed some kind of kick and that gave it to us."
And that play was the start of a spectacular 26-point second quarter for the Falcons that led to a sound 33-0 rout for Brown Deer.
Team needed a spark
The win was huge mentally for Green and the team. The Falcons were coming off a discouraging loss to archrival Pewaukee (3-0) the week before and needed some energy.
"We knew we needed to play a lot better than we did (against Pewaukee)," he said. "Pewaukee forced us into some things but some of those mistakes were self-inflicted. We just wanted to improve from a team standpoint and we did."
The Falcons (1-1 in Woodland play and 2-1 overall), look to maintain that momentum, when they host South Milwaukee (1-2) at 7 p.m. Friday. The Rockets just earned their first win of the season on Friday with a rout of rival Cudahy.
Green would like to see the offensive explosiveness the Falcons displayed against St. Francis continue against the Rockets.
Palmer's lightning-rod of a play started a cascade for the Falcons. It was followed with a nice drive and then a 10-yard Drew Worth to Pietro D'Amato touchdown pass. Palmer got back into action a short time later when he caught a short hitch pass from Worth and turned it into a 79-yard touchdown.
And then running back Jordan Smith, the younger brother of the Falcons' now-graduated all-world back Chris Smith, took a toss from Worth and headed outside. He found the edge, made two or three cuts his brother would have been proud of and 95 yards later found himself in the end zone.
Palmer finished things off in the third quarter taking another Worth pass 46 yards for a score off a hitch pass.
Line play key in victory
The individual numbers were spectacular for the Falcons as Jordan Smith finished with 106 yards rushing on nine carries while Worth was six-of-nine passing for 186 yards as Palmer caught two of them for 125 yards. All total, the Falcons had 325 yards.
Green said that the offensive line played much better than it did a week ago and noted that people like Smith, Palmer and D'Amato benefitted from that effort.
"They helped everyone execute a little better," Green said. "We just executed a lot better as a whole."
Green also noted that the defense gave up some yards (196, all on the ground) but not any seriously big plays. He said middle linebacker Zack Rhodes had another excellent game ("He really understands cutback lanes," Green said) and noted that defensive lineman Javar Tucker also had a nice outing.
"The kids ran good schemes all night and we were able to fix a few things between last week and this," Green said.
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