GLENS FALLS — There has been a whole offseason worth of chatter about who isn’t playing for the Glens Falls Indians this football season.
Be that as it may, after Glens Falls trounced Lansingburgh 67-6 in its Class B North opener Saturday, the ownership change is clearly underway.
The defending state champion Indians scored on nine of their 10 possessions and added another touchdown on a punt return. They outgained the Knights 289 yards to 0.
“They heard, ‘Joseph’s gone, you guys are in trouble now,’” Glens Falls coach Pat Lilac said, referring to Joseph Girard III. “They kind of took that, like, ‘What? This is our team, let’s go out and make a mark for ourselves and show people what we’re made of as well.’”
So despite some different names in the program, Glens Falls is still made of opportunistic offensive and special teams players, and aggressive defenders.
In a game where nearly everything went Glens Falls’ way, the most pleasant surprise came from its special teams play, particularly punt returns. The first one it had went 52 yards, but came with a fumble over to Lansingburgh at the end.
No matter, the next one covered 34 yards, and the one after that resulted in Griffin Woodell’s 37-yard punt return touchdown. In all, Woodell had three returns for 95 yards, Aalijah Sampson had two for 82 and Jackson Brand had two for 61.
“That was my first time ever doing it. It was fun,” the sophomore Woodell said of punt returns.
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“Going into your first game, you’re always concerned about your special teams because you haven’t had a chance to go live against other teams,” Lilac said. “We always put in a little more preparation on special teams, and then the turnover thing. Those are the two things you always try to think about. We had a turnover on that punt return, but I think they made up for it with a couple other punt returns. It’s a solid start.”
Noah Girard, taking over for his cousin Joseph at quarterback, went 8 for 12 passing for 130 yards and four touchdowns. Several of them were the short, read-option variety that almost look like handoffs, but they were highly effective.
Defensively, 12 of Lansingburgh’s plays from scrimmage went for negative yardage.
“We haven’t scrimmaged too much, so we were ready to hit other players, you know? We’re happy,” Woodell said.
Glens Falls scored 27 points in each of the first two quarters, and the entire second half was played with a running clock. Reserve quarterback Aiden Hirsch was in for good with 4:06 left in the second quarter.
“It helped that we jumped out to an early lead, that took a little pressure off us,” Lilac said. “I was pretty pleased with the first half.”