Villanova hands Amherst third straight loss


By Joel Charron

The General Amherst Bulldogs Senior boys’ football team continues to be a work in progress.

The visiting Bulldogs dropped their third straight game, losing 13-0 to long time rival the Villanova Wildcats.

The shutout loss is the Bulldogs second straight shutout and hasn’t scored an offensive touchdown since the opening quarter in their bout against Cardinal Carter to open the season almost four weeks ago.

“It’s heartbreaking to see our offense not putting points on the board,” said Amherst tight end Todd Girard. “Our defense is giving us a lot of breaks but our offense just isn’t getting the job done right now.”


A Villanova defender steps in the way to foil a pass to Amherst’s Max Reiner (5.)

Head coach John Rudak said because of several injuries to their offensive line, the Bulldogs were heading into Friday’s bout with second and third stringers in place.

“We were running the ball hard, but we can’t ask second and third team lineman to do the job of what our others can do,” said Rudak.

Rudak said he doesn’t want to use injuries as an excuse as Villanova played a good game and made adjustments at halftime to stop what was working for the Bulldogs in the first half.

The Bulldogs defense kept the Wildcats in check for the most part in the first half, allowing 15-yard and 17-yard field goals as well as an 80-yard touchdown pass.

Amherst kept up the defensive pressure in the second half, forcing and recovering a fumble on Villanova opening drive, however was unable to convert the turnover into points.

Kyle Goodchild intercepted a Villanova pass in the fourth quarter to give the Bulldogs good field position, however Amherst was unable to find the end zone.

Amherst can take some comfort knowing their defense shut down the Villanova offense in the second half.

“I think our defense gets better and better every game,” said Girard.

Rudak said the team has been progressing nicely throughout the season but felt his team took a bit of a step back against Villanova.

“We got better after game one, we got better after game two and this game, to me were two evenly matched teams, we did not come through this week. That’s the disappointing part,’ said Rudak.

With the three toughest games off their schedule, Rudak believes now is the time where his squad can gain back some of the confidence.

“We’re looking to get our first win against Essex this week,” said Rudak.

“We need to pick up some W’s,” said Girard. “We just need two wins to make AA playoffs. We need to execute and hustle hard in practice. I think we will pull it together the next few weeks, we just need to tighten up some screws and heal our injuries.”

The Bulldogs travel to Essex to take on the Red Raider this Friday at 7 p.m.

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