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Boone avoids déjà vu, escapes with win

On Friday night in Boone’s conference opener, a bad case of déjà vu for the Blazers nearly derailed their 21-13 win over Volunteer.
In the early going of 2011, the Daniel Boone football team suffered from fumbleitis, the turnover bug and all around bad luck. Call it what you like, but turnovers were a major concern and cause of Boone limping through the first few games of the season last year.
After a stellar start to 2012, the Blazers (3-0, 1-0) can look at their turnover ratio as one reason for the team’s success. However, in their Aug. 31 game against Volunteer, Boone was lucky to sneak away with the win after turning the ball over five times.
The Blazers were once again strong out of the gate, scoring on their opening possession when running back Cliff Sanders scampered into the end zone from seven yards out. Zack McCracken’s extra point put Boone ahead early, 7-0.
After a Blazer defensive stop, Boone appeared poised to break the game open with more points, but the momentum switched when Blazer quarterback Jacob Littleton was intercepted and the ball returned 62 yards for a Falcon touchdown.
With the Boone defense holding Volunteer in check, Littleton shook off the early interception during the second quarter, hitting Michael Osterman for a 12-yard touchdown pass. Those would be the only points of the second quarter as the game headed to the half with the Blazers ahead 14-7.
With the Blazer turnovers piling up in the second half, the Boone defense remained unfazed with several big stops preventing the Falcons from tying up the contest. Two blazer turnovers in the third quarter were answered by the Boone defense refusing to allow Volunteer points.
A scoreless third quarter kept the contest close, but another Boone turnover in the fourth brought Volunteer within a point of tying following a Falcon touchdown. Fortunately for Boone, Volunteer missed the extra point, keeping the Blazers in front 14-13.
Midway through the fourth, Boone’s running quarterback Dustin Chandler gave the Blazers their biggest advantage of the game on an 18-yard touchdown run, which, following the extra point, stretched the Blazer lead to eight points. Volunteer wouldn’t reach pay dirt again, as the Blazers escaped 21-13.
Despite the five turnovers, the Blazers were well balanced on offense, rushing for almost 200 yards and passing for 130. Sanders was Boone’s best rusher, finishing with 144 yards on the ground to go with his first quarter touchdown.
But it was the Boone defense that had the biggest impact, holding Volunteer to just over 100 yards of total offense.
Boone will hit the road for the first time this season in their next contest on Sept. 7 at Happy Valley.