Marauders take the Crown


Angelina Amilibia

On Friday, Sept. 15, Marcus traveled to Mansfield to take on the 2-0 Tigers. The Marauders, who lost at home the week before, sought to bounce back against a high-powered Mansfield offense averaging 26 points per game.

The Tigers, however, were playing for more than a win. It was their Homecoming night.

After performances from the Mansfield band, color guard, cheerleaders and drill team, the game got off to an explosive start.

In the first quarter, the Tigers picked up two big sacks on Marcus’ recently named starting quarterback, Rasheed Noel. Shortly after, Mansfield’s offense flashed its firepower with a 60 yard reception and touchdown that put them up seven points.

But the Marauders soon fought back as Noel connected with receivers Brayden Crinklaw and Grant Hutcherson for multiple short completions. Later on in the drive, Marcus’ star running back, Justin Dinka, burst through the secondary for a 61-yard touchdown run tying the game at seven at the end of the first quarter.

With their now established confidence, the Marauders went into the second quarter strong.  The red and silver would go on to score 10 more points before the half including another explosive touchdown run by Dinka and with help from the kicker, John Mayers, who hit a 35-yard field goal attempt. After another touchdown from the Tigers, the Marauders went into the half up 17-14.

Both teams headed into the locker room, but certain Mansfield players didn’t get their break yet. A few of these Tigers were nominated for Homecoming King, and the coronation was in front of the Mansfield home audience. Among this group was running back Avery Chatman, who is averaging 94.5 yards per game. After many candidates were mentioned and applauded, it was Chatman who stood clad in football pads, cleats and the Homecoming crown.

The ceremony was fun for the home crowd and Chatman, but the Marauders looked ready to steal the throne.

For the rest of the game, the Marauders would hold the Tigers to a scoreless outing. And on the other side of the ball, Noel got into an early groove, finding wide receiver Blake Covin for a 15-yard gain and a first down. On the ensuing play, Noel and Covin combined for a big play again resulting in a touchdown that put the Marauders up 24-14.

In the final quarter, Dinka put the icing on the cake with another massive 63 yard touchdown rush alluding tackler after tackler.

Though it was a big night for the Mansfield tigers, the Marauders capped off a terrific win on the road to improve their record to 2-1.