AML Football: Gators race past Terrors



Lori Chase
Port Allegany Reporter Argus
October 6, 2011

After spending most of their Week 4 game against Elk County Catholic idling on the sideline, the Port Allegany offense revved up the engines last Friday night at Otto-Eldred. Scoring the first seven times they had the ball – with none of the drives lasting more than 1:20 – while holding the overmatched Terrors to negative yardage in the first half, the Gators sped out to a 49-0 halftime lead, then coasted to a 62-8 victory to improve to 4-1 on the season.

“They definitely bounced back tonight,” Port coach Mike Bodamer said. “They played well on defense. And we got everybody in, which we’ve been wanting to do for the last couple of weeks. We had about five or six different kids score, so that’s nice to spread it around.”

Tyce Miller led the point production in the Gators’ Allegheny Mountain League North Division opener, hauling in three of fellow junior Matt Bodamer’s four touchdown passes – including a nifty 71-yard catch-and-run – during a five-reception, 131-yard night. Bodamer went 11-for-17 for 224 yards before giving way to backup Cory Burr in the third quarter. The running game also showed up for work, with Trent Neal and Trey Miller each finding the end zone twice and Garrett Drabert adding his first touchdown of the season.

“They weren’t long passes. Just get the ball out to him in space and let him do his thing,” coach Bodamer said of Tyce Miller, whose performance kept him among the state receiving leaders. “That’s basically been most of our run game on the outside – just throw it out to Trevor and Nick (Conway) and Tyce, and let them get the ball. Charlie (Buchanan) had a nice one, but I think we had a penalty on that and it was called back. Like I said, that’s what our offense is based on – just get the ball outside and let the kids do what they want – and Tyce had some nice runs.”

Homecoming night couldn’t have started much worse for the Terrors (1-4), who went backward on their first two plays from scrimmage before coughing up the ball on the first of Nick Budd’s two fumble recoveries. Taking over at the O-E 15, it took just one play for the Gators to light up the scoreboard, with Bodamer finding Trevor Neal in the left corner of the end zone and Scott Brookens adding the extra point.

“That first touchdown, Matt actually audibled out of that because he saw Trevor could have that corner,” coach Bodamer said. “It was supposed to be a run play, but he saw Trev had the corner, so he just threw it up to him. Six-foot-four kid, he used his size on that one, and it kind of went from there.”

From there, it was off to the races for Port’s quick-strike attack. Following an O-E three-and-out with Trent Neal’s 15-yard burst up the middle to paydirt, the Gators got the ball right back on the next play from scrimmage when Alex Gular blitzed up the middle and forced another fumble, this one recovered by Tyler Burr. Four plays later they were in the end zone again on a Bodamer-to-Miller connection, and the rout was on. Port would add four more scores before the break, while not allowing the Terrors to cross the 30-yard-line.

With the “mercy rule” in effect and the clock ticking, Otto-Eldred gave the hometown fans something to cheer about on their first play of the third quarter, with quarterback Dakota Vaughn airing out a 65-yard touchdown pass deep down the left sideline to Luke Kerr. After that, though, the Gator reserves clamped down again, forcing another turnover and stopping O-E on downs twice to finish the game.

“The kids definitely bounced back on defense,” Bodamer said. “We changed a few looks here and there so we weren’t in the same spots. I think that seemed to work out pretty well. We expected to win, and they showed they could do it.”

After five weeks, the statewide leaderboard at shows a heavy Gator influence, with Bodamer topping the list in passing yards (1,393) and touchdowns (18). Tyce Miller is tied for third with 32 catches, fifth with 553 yards, and second with nine touchdowns, while Buchanan isn’t far behind in 10th with 25 receptions and tied for fourth with seven touchdowns.

Seeking to stay a game behind AML North leader Coudersport (5-0), which needed overtime to squeeze past Sheffield, 7-6, last week, the Gators head to Smethport for a 7 p.m. Friday kickoff. There, they’ll have to try to slow down running back Karl Lightner, who piled up 145 yards and three touchdowns last week as the Hubbers (1-4) roared past Cameron County, 48-20, to pick up their first win.

“They’ll try to run the ball,” Bodamer said. “They’re big and strong up front, so it’ll be a challenge. The Lightner kid runs the ball pretty well, and (quarterback Kevin) Lord runs the ball really well on the option, so we’ll have to work on that this week. Just keep our offense doing what it is, and look at their tape and see what we can do defensively to stop Lord and Lightner.”

At Duke Center, Sept. 30:

Score by quarters:
Port Allegany 28 21 13 0 62
Otto-Eldred 0 0 8 0 8

First Quarter
Port Allegany – Trevor Neal 15 pass from Matt Bodamer (1 play, 15 yards, 0:05), Scott Brookens kick, 7-0
Port Allegany – Trent Neal 15 run (4 plays, 43 yards, 1:12), run failed, 13-0
Port Allegany – Tyce Miller 2 pass from Bodamer (4 plays, 39 yards, 1:00), Bodamer run, 21-0
Port Allegany – Trey Miller 12 run (3 plays, 52 yards, 0:24), Brookens kick, 28-0

Second Quarter
Port Allegany – Tyce Miller 71 pass from Bodamer (1 play, 71 yards, 0:18), Brookens kick, 35-0
Port Allegany – Garrett Drabert 15 run (3 plays, 32 yards, 1:14), Brookens kick, 42-0
Port Allegany – Tyce Miller 30 pass from Bodamer (4 plays, 47 yards, 1:20), Brookens kick, 49-0

Third Quarter
Port Allegany – Trey Miller 4 run (9 plays, 54 yards, 4:34), kick failed, 55-0
Otto-Eldred – Luke Kerr 65 pass from Dakota Vaughn (2 plays, 65 yards, 0:58), Sam Colebert run, 55-8
Port Allegany – Trent Neal 4 run (3 plays, 14 yards, 1:30), Brookens kick, 62-8

Team Statistics: PA O-E
First downs 21 4
Rushes-Yards 37-223 29-7
Comp-Att-Int 13-19-1 4-12-1
Passing Yards 239 104
Total Yards 462 97
Fumbles-Lost 4-2 4-4
Punts-Avg. 1-21.0 5-31.6
Penalties-Yards 7-62 8-100
Total Plays 56 41

Individual statistics:
Rushing: Port Allegany – Trent Neal 10-67, 2 TD; Trey Miller 6-48, 2 TD; Garrett Drabert 6-42, TD; Matt Bodamer 10-50; Alex Gular 2-16; Johnny Sena 4-9; Cory Burr 4-1. Otto-Eldred – Seth Bigley 1-9; Sam Colebert 3-7; Luke Kerr 11-6; Clay Pinner 1-1; Dakota Vaughn 13-(-16).

Passing: Port Allegany – Bodamer 11-17-1, 224 yards, 4 TD; Burr 2-2, 15 yards. Otto-Eldred – Vaughn 4-12-1, 104 yds, TD.

Receiving: Port Allegany – Tyce Miller 5-131 yards, 3 TD; Trevor Neal 2-33, TD; Charlie Buchanan 1-27; Rickie Bova 1-23; Nick Conway 2-17; Joel Schroll 1-7. Otto-Eldred – Kerr 2-60, TD; Derek Lyman 1-41; Bigley 1-3.

(Helmets courtesy of

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