DEXTER For a team that has already outscored its opponents 139-15 and has produced consecutive shutouts, the General Brown Lions believe the best is still to come.
The word potential was used extensively Friday night after the Lions blanked visiting Lowville 34-0 in a Section 3 Class C North game at Fisher Field. As in potentially very good, two-way standout Corey Gaffney said. Or we havent even come close to our potential, third-year head coach Tom Frears said.
A couple things are evident from the Lions fast start that put them 3-0 overall, 2-0 league. They have a diverse offense, with any number of weapons, including two first-rate quarterbacks and a bevy of talented running backs.
And their defensive unit, which lost just one starter to graduation, might be as strong as the one in 2010 that helped General Brown to the state Class C championship game.
Weve done OK so far, but there is still a long way to go, Gaffney said after the Lions dealt the Red Raiders (2-1) their first loss of the season. Three games is just a start, so we can get a lot better if we just clean up a few things.
The Lions pounded out 296 rushing yards, passed for 90 more and limited Lowville to just 45 net rushing yards and no passing yards in a dominating performance.
Five different players scored for the Lions, underlining their versatility and depth.
We have a lot of faith in whoever we put on the field, and everybody is rooting for each other, said Frears, whose club was coming off a 69-0 demolition of Adirondack last week. Our talk is always about the next man in doing the job. This is as unselfish a group as Ive had.
Sophomore Zech Pitre continued to grind out the yards, gaining 99 on 11 carries, including a 3-yard touchdown run.
Senior Jake Humerickhouse gained 82 yards on 12 carries and scored on a 10-yard run, while junior backup Colton Erb added 43 yards on nine carries and scored on a short run.
The most impressive performance was turned in by senior quarterback Peter Will.
After losing a hard-fought battle for the starting spot to fellow senior Richard Lagano in preseason, Will stepped in for an ailing Lagano on the second series of the game and the offense never missed a beat.
Will started the scoring with a 2-yard TD run in the first quarter, then hit Colin Lutz on a 25-yard touchdown pass later in the quarter. He finished 6-for-7 passing for 90 yards.
Richard and I push each other hard every day in practice, and that makes us both better, Will said. We have so many good backs and receivers and a great line, it really makes the quarterbacks job pretty easy.
Frears said he was very proud of what Peter did tonight. Hes worked really hard and it was so close as to who would start. But we obviously feel comfortable with him leading the offense.
Lowville actually had the first good scoring chance after Kyle Malik returned the opening kickoff 55 yards to the General Brown 30. But the Lions held on fourth down from their own 16, and the Red Raiders never really threatened offensively again.
We knew we had to bear down and not let them score an early touchdown, Gaffney said. Who knows what would have happened if they had punched one in.
Lowville coach Josh Coffman said his young club is not ready physically for a team like General Brown.
We were a little banged up, but thats not an excuse, Coffman added. They just beat us up on both sides of the ball.
Lowville managed just one first down the opening half, and only six for the game.
If, and its still a big if, this group realizes its potential we can have a very good season, Frears said. But well have to wait until crunch time, when were really pressed and things dont come as easy as they have the first three games.