LAUREL - The Burlington-Edison Tigers served notice Friday, Aug. 31, that they are going to be a force this season in the Northwest Conference, beating a talented but seemingly overmatched Meridian Trojans team 42-8.
The Tigers could do almost nothing wrong for three quarters, combining an effective running attack with timely passing and a smothering defense.
"They are a very talented team and they were hitting on all cylinders," Meridian coach Bob Ames said. "Our boys played hard and we didn't lack for effort but there are lessons to be learned from this."
Burlington-Edison unveiled a dual-threat running attack that featured hard inside running from Tyler Morrison, who rushed for 36 yards and a touchdown, and killing speed on the outside from sophomore tailback Jae Evans, who scored on runs of 42, 7 and 17 yards.
Tigers' coach Herb Lehman said Evans is a special athlete, one so good that he made his debut on varsity halfway through his freshman year last season.
"He is electric," Lehman said.
But the victory was a total team effort for the Tigers, scoring on four runs and two passes, intercepting four passes and forcing one fumble.
"We have been working very hard this off-season and this fall to try and be a well-balanced team - offense and defense, running and passing," Lehman said. "I think tonight was a testament to how they prepared and how excited they were to finally get out and hit someone in a different uniform."
Burlington-Edison scored 21 in the first quarter and another 14 in the second to lead 35-0 at the half. They scored on their first drive of the second half too, going up 42-0 before finally the Trojans could finally muster an answer. A 13-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Max McGuinn to wideout Relijah McMillan accounted for Meridian's only score of the night. And Burlington-Edison brought out its JV team to finish off the game.
Meridian Coach Ames said it doesn't get any easier for his team next week with a game against Lakewood.
Burlington-Ed. 21 14 7 0- 42
Meridian 0 0 8 0- 8
BE - Jae Evans 42 run (Tanner Gates kick)
BE - Evans 7 run (Gates kick)
BE - Brandon Stransky 33 pass from Dalton Schwetz (Gates kick)
BE - Tyler Morrison 2 run (Gates kick)
BE - Daron Browning 10 pass from Schwetz (Gates kick)
BE - Evans 17 run (Gates kick)
Mer - Relijah McMillen 13 pass from Max McGuinn (Evan Childs run)
First downs 8 6
Rushing-Att-Yards 31-173 15-(minus) 6
Comp-Att-INT 8-15-0 10-27-4
Passing yards 98 110
Penalties-yards 3-35 5-37
Fumbles-lost 1-0 2-1
RUSHING - Burlington-Edison: Jae Evans 7-88, Tyler Morrison 7-36, Damian McDougle 6-1, Timmie Rush 4-6, Jeff Bajema 2-1, Dalton Schwetz 1-35, Damian Arndt 1-1, Hunter Jacobsen 1-0, Carlos Navarro 1-0, Tyson Frazier 1-5. Meridian: Max McGuin 8-(minus)24, Letrez Jones 5-15, Evan Childs 2-3.
PASSING - Burlington-Edison: Dalton Schwetz 7-14-0-87, Timmie Rush 1-1-0-11. Meridian: Max McGuin 10-27-4-110.
RECEIVING - Burlington-Edison: Brandon Stransky 2-53, Austin VonHerbulis 2-20, Daron Browning 1-10, Peter Isaacson 1-8, Jeff Bajema 1-6, Darren Arndt 1-1. Meridian: Sam Chambers 5-58, Relijah McMillan 4-47, Robby Gray 1-5.