Ironmen defeat Reserve Gold in flag football

  • Published
  • By Mike W. Ray
  • Staff Writer
The Navy grounded the Air Force in both flag football games Tuesday.

The VQ-3 Ironmen were winless in three outings before their strong-armed scrambling quarterback, Phillip Akeem Thomas, returned from deployment. Since then, the Navy team has won two consecutive games.

VQ-3 bested Reserve Gold, 19-6, Tuesday afternoon; in fact, the game ended with an Ironman quarterback sack. In the other game Tuesday, Navy Security recorded a 10-point victory over Reserve Red, 16-6.

The Ironmen's first possession illustrated their newfound ability to overcome adversity.
On the Navy's opening drive, a pass from Thomas to receiver Victor Jean advanced the Ironmen to their 20-yard line, but a penalty pulled the ball back to the 4. So, Thomas fired another pass to Jean at the 21, and he dashed almost to midfield before he was stopped.

On first down, the center hiked the ball over Thomas' head because of 25 mph wind gusts, which moved the ball back to the Navy's 25. Thomas responded with a quarterback keeper that moved the Ironmen back to midfield.

A pass advanced VQ-3 to the Airmen's 29, but a quarterback sack pushed the Sailors back to midfield. Thomas responded with another keeper that gained 23 yards, and passes to Jean and to Shayne Hughes added 12 more yards. From the Gold 5, Thomas threw a touchdown spiral to Jacob Jones, who also caught the PAT pass.

Passes from Gold quarterback T.J. Milliken to receivers Thomas Carter and Chris Jackson gained 24 yards before the Airmen were forced to "punt" early in the second quarter. Two plays later, Thomas was intercepted by Jackson, who ran it back 13 yards for the TD. The extra-point attempt failed, but Gold now trailed by only one point, 7-6.

The Sailors proceeded downfield on Thomas spirals to Lindsey Key, Matt Villalobos and to Jean, which put VQ-3 at the Airmen's 17. From there, Thomas scampered into the end zone, raising the score to 13-6.

Gold went three-and-out, and VQ-3 was at midfield when the first half ended.

In the second half, the Airmen were forced to "punt" twice, the Sailors once.

On Gold's opening drive of the second half, backup quarterback Ralph Hawkins flipped a push pass to Joe Huizar that was good for 6 yards, and a pass from Hawkins to Carter tacked on 12 more. But a spiral to Brandon Thompson was incomplete, and a Hawkins pass to Chris Webb was broken up by Jean. On third down, Hawkins lateraled to Huizar, who launched a pass to Thompson; the receiver caught the pass out of bounds, so Gold again had to "punt."

On VQ-3's last possession, Jones caught a 15-yard pass from Thomas, and Hughes snared a pair of passes that picked up 44 yards.

Under pressure from Chris Montalbano, Thomas threw an incompletion, then raced to the Gold 6 on a keeper. Another keeper produced no gain, but on fourth down Thomas lofted a TD aerial to Hughes, who made a one-handed catch and spiked the ball for emphasis. The point-after attempt failed, but VQ-3 raised its lead to two scores, 19-6.
On Gold's last possession, Hawkins was pressured continuously, and on the final play of the game Carter was sacked by Ironman Brandon Ward.

The outcome resulted in identical 2-3 records for VQ-3 and Reserve Gold.

Scores from other recent games included: 33rd CBCS 27 vs 966th AACS 6; 72nd Med Group 39 vs Contracting 13; VQ-4 Shadows 46 vs 31 CBCS 19; MFR 47 vs 76 SMXG 8; SCW-1 38 vs Reserve Red 21; Gym Rats 15 vs Reserve Gold 10; Med Group 45 vs 76 SMXG 8; Contracting 46 vs 31 CBCS 12; MFR 27 vs 966 AACS 7; 33 CBCS 19 vs VQ-4 Shadows 13.

As of Thursday morning, Navy Security had a 2-4 record and Reserve Red was 3-2. The 72nd Medical Group (5-0) and the Gym Rats (4-0) remained undefeated in the base flag football league. Nipping at their heels was M.F.R., with a 4-1 record. At the other extreme were the 76th SMXG and the 31st CBCS, both of whom have lost all five of their contests.