St. Anne’s-Belfield senior Branford Rogers made sure that last week’s STAB loss looked like an anomaly. Rogers piled up 315 all-purpose yards via the ground game, the passing attack and the return game as STAB rolled to a 36-0 victory over Virginia Episcopal Friday at home.
Rogers even delivered the knockout punch with a late first half touchdown scamper on a quick screen where he reversed field completely to pick up the score. That catch and run made a second half rally by the Bishops a distant hope.
Rogers’ play combined with an incredible rebound defensively for the easy victory. STAB shifted from surrendering 32 points to Bishop Sullivan a week ago to posting a shutout against a revamped, speedy VES team.
“There were two things that really impressed me this week, and that’s how we practiced this week and how we played defense,” said STAB head coach John Blake. “They knew (last week) we didn’t tackle well and play defense well. Tonight we really played defense well.”
A few subtle changes to the front seven didn’t hurt either. Antoine Currie moved over to middle linebacker and piled up eight tackles. Charles Sipe shifted back to defensive line (where the natural linebacker played out of position during the entirety of the 2010 state title run) and immediately became an unblockable presence again in the trenches with six tackles, three tackles for a loss and a sack.
Freshman quarterback Jake Allen went 7 for 13 on the night for 104 yards and a pair of touchdowns while senior ironman linebacker/fullback Shane Palmateer rushed six times for 37 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Rogers rushed for 110 yards on 21 carries to spearhead the rushing attack and had 120 yards on punt returns alone.