PLANTATION, Fla. – After traveling out of state in Week 1, the American Heritage Patriots (2-0) played host to the Don Bosco Prep Ironmen (0-1), who traveled from New Jersey. The 1,200 miles that the Ironmen traveled did not pay off as they will return home after a 21-0 loss at the hands of the Patriots.
THE INFO: American Heritage received the opening kickoff, but was unable to do much on their opening drive. Quarterback Jason Brown faced serious pressure in the pocket and the Patriots were forced to punt the ball away on a three and out.
The Ironmen special teams lived up to their name when they blocked the Patriots’ punt attempt and recovered the ball deep in enemy territory. Despite their field position, Don Bosco failed to put points on the board on their opening drive.
Later in the first, Brown cut outside on a run play and won the footrace to the end zone to put his Patriots on the board at 4:13, 7-0.
The Ironmen threatened to score late in the second quarter but were forced to settle for a field goal attempt. The American Heritage special teams got to the kicker before he could put the ball through the uprights and blocked the attempt.
The Patriots took over on the 20-yard line, but quick pick ups to Dontavius Butler and Miles, Jones plus a 30-yard pass to Anthony Schwartz for a key third down conversion, set up American Heritage in the red zone.
PHOTO GALLERY: Get a look at some of the action in photos from the game
Brown threw towards the end zone two plays later, eyeing a receiver making a cut, but Don Bosco safety Kevin Brennan read him and intercepted the pass. With the interception, the Patriots’ threat was eliminated and the half drew to a close.
With under a minute remaining in the third quarter, the Patriots put some distance between them and the Ironmen when Laress Nelson scored on a sweep play that went for 40 yards to put the Patriots ahead 14-0.
In the fourth quarter, Don Bosco’s Wankeith Akin Jr. got the better of Brown when he intercepted him on a comeback route. However, the Ironmen blew their opportunity to cut the game to just one score when they fumbled on their next rushing attempt.
Abraham Alce, the Patriots’ workhorse in the backfield, found the end zone on the ground near the end of the game to put American Heritage up 21-0.
KEY PLAY OF THE GAME: Just before the start of the fourth quarter, Patriots receiver Miles Jones broke off a 38-yard run that pushed American Heritage into Ironmen territory. In a position to score, Brown found Nelson for a short pass on a sweep play to widen the gap between the two teams and put the pressure on the Ironmen defense in the fourth.
STAR OF THE GAME: Laress Nelson stood out on the Patriots offense in tonight’s shutout of Don Bosco. Brown repeatedly found Nelson outside on short screen passes that Nelson was able to turn into big gains for the Patriots.
Apart from leading his team in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns tonight, Nelson also made an impact on special teams, returning kicks with Miles Jones.
DID YOU KNOW: Heading into tonight’s game, the Don Bosco Ironmen were ranked #21 in the nation per the USA Today Super 25. With the shutout on the road, the Ironmen are likely to fall out of the list. On the other hand, American Heritage may have earned back their spot in the Super 25. Preseason, the Patriots were ranked #6 before dropping out after a preseason loss at the hands of Booker T. Washington. They have since defeated Colquitt County (GA) and Don Bosco Prep (NJ).
QUOTABLE: “This shows what kind of team we have, I wouldn’t have made our schedule this way if I didn’t feel we had a team that could compete with the best,” American Heritage head coach Patrick Surtain said. “Obviously, Don Bosco is a storied program, they have great tradition and are a hell of a football team. We came in and played our brand of football and if we come in and do that each and every week, then we’re going to be successful.”
WHAT’S NEXT: Up next for the Ironmen is another out of state road game, this one against St. Joseph’s Prep (1-0) in Pennsylvania. As for American Heritage, they will travel to Miami next week to take on Miami Northwestern (2-0), who are fresh off a win on the road over Columbus.