With a 36-24 victory at Wyandanch on Saturday, the Southampton football team proved that it doesn’t belong in the bottom half of the Division IV standings.
It’s the first victory of the season for the 1-1 Mariners, who were led by Lyle Smith, who rushed for 198 yards on 20 carries and scored four touchdowns. Wyandanch fell to 0-2.
“It’s great to get a win any time of the year, but coming off a loss to Port [Jefferson], a game I thought we could have won, it was nice to see the kids bounce back.” Southampton head coach Edgar “Hikey” Franklin said. “I challenged them all week in practice, and this is big for our confidence, a big momentum builder going into homecoming. It’s a short week of practice, but, hopefully, we get the homecoming win.”
Southampton hosts undefeated Greenport/Southold/Mattituck (2-0, Division IV) Friday night at 7 p.m. in its home opener.
The game wasn’t even as close as the final score suggests: Southampton held a 21-8 lead at halftime against Wyandanch and increased its lead to 36-8 before turning things over to the reserves in the fourth quarter, after which Wyandanch scored two touchdowns.
Smith scored on runs of 65, 5, 15, and 10 yards in the game. He also added a two-point conversion, and had eight tackles and a sack on defense.
Smith had been nursing a hand injury leading up to the game against Wyandanch, but it’s safe to say he’s over any type of injuries.
“I think he gave us more than we expected,” Franklin said. “Whenever a player runs for 198 yards and four touchdowns, he gave you more than what you expected.”
Southampton’s defense also has to get a chunk of credit in the victory. Wyandanch couldn’t get anything going against the first-team defense, except for one play in the second quarter. The Warriors had recovered a fumble on Southampton’s 32-yard line, then threw a quick
27-yard touchdown pass with 9:03 remaining in the first half. But that was all the Mariners defense would allow most of the game.
Thomas Roughan, Matt Wooley, Taylor Sanders, Sammy Osborne and Shaundell Crumpton all had sacks. Shaundell Fishburne intercepted a pass late in the first half.
“I think our defense is going to improve,” Franklin said. “Last week, we focused mainly on our offense. Traditionally, offense takes longer to develop than defense. This week, we had worked more on defense and came up with a good scheme, and it really paid off.”