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Matt Bodamer throws 6 TD passes in Gator rout of Brockway

Written by: on Saturday, November 19th, 2011


BRADFORD, Pa. – What a difference a year makes.

As a sophomore playing in the District 9 Class A semifinals, Port Allegany quarterback Matt Bodamer threw for a paltry 71 yards and three interceptions.

So what changed between now and then?

“Everything,” the Gators’ junior field general said.  “Our whole offense has changed. And (maybe) I matured a little at quarterback.”

That maturation sure went a long, long way.

Bodamer connected on 18-of-26 passes for 275 yards and six touchdowns as Port Allegany (11-1) rolled to a 49-21 victory via the mercy rule over Brockway (8-4) from Bradford High School Saturday afternoon.  The Gators have advanced to the District 9 championship game for the second consecutive year and it marked the third time in 11 weeks the Gators had defeated the Rovers.

With the 275-yard effort, Bodamer surpassed the 3,000-yard passing mark on the season, giving him 3,161 yards and 41 touchdowns.

Early on, though, Brockway was controlling most facets.  And Port’s offense was, well, largely ineffective.

The Rovers, using a base wishbone formation but mostly calling running plays either up the middle or off-tackle, wasted no time in grabbing a 7-0 lead thanks to the running of Tom Vervoort and Chad Melillo on a 7-play, 63-yard, 3:16 drive.  In fact, by the end of the first quarter, the Rovers had run for 113 yards and had limited Port to just eight plays.

“When our offense isn’t on the field, that’s when we’re hurting,” Matt Bodamer said.

After connecting on only one of his first five passes, Bodamer evened the score when he found Charlie Buchanan on a 56-yard scoring pass with :46 left in the first quarter.  Port widened its margin to 21-7 at halftime as Bodamer hooked up with Nick Conway on a pair of touchdown strikes covering 19 and 13 yards in the second quarter.

“He’s one of the fastest guys on the team,” Gator head coach Mike Bodamer said of Conway.

The Gators invoked the mercy rule and a running clock with three quick scoring passes – plays of 1 and 4 yards to Buchanan and 9 yards to Trevor Neal – to build a 42-7 lead with 3:36 left in the third quarter.

Trent Neal capped the Gators’ scoring with a 23-yard run in the fourth quarter.

Brockway’s Jack Glasl finished the remainder of the game at the helm of the Rovers’ offense – he threw for 82 yards and a pair of touchdowns to Kyle Braun in the fourth quarter spanning 16 and 54 yards.  Braun was largely ineffective himself, finishing with six rushes for minus-11 yards and completing just 3-of-6 passes for 51 yards.

Melillo finished with 84 yards on 15 carries for Brockway and Vervoort added 120 yards and a touchdown on 17 totes.

Buchanan’s three touchdown receptions give him 13 on the season, second on the team to Tyce Miller (14), who surpassed the 1,000-yard mark in receiving for the 2011 campaign.  Bodamer’s six touchdown passes give him 77 career scoring passes.

Reaching the title gives the Gators a shot at redemption.

“We just don’t want the same feeling as last year (when we lost to Curwensville),” Mike Bodamer said.

“Reaching the district championship game has been a goal of ours since the start of the season,” Matt Bodamer said.

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