Not many football teams can overcome seven penalties on its first drive and still score a touchdown, but that's what Guilderland did against LaSalle.
The Dutchmen (1-1) were flagged for seven false starts, but they found the end zone on the first of quarterback Ryan Smith's four touchdown passes as they defeated the Cadets 28-13 last Friday at LaSalle Institute in Troy.
Guilderland coach Dan Penna said his team might have been a little too anxious to play following the Dutchmen's opening week 28-13 loss to Saratoga Springs.
I think part of it was that some of the guys were excited to be out there, and a little of it was coming from the [LaSalle] stands, said Penna. "But despite the penalties, they still able to score on that first drive."
The game was a rematch of last year's Section II Class AA quarterfinal game, which Guilderland won 34-33 in overtime after rallying from a 27-19 deficit in the final 15 seconds of the fourth quarter. This time, though, the Dutchmen led throughout.
"It was a nail biter the last time, so it was nice to be up four touchdowns on them this time," said Penna.
Smith got Guilderland on the scoreboard with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Stanish. Then, Smith threw an 11-yard scoring strike to Dylan August in the second quarter to put the Dutchmen ahead 14-0.
Any comeback hopes that LaSalle (0-2) had evaporated in the third quarter. Smith connected with August on a 22-yard touchdown pass and completed a 23-yard scoring toss to Stanish to increase Guilderland's lead to 28 points.
LaSalle scored twice in the fourth quarter to avoid the shutout, but the Cadets could not avoid their second consecutive loss.
The game won't have a direct impact on Guilderland's or LaSalle's playoff hopes, as it was a cross-divisional game. But Penna said the victory was a good way for his team to put its opening week loss to Saratoga behind it.