WILKES-BARRE – As lopsided as the final score was on the scoreboard, GAR knows there is still work to do after Saturday night's 42-0 victory over Nanticoke.
Because little mistakes in two weeks in the District 2 Class 2A playoffs could mean the end of the season.
Offensively, we can't end up in situations where we're dropping the ball, fumbling snaps, this and that, GAR coach Paul Wiedlich Jr. said. Those are little things that will cost us, so we have to improve on those.
They are the glaring mistakes. When we break the film down (Sunday), I'm sure there's going to be more.
First, a couple positives.
Sophomore running back A.J. Mouzone, starting in place of injured junior Rich Sickler, rushed for a career-high 110 yards and three touchdowns on just 15 carries.
It was only the second 100-yard rushing performance by a Grenadier this season.
Quarterback Corey Moore also dropped a perfect 37-yard touchdown pass over a defender to Rashaun Mathis for GAR's second score.
And senior Lucas Benton posted his fifth 100-yard receiving game and caught his 10th TD pass of the season.
The 49-yard scoring reception was typical Benton as the speedster plucked a pass on a crossing pattern at his shins, broke a tackle and scooted down the left sideline for a 35-0 advantage in the third quarter.
Now, those glaring mistakes.
GAR (6-3) allowed five sacks for 34 yards of losses. The Grenadiers also failed to score twice in the red zone.
The first time was after a holding penalty at the Nanticoke 17-yard line was followed by a wild shotgun snap that resulted in a 17-yard loss and a turnover.
The other came late in the game when GAR couldn't punch it in after a first-and-goal from the 10.
Fortunately for GAR, Nanticoke (3-6) failed to capitalize. The Trojans had played well in stretches against the better teams in Division 2A-A of the Wyoming Valley Conference, but Saturday wasn't one of those cases.
Instead, Nanticoke stumbled throughout, turning over the ball three times including interceptions by Benton and Kyle Merth. Senior running back Maurice Wood finished with 42 yards on 10 carries, but most of it came late in the contest.
That comes with being a young team, Nanticoke coach Ron Bruza said. Like I said from day one, we don't know how to win. It seems like every time we get some momentum, we find something to screw it up or shoot ourselves in the foot.
GAR 42, Nanticoke 0
GAR – A.J. Mouzone 7 run (Luke Height kick), 10:27
GAR – Rashaun Mathis 37 pass from Corey Moore (Height kick), 8:21
GAR – A.J. Mouzone 1 run (Luke Height kick), 6:21
GAR – A.J. Mouzone 1 run (Luke Height kick), 0:50
GAR – Lucas Benton 49 pass from Moore (Height kick), 8:41
GAR – Mathis 2 run (Height kick), 5:04
RUSHING – Nanticoke, Pat Hempel 4-20, Ron Kotz 5-9, Blake Balderrama 7-(minus-1), J.T. Levendowski 3-(minus-2), Maurice Wood 10-42, Tyler Myers 1-8, Brad Yanus 2-1. GAR, Benton 3-82, Mouzone 15-110, Moore 9-(minus-19), Zachary Gonzalez 3-14, Mathis 6-43, team 2-(minus-18).
PASSING – Nanticoke, Levendowski 7-13-2-62. GAR, Moore 7-14-0-167.
RECEIVING – Nanticoke, Hempel 6-56, Wood 1-6. GAR, Benton 6-130, Mathis 1-37.
INTS – GAR, Benton, Kyle Merth.
MISSED FGS – none.