Sussex - Issac Newton's third law of motion teaches us that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Unfortunately for the Marquette Hilltoppers, this particular law of physics doesn't apply itself in all ways to the game of football.
When Sussex Hamilton came to Hart Park on Friday night and played a near flawless game, the Hilltoppers reaction was much more opposite than it was equal. The end result was a statement win for the Chargers in the Greater Metro Conference opener for each team, 42-3.
As Hamilton spent the entire game running the ball without peril, 38 times for 241 yards, the Hilltoppers reacted with coughing up a fumble and throwing an interception. The Chargers committed just a pair of penalties, both on special teams, while Marquette was flagged 12 times. Hamilton more than doubled Marquette when it came to first downs in a game that was dominated from start to finish.
Junior Drew Patterson capped the Chargers' 10 play, 56-yard opening drive with a touchdown run to give Sussex Hamilton a 7-0 lead. Patterson is proving to be the Chargers main back early this season, racking up 146 yards on 18 carries and scoring five touchdowns on Friday night. After two games, Patterson has run for 393 yards at nearly 8 yards per carry. But 10 different players carried the ball for the Chargers against a foe that entered the year as one of the league favorites, along with Hamilton.
"That's our offense," Sussex Hamilton coach John Damato said. "Obviously Drew is our workhorse, but we want to get guys multiple touches to get them in the rhythm of the game and go from there."
Two of Patterson's scores came in the second quarter, helping Hamilton to a 21-3 lead at halftime, but his most spectacular run of the game came to open the second half. On the first play from scrimmage in the third quarter, Patterson took the handoff around the left edge and ran past the angle of every Hilltoppers defender. The touchdown went for 62 yards and destroyed any thoughts of a Marquette second-half comeback.
"I am really proud of our kids and how they came out in the second half," Damato said. "Drew had the big run to set the tempo.
"Tonight I think a lot of things went our way with our defense forcing a couple turnovers, which made it easier on the offense."
The visiting Chargers fan base was noticeable throughout the game, nearly matching the home crowd in size and definitely topping it in volume. Year after year, the Greater Metro Conference title has in some way been settled at Hart Park and both sides were well aware.
Patterson gave credit to Marquette and showed respect for the Hilltoppers program, explaining that the preparation for the game was comprehensive. The rivalry with Marquette and what this means for the early-season conference standings was not taken lightly.
"Last year was a good battle with Marquette, and this year we came back strong," Patterson said. "It feels good because we prepared all week for them and knew it was a big game."
Penalties plagued Marquette from start to finish and at some very big moments. Setting up for a fake punt on fourth-and-1 near midfield at the end of the second half, a false start penalty pushed the Hilltoppers back five yards and forced them to punt. On another fourth-and-short in the second half, an illegal shift eliminated a first down, and the drive resulted in a turnover on downs. Even the defense got in on the act, flagged for a 15-yard roughing the passer penalty on a play that would have resulted in a fourth down for Hamilton.
"I'm not going to take the easy way out and say it's the second game of the year," Marquette coach Jeff Mazurczak said. "We just had too many penalties and we need to tighten up the discipline because those mistakes just kill you.
"Those guys played hard against us, when they say their nickname is the Chargers, it's for a reason, man; they came charging out and really got after it."
Soccer team wins twice
It was a good week for the Hamilton soccer team, posting two victories against Greater Metro Conference foe West Allis Central, 9-0, and nonconference neighbor Germantown, 3-1.
First year head coach Steve Provan said his team had no shortage of shots-on-goal in the last two games, outshooting West Allis Central, 48-1, and Germantown, 24-3.
"In both games, we controlled the time of possession," Provan said.
Senior forward/defender Garrett Lee had two goals in the victory against the Warhawks. Junior forward Bret Harvestine had the other goal.
Taylor Paepke, another senior forward, had an assist along with senior midfielder/forward Tyler Wischnefski and sophomore midfielder Matt Young.
"In the 35th minute, Lee's goal was a header off a left-footed cross from Matt Young," Provan said.
Senior goalie Michael Badalamante played extremely well for Hamilton.
"Skip Badalamante had a great match and made a great save on a 1-on-1 breakaway," Provan said.
Against the Bulldogs, one of the highlights for Hamilton was the return of senior defender Chris Murphy, recently recovered from shoulder surgery.
"Chris turned in a great performance playing center defensive back," Provan said. "Chris scored a goal from about 30 yards out after hitting a bending shot over the keeper's head."
In all, nine different players scored against the Bulldogs.
Others on this year's soccer team at Hamilton include senior midfielder Arturo Sparrow, senior defender Eric Mukachung, senior defender Joe Ammel, senior defender Noah Gall, senior midfielder Ian Kloehn, senior midfielder Connor Leuty, senior defender Andrew McClone, senior defender Brent Reilly, junior defender/midfielder Connor Mcllwee, junior midfielder Drew Witlacil, junior goalie Nick Hahn and sophomore forward Kyle Wischnefski.
"Scoring nine goals with nine different players, it shows that this team is not selfish," Provan said. "And that all players on this team are capable of scoring, and that they're playing together as a team."
Upcoming matches for Hamilton will be Wednesday at Brookfield East, Friday at home against Onalaska and Saturday at home against La Crosse Aquinas.
Paulson leads runners
Ashlyn Paulson ran to a solid fifth place with her time of 15:48 in the Homestead Highlander Invite on Friday, held at Tendick Park in Saukville.
Paulson led the Sussex Hamilton girls cross country team to sixth place among 10 teams. Batched into a pack behind Paulson, Hamilton's next four runners to cross were Katlyn Pollari (28th, 17:09), Hannah Jeffers (31st, 17:13), Taylor Burns (33rd, 17:13) and Molly Lucas (34th, 17:15).
The Chargers scored 131 points, just ahead of Cedar Grove Belgium (132). Wisconsin Lutheran scored 52 points and won the meet.
On the boys side, Hamilton placed ninth with a score of 207, led by Robert Little's run of 17:45, good for 30th place.
Others for Hamilton included Joshua Desorcy (35th, 17:56), Jack Perriao (42nd, 18:22), Steven Smith (4th, 18:40) and Spencer Ezell (53rd, 19:25).
Sean Thompson and Josh Brochhausen also ran for the boys. Rounding out the girls lineup were Rachel Weiss and Anna Selestow.
- Chris Schuck and JR Radcliffe contributed to this article
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