Atoms defeated by Bruins in opening home game

Football team falls to 1-2 after Lake Braddock match up


The Atoms football team is now 1-2 after being defeated by the Lake Braddock Bruins during the team’s first home game of the season. The Atoms were previously 1-1 having defeated the McLean Highlanders by a score of 49-22 but losing to the Centreville Wildcats by a score of 42-0.

The Bruins scored right away on the first play of their opening possession with a rushing touchdown following a quick Atoms three and out. The Bruins would score once more in the opening quarter with a quarterback sneak, to go up 13-0 going into the second quarter.

The Bruins scored another touchdown on their first drive of the second quarter. The Atoms ended up committing their first turnover of the game halfway into the second quarter with an interception. Lake Braddock was unable to capitalize off this turnover, but would later receive the ball again and score with another rushing touchdown with 49 seconds left in the half. The Bruins converted on a two point conversion to go up 28-0 at the end of the first half.

Lake Braddock continued their success on all cylinders with a special teams touchdown after scoring on the opening second kickoff return. The Atoms had difficulties with moving the ball down the field and picking up first downs in the third quarter, which contributed to Lake Braddock leading in time of possession. The Bruins scored once more with a long rushing touchdown midway through the third quarter and tack on a field goal to go up 45-0 going into the final quarter.

The Bruins scored their final touchdown of the game five minutes into the fourth quarter to go up 52-0. However, the Atoms refused to be shutout and scored with a touchdown pass from senior Liam Conroy to junior Jack McCrossin with about four minutes left in the game. The Atoms then successfully recovered their onside kick attempt only to have their drive stall around midfield. The game ended with a final score of 52-7 Lake Braddock.

The Atoms struggled to get into the end zone throughout the game and put points on the board. They also had difficulties getting past midfield into Bruin territory because they were unable to pick up first downs to keep their drives alive. “Lake Braddock has always been a tough opponent and penalties hurt us throughout the game” senior quarterback Liam Conroy said.

The team was not able to get into rhythm through the air or on the ground as their passing and running game was not consistent. There were many incomplete passes and running plays that ended up with a loss of yardage. “What hurt us the most was mental mistakes and not doing the best that we could have overall,” senior Matthew Vogus said.

Though the game was tough and the score was rather lopsided, there were positives the Atoms took from the game. “I feel encouraged, everyone played hard to the last second regardless of the score” Conroy said.

The boys will examine the mistakes and miscues they made during the game and look to correct them. “We need to focus on what each position needs to do on every play so that we are all on the same page and are able to execute in upcoming games,” Vogus said.

“Mistakes are a part of football. We will practice hard this coming week and come together as a team and be successful like I know we can,” Conroy said. “If we play hard and limit our mistakes, we have the heart and talent to beat anybody”. Next, the Atoms will face the Jeb Stuart Raiders in their second home game of the season followed by an away game against the W.T. Woodson Cavaliers.