SPARTA, N.J. -- The Lanesborough Tigers 14u won the Northeast Regionals of the World Youth Championship tournament by beating the Essex County Predators, 26-6, on Saturday.
The win qualifies the Tigers to now move onto the National tournament held in Canton Ohio in December at the Hall of Fame stadium.
The weekend did not start out as planned as the Tigers' first game on Friday was won by forfeit when its scheduled opponent, Mechanicville, N.Y., could not make it to the tournament.
"My team was at the field suited up and ready to play in the rain and wind, but we were informed by the tournament organizers that the other team had not showed up for registration the night before and had not returned any calls since that time even though they had paid for the tournament," coach Jason Pause said.
With that win/forfeit, the Tigers were set to play on Saturday for the championship and ticket to Ohio.
On Saturday, the Tigers took an early 8-0 lead, using a balanced running attach of Eli Shaw, Mitch Waynick and Damon Pause on offense to drive the ball down the field on its first possession and put it the end zone on a QB dive up the middle by Damon Pause from the 1-yard line. The two-point conversion was successful as well with a halfback pass from Pause to tight end Dominic Carnevale in the back corner of the end zone.
"Our linemen played outstanding and everyone just did their jobs," Jason Pause said. "That seemed to set the stage for the rest of the game as the Tigers scored three more times in the game with TDs by Dominic Carnevale, Eli Shaw and Jackson Powell."
The Tigers also relied on their stout defense to hold their opponents scoreless until the Predators reached the end zone in the last minute of the game after the Tigers we already up, 26-0 ,and making sure everyone got playing time.
"These kids just keep impressing me," Pause said. "We had no information on our opponents or what we would see from them. They were bigger than us, but we were more disciplined and composed throughout and just executed our game plan. No penalties, no turnovers, good blocking by the line and tough defense.
"Our goal was to come down here and compete and see how we stood on a larger stage. I think we definitely accomplished that."
Now the program has to figure out the logistics for its longest road trip of the year, to Canton, Ohio, home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
"It's been a long season and it just keeps getting better," Pause said. "It should be another fun and exciting experience for the kids and families. Again, we really appreciate all the support we have gotten and look forward to representing Berkshire County and New England in the National Tournament."
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