By Joe Skinner
LoCoSports Social Media Editor
Ashburn (October 17, 2015) — You know when the line to get into a football game takes about 40 minutes to get through, the Battle of the ‘Burn is about to go down. One of the biggest and most historic rivalries in the county wrote another chapter in its history book on October 16, as the Stone Bridge High School Bulldogs (4-3) upset the previously-undefeated Broad Run High School Spartans (6-1), 27-13.
As highly touted as the Battle of the ‘Burn is, the first quarter and most of the first half was a defensive battle by both sides. The Bulldogs forced several punts and three-and-outs to take the ball back, but never punched it in until four seconds into the second quarter when junior fullback Joshua Breece scored the first of his two touchdowns in the game.
“The atmosphere is always crazy,” Stone Bridge senior wide receiver Chase Ridley said. “It’s a huge game, the whole community comes and we know it’s a huge game.”
The scoring started to get a little steadier as the second quarter progressed. Breece found the end zone for thesecond time with 4:27 remaining in the half, followed by a three-and-out by the Bulldog defense, and the undefeated Spartans were facing a 14-0 deficit going into the locker room.
“There was an unbelievable job on defense all night,” Stone Bridge head coach Mickey Thompson said. “The story of the game was our defense being able to shut them down.”
Thompson specifically praised the efforts of senior linebacker Matthew Fialdini, who was all over the ball playing both offense and defense.
“[Fialdini] had a hell of a game. You don’t see many high school players play that well on both sides of the ball in a game like this,” Thompson said. “He was on the field the entire time and played well the entire time.”
Going into the second half, Stone Bridge had the momentum completely on their side. After a big fourth down stop when Broad Run was inside the Stone Bridge 5-yard line, Ridley ripped off an enormous 78-yard touchdown run which put the Bulldogs up 20-0 with 6:33 left in the third quarter.
The Spartans didn’t go down without a fight, but when junior running back Meech Hembry went down with an injury early in the game, the Spartan ground game just couldn’t compete with that of the Bulldogs.
“We are 3-3, but we have played some tough teams,” Thompson said. “We are getting better and better and more physical, but we still have a lot of things to clean up.”
Broad Run junior quarterback Kyle Brickerd — who is committed to play lacrosse at the University of Maryland — scrambled for a 43-yard touchdown run to finally put the Spartans on the board 32 minutes into the game.
The Bulldogs’ defense sealed the victory with an interception returned for a touchdown by junior defensive back Dohnavyn Jefferson, which put the Bulldogs up 27-6 with a mere 7:43 remaining in the game. A late touchdown pass by the Spartans proved to be a non-factor in the final result, and Stone Bridge let their presence be known with a huge win on their home turf.
“I’m excited to see where this ends up going,” Thompson said. “I know some people doubt us, but they should never doubt us because we will always be there in the end.”
On October 23, Broad Run looks to get back to their winning ways in their first game at home against the Oakton High School Cougars (3-4) while Stone Bridge gets the chance to knock off two straight undefeated teams next week as they travel to Leesburg to take on the Tuscarora High School Huskies (8-0).
2Q 11:56 SB Joshua Breece 2-yard TD run (Alcorn PAT)
2Q 4:27 SB Joshua Breece 1-yard TD run (Alcorn PAT)
3Q 6:33 SB Chase Ridley 78-yard TD run (PAT failed)
3Q 4:33 BR Kyle Brickerd 43-yard TD run (PAT failed)
4Q 7:43 SB Dohnavyn Jefferson 35-yard INT return TD (Alcorn PAT)
4Q 0:33 BR Kyle Brickerd to Nick Lindenfeldar 3-yard TD pass (Sherman PAT)