The Gar-Field defense spoiled Chantilly's homecoming last night by containing the Chargers' Marchello Squirewell--one of Virginia's top running backs--to lead the Indians to a 17-0 victory in front of about 4,200 in Fairfax.
The Indians held Squirewell, who had 562 yards in Chantilly's first four games, to 93 yards on 22 carries. Meanwhile, Gar-Field's brotherly backfield--Larry and Jamar Atkinson--combined for 302 yards on 27 carries, and quarterback Ryan S. Smith found his brother, Justin Smith, for touchdown passes of four and 12 yards.
Squirewell "was tougher than I thought," Gar-Field senior linebacker Robert Harding said. "He is a big dude, and he runs real hard. We did a pretty good job getting to him."
Squirewell, whose longest run of the game was 14 yards, left the game with 3 minutes 12 seconds left after spraining his right ankle. Chantilly Coach Bob Herb said he did not think the injury was serious.
"The thing that Gar-Field has is good athletes and good speed on defense," Herb said. "We were able to run the ball, but the ones that we broke that might go for 20 or 30 yards against some teams only went for eight to 10 yards against these guys because of their speed."
Gar-Field (4-1) has allowed an average 5.6 points points a game.
"Our defense did a pretty good job, like they have all year," Gar-Field Coach Tony Labozzetta said. "We try to get all 11 guys to the ball as fast as possible. Tonight we did a good job of hanging on to [Squirewell]. We have some pretty good kids on defense."
After going three-and-out twice and four-and-out on its third possession, Gar-Field put together a 72-yard drive for its first score just before halftime. When the drive stalled at the four-yard line, Ryan S. Smith hit brother Justin on a quick slant on third down. The touchdown put the Indians up, 7-0, with 20 seconds left in the half.
A 27-yard field goal by junior Scott Gvozas expanded the lead early in the third quarter.
Just when the Indians needed it most, Harding forced the game's only turnover. Chantilly fullback A.J. DeCenzo's 27-yard run put the Chargers on the 15-yard line, their first time in Gar-Field's red zone. On the next play, however, Harding knocked the ball out of Squirewell's hands after a five-yard run, and senior cornerback Steward White recovered.
GF--J. Smith 4 pass from Ryan S. Smith (Gvozdas kick)
GF--Gvozdas 27 FG
GF--J. Smith 12 pass from Ryan S. Smith (Gvozdas kick)
RUSHING--Gar-Field: J. Atkinson 14-175, L. Atkinson 13-127; Chantilly: Squirewell 22-93, DeCenzo 7-51.
PASSING--Gar-Field: Ryan S. Smith 3-5-2 20; Chantilly: Devine 4-10-0 41.
RECEIVING--Gar-Field: J. Smith 2-16, L. Atkinson 1-4; Chantilly: Hanson 2-20.