Football: Loudoun Valley, and Coach Anthony Long, Celebrate Heritage Homecoming

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Photo by Elizabeth Sikora

Photo by Elizabeth Sikora

By Owen Gotimer
LoCoSports Editor-in-Chief

Leesburg (October 25, 2014) – On a night Heritage High School celebrated their Homecoming, the Loudoun Valley High School Vikings had real reason to rejoice as they knocked off the Pride 35-7 to improve to 7-1 on the season including adding to a six game winning streak. Loudoun Valley senior running back Andrew Cordani ran for 201 yards and four scores including a 71-yard touchdown run.

“We started increasing his work load a little bit as we’ve gone through the season. He can handle it well,” Loudoun Valley acting head coach Anthony Long said. “He’s a strong kid, he runs hard.”

The game marked the first homecoming for Long who coached at Heritage for seven years before accepting the offensive coordinator position at Loudoun Valley last season when he lead the Vikings to a VHSL 3A state semifinal.

“It feels good, but more importantly our guys stay focused on everything. One week at a time: we’ve been preaching that all year, same thing as last year,” Long said. “They do a great job with it. It doesn’t really matter who we are playing, we just focus on our stuff.”

That focus really paid off early in the second quarter when the Vikings’ coaching staff called a trick play: a reverse, jet sweep flea flicker which ended with senior quarterback Sully Warner dropping a 47-yard touchdown pass into the hands of the wide open receiver Ryan Malsch.

Loudoun Valley acting head coach Anthony Long served as an assistant at Heritage for seven years before joining the Vikings' staff in 2013. On Oct. 24, Long returned to Pride territory for the first time since his departure. /LoCoSports file photo

Loudoun Valley acting head coach Anthony Long served as an assistant at Heritage for seven years before joining the Vikings’ staff in 2013. On Oct. 24, Long returned to Pride territory for the first time since his departure. /LoCoSports file photo

“We had fun working with it this week,” Long said. “We knew we’d have a chance with them flowing hard one way on the jet so we took advantage of that and snuck in behind. It helps to have a quarterback that can throw the ball 60 to 70 yards.”

While Warner has started at quarterback for the Vikings for the last two seasons, Heritage senior quarterback Cam Knight got only his second start of the season in the Homecoming game after sophomore quarterback Alex Carlin left a game on Oct. 2 with an injury.

“There’s a lot of bright spots at Heritage, and we’re going to be tough years to come,” Heritage head coach Reed Prosser said. “I was really proud of our kids. I think we executed really well. We made a lot of plays we hadn’t been making previously this year. I know the scoreboard shows a little different, but I think we showed a lot of growth tonight.”

Pride senior running back Daniel Adigun certainly added to the excitement of Homecoming and growth of the Heritage football program when he ran for a 59-yard touchdown midway through the third quarter.

“It’s a good token from my last home game, but I would have rather taken the W,” Adigun said.

All the momentum Heritage gained from the Adigun run was quickly muted when 19 seconds later, Cordani went 71 yards to the end zone for his fourth rushing touchdown of the night.

While both head coaches saw highlights during the game, both admit certain mistakes need to be fixed before their Halloween night games: Heritage travels to John Champe as Loudoun Valley hosts Loudoun County.

“Champe’s a good football team,” Prosser said. “We’ll just go back and continue to make plays. When we make plays and execute we do a good job. We’ll just try to polish up the mistakes and get going.”

Loudoun Valley’s problem was not as much a lack of execution, but more a lack of focus against Heritage as the Vikings were penalized 18 times for 142 yards.

“They were penalties that were just focus. We’ll definitely need to fix that because that can’t happen,” Long said.

The Vikings will have a high week coming off the big win against Heritage, as the Raiders of Loudoun County will have to regroup after falling to John Champe on Oct. 24 before they travel to Loudoun Valley for Halloween.

“We have two big games coming up against Loudoun County and Woodgrove,” Cordani said. “We need to play well against them to finish up the season and into the playoffs. I think we have a good run ahead of us, and I think we can make it to states again.”

Passing:
Loudoun Valley
Sully Warner 12-for-19, 203 yards, 1 TD

Running:
Loudoun Valley
Andrew Cordani 20 carries, 201 yards, 4 TD
Elijah Cooper 8 carries, 64 yards
Tyler Stipancic 4 carries, 20 yards
Alex Schray 3 carries
Sully Warner 3 carries
Jacob Stapleton 1 carry

Receiving:
Loudoun Valley
Ryan Malsch 6 receptions, 154 yards, 1 TD
Patrick Hopkins 2 receptions, 15 yards
Aaron Peart 2 receptions, 13 yards
Alex Schray 1 reception, 14 yards
Andrew Cordani 1 reception, 7 yards

Scoring Plays:
1Q 3:16 LV Andrew Cordani 3-yard TD run (Peart PAT)
1Q 1:25 LV Andrew Cordani 5-yard TD run (Peart PAT)
2Q 10:53 LV Sully Warner to Ryan Malsch 47-yard TD pass (Peart PAT)
2Q 6:00 LV Andrew Cordani 15-yard TD run (Peart PAT)
3Q 7:04 H Daniel Adigun 59-yard TD run (Villalon PAT)
3Q 6:45 LV Andrew Cordani 71-yard TD run (Peart PAT)

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About Author

Owen Gotimer has a passion for helping people grow and self-educate through new media. Owen spent his college years at Syracuse University, where he studied broadcast and digital journalism in the renowned Newhouse School of Public Communications. In his "free time", Owen volunteers as a varsity baseball coach at John Champe and is the president of the Jeffrey C. Fowler Memorial Scholarship.

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