DOVER — Two late fumble recoveries gave Freedom (1-4, 0-1) a comeback chance, but the Strawberry Crest (4-2, 1-0) defense played a consistent game, eventually sealing the win with an interception. Penalties, specifically personal fouls, against the Charger defense kept the Patriots in the game until the final seconds.
"We got sloppy there at the end. I'm not going to blame it on anything or make any excuses," Strawberry Crest coach John Kelly said.
Strawberry Crest jumped to an early lead and the special teams recovered an onside kick halfway through the second quarter. Though no points came from that, a punt pinned Freedom, which had yet to earn a first down, against the goal line. The Patriots moved the chains, but on the following play the Chargers' Dominick Trigg returned an interception for a touchdown.
Freedom quarterback DJ Grant didn't play the first half. He ignited a drive to the Chargers' 30-yard line with his team trailing by eight in the fourth quarter. But a sack and a bad snap on a punt ended the possible game tying drive in a turnover on downs on the Patriots' 30-yard line.
Bobby Winsler, Times correspondent