Concord at Fulton – – Football – – The Bleacher Denizen – – October 8, 2021 – – by Chuck Krafft

Tonight, your Bleacher Denizen’s journey takes him to Fulton, where the Pirates will host the Yellowjackets from Concord in a non-conference eight man football game. (I really need to learn how to make my blog a bit more high-falutin’ so that I can refer to my travels as an “odyssey.” Alas, I will probably always struggle to be more than a mere Bleacher Denizen.)

Longtime readers may remember that the Bleacher Denizen has frequently run into the Fulton Weather Curse. This is an official phenomenon where the weather frequently acts out in a way to make either the travel or the game itself into a major challenge. Your Bleacher Denizen remembers one football game a few years ago where he did not leave the stadium until midnight because of lightning delays. Other times, freezing weather, slippery roads, or cold springtime rains have made covering Fulton events into a life challenge. One time, there were fierce gale winds that almost blew the BleacherDenizenMobile off the side of the road. (OK, I admit that I did not check out the wind speeds to verify that it was a real gale, but it seemed like one.)

Tonight, there are ominous clouds in the sky that are giving your Bleacher Denizen an eerie deja’ vu feeling!

Fulton enters the game with a 1-5 record while Concord is at 2-4.

Fulton’s Band led by director Brian Wyman started the evening by playing the National Anthem. The band did a solid job. As a professional musician, I always like to salute well-performed music as events. (Here is a link to an original song from my “Chuck Krafft” You Tube page for those who may be curious.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ol3R-ZL9568

Fulton’s Bruce Thelen kicked off to open the game. Bruce Thelen was able to recover his onside kickoff and his Pirates started their opening possession at the Yellowjacket 49 yard line.

Tyler Carpenter covered for Concord on Fulton’s incomplete first down pass. Markus Mills’ second down run to the left earned one yard before he ran into Ethan Rose. On third down, Ryder Hetherington gained fourteen yards to earn a Pirate first down before Tyler Carpenter tackled him.

Markus Mills took the ball up the middle for an eleven yard to earn another first down for his Pirates. Calvin Allen made the tackle for the Yellowjackets.

Bruce Thelen gained three yards on a first down run; Calvin Allen and Brian Helms made the tackle for Concord. Markus Mills gained about five yards on a second down run up the middle; Ethan Rose got the tackle for the Yellowjackets. Markus Mills gained another yard on third down; Brian Helms made the Concord tackle. On fourth down, Bruce Thelen charged up the middle for a three yard gain to give Fulton a first down on the Concord ten yard line.

Markus Mills went to the left for a six yard first down gain; he ran into Austin Obenour. Ethan Rose and Phillip Horrell teamed up to stop Fulton’s second down run for how gain. On the next play, Dakota Garrett took the ball to the right for a five yard touchdown.

Concord stopped Fulton’s extra point run attempt, but a penalty gave the Pirates another opportunity. Ryder Hetherington ran into the end zone on Fulton’s second try to give the Pirates an 8-0 lead with 7:35 remaining in the first quarter.

Fulton’s Bruce Thelen tried another onside kick, but Concord’s Ethan Rose was able to dive on the ball to give his Yellowjackets a first down on the 50 yard line.

Griffin Kus stopped the Concord first down run for no gain. Tyler Carpenter darted to the left side for a seven yard second down gain before he ran into Jadon Podolak and Dakota Garrett. Tyler Carpenter ran to the left for a two yard third down gain; Dakota Garrett made the tackle for Fulton. Tyler Carpenter appeared to make a nice fourth down gain, but a penalty brought the ball back to the Fulton 43 yard line. Tyler Carpenter went to the left to earn fourteen yards and a first down for Concord. Austin Glidden and Caden Kern made the tackle for Fulton. Concord had a first down on the Fulton 29 yard line.

Tyler Carpenter’s first down run to the right gained two yards before Bruce Thelen tackled him. Caden Kern stopped the Yellowjacket second down play for no gain. Bruce Thelen covered for Fulton on Concord’s incomplete third down pass into the end zone. Concord threw an incomplete fourth down screen pass; Fulton took over the ball on downs on their own 27 yard line.

Markus Mills drove to the right for an eight yard first down gain; Ja’Vion Taylor and Calvin Allen made the tackle for the Yellowjackets. Bruce Thelen faked a handoff and went up the middle for seven yards to earn a first down for the Pirates; Calvin Allen made the Yellowjacket stop.

Austin Obenour tipped Fulton’s first down pass out of the air. Markus Mills went up the middle and gained five second down yards before Omarion Culliver took him down. An illegal procedure penalty pushed Fulton back five yards. Zach Saller spun, dove and made a great catch of Bruce Thelen’s third down pass for an eighteen yard gain that gave Fulton a first down on the Concord 35 yard line.

Bruce Thelen’s first down run to the right earned five yards before T.J. Allen and Calvin Allen took him down. Dakota Garrett went to the left for a three yard second down gain before he ran into Logan Lamb. Bruce Thelen launched a beautiful third down pass to Zach Saller, who caught it in stride to give Fulton a twenty-seven yard touchdown. Dakota Garrett went to the right for a successful Point After run. With 36 seconds to play in the first quarter, Fulton’s lead was at 16-0.

Fulton’s kickoff was recovered by Concord on the 50 yard line.

Tyler Carpenter went up the middle for a six yard first down gain. A penalty pushed Concord back. Tyler Carpenter went to the right and broke several tackles on his way to a twenty-five yard gain. Bruce Thelen and Jadon Podolak made a tackle on the Fulton 35 yard line to prevent a touchdown.

The first quarter ended with Fulton holding a 16-0 lead. Concord had a first down on the Fulton 35 yard line.

On the first play of the second quarter, Tyler Carpenter threw a screen pass to Omarion Culliver, who ran for a thirty-five yard touchdown. On the first extra point attempt, an illegal procedure penalty pushed Concord back five yards. Fulton’s Dakota Garrett made a tackle to foil the Yellowjacket extra point run attempt.

With 11:50 left on the first half clock, Concord closed Fulton’s lead to 16-6.

The notorious Fulton Weather Curse made its presence known by sending us a bolt of lightning to force a thirty minute delay in the game. (From what I understand, the Fulton Weather Curse only happens when the Bleacher Denizen attempts to cover their games. Fortunately, the Fulton powers that be still allow me to cover their games. I hope this game is not the straw that gets the Bleacher Denizen banned from Fulton’s premises!!!)

Lewis Fritz’ kickoff was touched by a teammate on the Concord 44 yard line; Fulton started its next possession there.

Markus Mills powered through the line for an eight yard first down gain; T.J. Allen made the stop for Concord. On the next play, Jacob Cook’s hard hit knocked the ball out of the Pirate ball-carriers hands and the Yellowjackets recovered the fumble. (Your aging Bleacher Denizen was not able to see who recovered the ball for Concord. The Bleacher Denizen hopes he is not demoted to covering J.V. games next week!!) Concord had a first down on their own 29 yard line.

Zach Saller pressured the Concord quarterback into throwing a bad first down pass that was knocked down by the Fulton line. Tyler Carpenter’s second down run around the left end went for a forty-seven yard gain before Bruce Thelen tackled him at the Fulton 13 yard line to prevent a touchdown.

A holding penalty on first down ended up pushing Concord back nine yards. Logan Lamb went into the middle for an eight yard gain on the repeat of the first down play; Caden Kern made the tackle for Fulton. Concord incurred a couple penalties on the next play and were moved way back. On the second down replay, the Yellowjacket pass fell incomplete. Tyler Carpenter went to the left for a nine yard third down gain before Jadon Podolak stopped him. Bruce Thelen covered for Fulton on Concord’s incomplete fourth down pass. Fulton took over the ball on downs on their own 15 yard line.

Markus Mills went up the middle for a five yard first down gain; Brian Helms made the tackle for Concord. T.J> Allen and Austin Obenour stopped Fulton’s second down run for a short gain; a penalty moved Fulton back to their own 13 yard line. Bruce Thelen launched a third down pass to Zach Saller, who gained fifty-six yards before Ja’Vion Taylor knocked him out of bounds on the Concord 31 yard line to prevent a touchdown.

Markus Mills went to the left for an eight yard first down gain; Tyler Carpenter made the Yellowjacket tackle. Markus Mills ran over several people on his way to an eight yard gain before Tyler Carpenter tackled him. Fulton had a first down on the Yellowjacket 14 yard line.

Bruce Thelen’s first down run gained three yards before Logan Lam and Collin Thompson teamed up to tackle him. A hive of Yellowjackets stopped the Pirate second down run for a one yard gain. Markus Mills went up the middle to gain six yards before Logan Lamb halted him.

On the next play, Bruce Thelen went to the left side and got into the end zone before he was pushed out of bounds. Markus Mills went through the middle to earn a successful two point conversion for Fulton. With 4:43 to play in the first half, Fulton extended its lead to 24-6.

Concord’s Collin Thompson dove on Bruce Thelen’s kickoff on the Fulton 49 yard; the Yellowjackets started their next drive there.

Tyler Carpenter went up the middle for a ten yard gain.

Tyler Carpenter’s first down pass to Austin Obenour gained five yards. Cole Gannon alertly recovered a second down fumble for the Yellowjackets; they lost two yards on the play. Tyler Carpenter went to the left for a seven yard gain to earn a first down on the Fulton 27 yard line. Austin Glidden got the tackle for the Pirates.

Dakota Garrett and Jadon Podolak covered on Concord’s incomplete first down pass. Tyler Carpenter went up the middle to gain five yards on second down before he ran into Fernando Olvera. Tyler Carpenter completed a third down pass to Austin Obenour for a two yard gain before Bruce Thelen knocked him out of bounds. On fourth down, Tyler Carpenter eluded several tacklers and appeared to earn a first down, but a penalty forced a replay. Dezmond Blair and Caden Kern stopped the fourth down play for a ten yard loss; Fulton took over the ball on downs on their own 37 yard line.

Collin Thompson’s aggressive first down rush forced Fulton’s quarterback into an intentional grounding penalty.

The Fulton Weather Curse reared up once again to force a half hour delay.

It was Homecoming week for Fulton; most of the crowd adjourned to the gym to watch the Homecoming ceremonies. Your Bleacher Denizen remained in the press box and hoped that no one from Fulton would connect him with the unfortunate lightning display.

Madison Bensinger was named homecoming queen and Garner Akin was named king.

After a half hour, everyone returned to the football field to resume the game. It was raining quite hard.

Collin Thompson and Brian Helms teamed up to stop Fulton’s second down run for a one yard gain. Fulton lost a yard on third down when they fumbled the wet football, but were able to recover it. Fulton suffered a bad snap on its fourth down punt attempt; T.J. Allen was able to tackle the Pirate punter on the Fulton 10 yard line. There was about a minute left in the first half.

Griffin Kus and Bruce Thelen teamed up to stop Concord’s first down run for no gain. Ja’Vion Taylor earned three yards on a second down run to the right. Dezmond Blair stopped the Yellowjacket third down run for no game.

The first half ended here with Fulton holding a 24-6 lead.

Because the halftime ceremonies were completed, the second half started after a three minute intermission.

Concord’s Lewis Fritz attempted an onside kick; it was touched too early by a Yellowjacket teammate. Fulton started its third quarter on the Concord 47 yard line.

Logan Lamb and T.J. Allen teamed up to stop Fulton’s first down run for a one yard gain. Markus Mills earned two yards on a second down run to the right before Logan Lamb took him down. T.J. Allen knocked the Pirate third down pass out of the air. Bruce Thelen reacted quickly to recover a bad snap on fourth down; the Pirates lost three yards and Concord took over the ball on downs on their own 47 yard line.

(Remember, the football was soaking wet. The Bleacher Denizen may be using a literary device called “foreshadowing here.” If this seems to be a bit uppity, I’ve not seen anything preventing even mere Bleacher Denizens from using literary devices.)

Tyler Carpenter gained six yards on his first down run; Dakota Garrett forced him out of bounds.

On the next play, Concord fumbled a wet snap and Caden Kern recovered the ball for Fulton.

A swarm of Yellowjackets stopped the Pirate first down run for a one yard gain. Logan Lamb and T.J. Allen teamed up to stop Fulton’s second down run for no gain. Brian Helms recovered Fulton’s third down fumble to give his Yellowjackets a first down on their own 43 yard line.

Tyler Carpenter went to the left for a four yard first down gain before Bruce Thelen knocked him out of bounds. On the next play, Dezmond Blair recovered a Concord fumble to give Fulton a first down on the Yellowjacket 43 yard line.

Bruce Thelen’s first down run to the left earned five yards before Collin Thompson and Logan Lamb collaborated to stop him. Bruce Thelen ran up the middle for a six yard second down gain before Brian Helms and Ethan Rose tackled him.

On the next play, Austin Glidden went to the left for a ten yard gain to give the Pirates a first down on the Yellowjacket 22 yard line.

Logan Lamb and Cole Gannon teamed up to stop Fulton’s first down run up the middle for a one yard gain.

With 6:33 left in the third quarter and Fulton holding a 24-6 lead, the Fulton Weather Curse struck again. There was more lightning and the game was delayed again.

At that point, it was decided to stop the game. Fulton earned its second win of the season by a 24-6 score.

Your Bleacher Denizen thanks Fulton for its apparent patience in tolerating the Bleacher Denizen and the Fulton Weather Curse. I look forward to covering a lot of Pirate basketball again this winter. I’d also like to thank Concord for their interest in the blog (they responded really well to a baseball regional writeup last spring) and will eagerly head there to do some basketball as well!!!

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