NORWALK - Early in the fourth quarter, the remnants of Hurricane Issac made their way into Norwalk. However, for the entire game, a different sort of storm was engulfing Whitney Field - the Calvert Senecas.
With a little bit of thunder and a lot of lightning, Calvert picked up its third-straight victory over Norwalk St. Paul 34-20.
The thunder came from a combination of a power rushing attack and a suffocating run defense.
After marching 15 plays for a first-quarter touchdown, the Flyers were unable to sustain a drive the rest of the game.
The lighting came from a quick-strike attack that put up points in a hurry. During a 21-point second-quarter spurt, Calvert scored touchdowns from 60, 70 and 59 yards out.
"We're very proud," Calvert coach Todd Fox said. "That's a very good football team that we were able to compete with for four quarters. Our guys did everything we asked them to."
Calvert 34, St. Paul 20
Calvert72106 - 34
St. Paul8660 - 20
C - Brendan Deats 24 run (Michael Smith kick), 10:27
SP - Matt Starcher 12 run (Michael Griffin run), :11
C - Tyler Long 60 run (Long run), 11:50
C - Nick Warnement 70 pass from Eric Elchert (kick failed), 10:05
C - Warnement 59 pass from Long (Smith kick), 4:38
SP - Paul Carson 65 fumble return (run failed), 4:29
SP - Griffin 6 run (run failed), 5:40
C - Long 12 run (kick failed), 9:54
RUSHING: Calvert - Long 17-107; Dan Kwiat 14-89; Deats 3-34; Austin Ball 3-22; TEAM 3-(minus 25). St. Paul - Griffin 19-124; Devin Smith 13-44; Starcher 8-1; Jesse Bross 5-16.
PASSING: Calvert - Long 5-9-1-103; Elchert 1-1-0-70. St. Paul - Starcher 3-10-1-40.
RECEIVING: Calvert - Warnement 3-131; Jared Thompson 2-15; Derek Herzog 1-27. St. Paul - Anthony Ghazoul 1-18; Griffin 1-11; Connor Smith 1-11.
The Calvert defense felt it needed to make a statement after a tough first week against McComb.
"We knew what we had to do," senior middle linebacker Dan Kwiat said. "We know we didn't perform at our best last week, but we knew that we had to come out and show them who we are. We picked it up at practice, put in the extra effort. We concentrated on what they do. They run the ball and we took care of it."
After allowing more than 500 yards last week, Calvert held St. Paul to 185 on the ground and 225 total.
While the defense took care of the Flyers, the offense moved the ball at will.
Calvert took the opening kickoff and needed just four plays to find the end zone. Brendan Deats broke through the St. Paul front and rushed 24 yards for the game's first score.
St. Paul answered in the closing seconds of the opening frame. A 15-play, 84-yard drive culminated in a 12-yard touchdown run by quarterback Matt Starcher. A two-point conversion run by Michael Griffin put the Flyers up 8-7.
The lead didn't last long.
Two plays and 21 seconds of game time later, quarterback Tyler Long raced 60 yards for a touchdown, then tacked on a two-point conversion to put Calvert back in front 15-8. The Senecas would not trail again.
Long rushed for a team-high 107 yards on 17 carries and threw for another 103. He credits the week of practice and the scout team for his big night.
"Scout squad, they definitely helped us out," Long said. "We had an amazing week of practice and I give all my credit to them. They pushed me, they pushed Dan, they pushed our line, they pushed Nick (Warnement), they pushed everyone on our team. It was nice to get that so we could come out here and play.
Adam Recker forced and recovered a fumble on St. Paul's next drive, setting things back up for Calvert's offense, when Fox went to his bag of tricks.
Long tossed the ball out to Eric Elchert on the sideline, who then connected with a wide-open Nick Warnement for a 70-yard touchdown.
The Seneca defense forced St. Paul into a three-and-out, and then put together a nice, long scoring drive. Well, long by their standards.
Calvert covered 77 yards in six plays. Long hit Warnement on a screen and the first-year senior broke tackles and raced 59 yards to the house.
"Nick Warnement has made a difference," Fox said. "He's got a great supporting cast around him so he's just a nice piece of our puzzle."
St. Paul finally got a bounce to go its way on the ensuing kickoff. Jesse Gross was hit hard and fumbled. But the ball popped right into the hands of Paul Carson who took it 65 yards for a touchdown, cutting the Calvert lead to 28-14 at the half.
St. Paul inched closer in the third at 28-20 after a 6-yard scoring run by Griffin. The Flyers got the ball back and had a chance to tie, driving inside the Calvert 30.
But Griffin was stopped in the backfield on a fourth-and-2 play that put the momentum back on Calvert's sideline.
"We knew we had to take care of it; we knew we couldn't let them get ahead," Kwiat said. "We knew what we had to do. We definitely put it to them. ... It was a great lift to the game."
Calvert finished off the Flyers by marching 70 yards in nine plays. Long rushed in his second score of the night, this time from 12 yards out to cap off the evening.
"Tyler Long, he was our secret for a long time coming into this season," Fox said. "He's not doing anything we didn't expect he could do. What he does, he gives us a whole new dimension with the other guys we do have, Nick Warnement and our great receiving core, and Dan Kwiat and our other running backs."
"Our fear was that, watching them last week against McComb, their quarterback and (Warnement), they have game changing speed, both of them," St. Paul coach John Livengood said. "Both are excellent athletes. ... They were able to utilize that and they hit big plays on us today. What we saw and what they hit on us we prepared our kids for, but they out-executed us."
Kwiat added 89 yards rushing on 14 carries. Warnement caught three passes for 131 yards and the two scores.
Long is happy to have so many weapons at his disposal.
"It's good for me, because I have more options," Long said. "It helps me a lot because it's not a one person sport. Everybody needs to chip in and it's really nice to have everybody put their effort in and come out here and do what wee need to do and get the W."