JV Football Falls to the Vista Ridge Rangers 34-7

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  • Joseph Kubelka ’20 completes a pass before being tackled.

  • Jaiden Heinlein ’18 successfully kicks a field goal after a touchdown.

  • Connor Cooper ’20 hands the ball off to running back Preston Neidhart ’20.

  • Tre Guerra ’20 rushes up the field after escaping the grip of a group of Ranger defenders.

  • Malachi Woodard ’20 takes down a Ranger quarterback while Justin Gillette ’20 rushes to help.

  • Connor Cooper ’20 passes to an open receiver.

  • Kam Colvin ’20 tries to shake off a Vista Ridge defender.

  • Cody Crider ’20 sprint up the field after receiving a kick with Kam Colvin ’20 at his side.

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JV football faced off against the Vista Ridge Rangers at the Warrior Bowl, on Thursday, Sept. 21, in the final game before district season began. Unfortunately, this game ended with a 34-7 loss for the Warriors. Despite this, the Warriors battled hard and displayed multiple good plays both by individual players and the team as a whole.

“Fundamentally, football wins games, so we need to go back and work on our tackling skills for defense, and we need to make sure that we’re fitting where we’re supposed to,” defensive coach Jeff Wilkerson commented after the game. “We have to up it a little bit; we need to up the intensity and be a little more physical than what we have been.”

In the beginning of the first quarter, Vista Ridge gained possession of the ball, and after a strong tackle from Sahith Thumma ‘19 at the 20-yard line, the Rangers scored and kicked an extra point. Eventually, once the Warrior offense had pushed hard against the Rangers defensive line, they gained the ball back and scored another touchdown with three minutes left in the first quarter, making the score 14-0.

To start out the second quarter, the Warriors showed a relentless drive when linebackers Justin Gillette ‘20 and Johnangel Luna ‘19 formed a powerful wall against the Rangers, as well as when Sam Bolger ‘18 blocked multiple passes from the Rangers. However, with 5 minutes 23 seconds on the clock, the Rangers scored another touchdown and secured an extra point, which made the score 21-0.

“We could definitely be more physical,” Cody Crider ‘20 said, who made multiple important tackles and a stunning interception in the middle of the fourth quarter. “Instead of playing so light and letting them push us around, we needed to always hit hard.”

With the ball in their possession, the Warriors began the second half of the game with a renewed vigor from witnessing Warrior Pride perform at halftime, something which Abri Rochte ‘20 described as, “having a lot of energy and a lot of fun.” Eventually, however, the Rangers did manage to pull off two more touchdowns in the third quarter, ending with a score of 34-0, since the extra point kick was blocked in one of those two.

Even though the Warriors were down a few touchdowns, the boys were determined not to leave the field without scoring a touchdown. So in the middle of the fourth and final quarter, Kameron Colvin ‘20 bounded into the end-zone and assured the Warriors, “had a little something to take home,” as he later added. After a touchdown by Colvin ‘20 and an extra point was assured. The Warriors held strong for the rest of the game, with Jace Lyne ‘20 helping to prevent the Rangers from scoring any more touchdowns.

“I was pleasantly surprised with Jack Baddour ‘20, who at the end made good ‘effort’ plays and executed things well,” Coach Wilkerson said while remarking on those players who stood out to him during the game. “You win plays by effort and by execution, and those two things are what we need to see more of.”

At the end of the game, the Warriors left with a score of 34-7 and a lot of knowledge of what to work on in the future. The JV football team will play Hendrickson on Thursday, Oct. 5, at the Warrior Bowl.