Raiders overwhelm Camels in JV matchup

Photos by Timothy Ramsey

Raiders overwhelm Camels in JV matchup
September 06
05:00 2018

It’s always somewhat of a mismatch when you pair a 4A school against a 2A school in athletic competition.  That difference was very evident during last Thursday’s game between Reagan and Atkins, as the Raiders bushwacked their way to a 40-6 victory.

As one might assume, the Raiders were bigger, stronger and faster that the Camels.  Also the Raiders tripled the number of players on the Camel sideline, which set the stage for an uphill battle.  Against all odds, the Camels fought tough throughout, scoring their only points of the game in the final seconds.

“Overall, we were still a little apprehensive but they really showed character in the fourth quarter, especially on that last drive,” said David Hamlin, Camels head coach.  “I tried to tell them when we play 4A schools, a lot of their second team guys would be starters at a lot of smaller schools so we are playing more on our level when those guys come in the game.”

Atkins actually started the game on a very high note, returning the opening kickoff inside the 10 yard line.  The Raiders showed their grit by intercepting a pass at the goal line, preventing any scoring opportunities.

Once the Raiders took possession, Bryson Canty started to get rolling in the running game.  The sophomore back carried the load on that first possession for the Raiders, leading them all the way down the field for a score. 

Not to be outdone, Jon Gullette of Reagan, sprinted 40 yards to the end zone, giving the Raiders an early 12-0 lead.  The Raiders running game was working very well which caused the Camels to committ more to the box.  Reagan used their passing game to open up holes for the backs when they decided to run.

The Raiders defense cannot be overlooked for the job they did last Thursday night, Aug. 30.  The Camels threw everything at them, except the kitchen sink, but the Raider defense would not bend.  By halftime the score had ballooned to 34-0, Reagan.

“We came out a little sluggish but we pulled it together,” said Chris McCoy, assistant coach of the Raiders.  “It was a good effort by all and we were able to put the ball in the end zone.”

“The idea coming in was to ground and pound,” he continued.  “They started adding more to the box so we started passing more, but we really didn’t get clicking there.  We made a couple good plays with special teams, so all in all it was a good overall effort.”

All credit has to be given to the Camels team as a whole.  Even though they were down by five touchdowns at the half, they never quit on Hamlin.  The offense began to move the chains in the third quarter, giving their defense much needed rest.  While they were unable to score in the third, they showed the Raiders the game is not over.

The Camels took possession of the ball with a little over seven minutes left in the game.  They seemed to have one goal and that was to score by any means necessary.  They drove the ball methodically down the field and on fourth down. Alexander Housden connected with Jalante Edwards in the corner of the end zone with 14 seconds left for a touchdown.  That score sent the Camels fans into a frenzy.

“Out of 33 kids, we really only have six or seven kids with real football experience,” said Hamlin.  “We have a lot of first- year kids, but now we just have to teach them to work hard, play hard and let them know to never give up, and that’s what we showed tonight.”

“I don’t look at the score.  I am not worried about 40 to 6. My thing is they made sure they left this field not shut out tonight.  We had some kids tonight that showed they were nervous but now they know they can do it.  When we practice on Monday, the attitudes will be different, and we will have some more bouncing around because now they believe in themselves.”

McCoy stated the Raiders’ coaching staff was not totally happy with the teams’ overall effort Thursday night.  He says they have to get things in order before conference play starts.  McCoy did have high praise for Canty and Gullette, along with the defense.

“Canty had a great off-season in the weight room. He has made the transition to running back and he is a force to deal with,” he said.  “Gullette is a young freshman full of energy and he is very hungry.”

“The defense is tough and in practice and the defensive line is phenomenal.  They are the backbone of who we are.  This team can go as far as they want to go, it’s up to them.”

JV football scoreboard from last Thursday

Atkins (0-2) vs. Reagan (2-0) 40

Carver (0-2) 8 vs. Glenn (1-1) 26

E. Forsyth  (2-1) 38 vs. N. Forsyth  (0-2)   0

Mt. Tabor  (1-1)  34 vs. W. Forsyth (2-0) 40

Parkland  (2-1) 47 vs. Walkertown (1-1) 

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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