Raiders stay undefeated against Bobcats

Raiders stay undefeated against Bobcats
October 17
14:10 2019

The Reagan Raiders JV football team headed into the game against Glenn with a 5-0 record. The Raiders should have felt supremely confident coming into the game, but their starting quarterback Kam Hill sustained a broken collarbone the week prior, so the coaching staff only had a few days to prepare backup Jalill Rogers for duty.

The loss of Hill for the Raiders was especially impactful, considering the sophomore had thrown for 31 touchdowns in only 5 games. For this game, the Raiders leaned on their defense to lead the way to a 35-12 victory.

“We had a lot of plays in this offense prior to this game, because we had a special guy at quarterback,” said Chris McCoy, Reagan JV head coach. “Shockingly, he went down unexpectedly, so I had to try and find an answer to calm down the offense.”

The ball literally bounced the Raiders way early on, as they were blessed to recover Glenn fumbles on three consecutive possessions to start the game. That really took the pressure off Reagan. They converted the first fumble into a touchdown pass from Rogers to Montrell Jones. Credit goes to the Bobcat defense for not surrendering any point on the subsequent fumbles to only trail 7-0 after the first quarter.

Early in the second quarter, Reagan struck again when Rogers threw his second touchdown pass of the evening, giving the Raiders a 14-0 lead. Glenn was having trouble completing drives, but made a big play in special teams by blocking a punt late in the second quarter that was returned for a touchdown by Donvon Cole. 

 The Bobcats had to feel good going into the half only down 14-6, after turning the ball over four times. Unfortunately, the Raider offense would eventually wear down the Bobcat defense in the second half.

“It’s a pride thing and when your leader goes down it’s hard for everyone to get focused,” said McCoy. “That’s what we struggled with in the first half. We skimmed the playbook down to about six plays and we tried to get good at those plays.”

Glenn continued to shoot themselves in the foot coming out of the half by turning the ball over yet again. The Raiders capitalized on the short field a few plays later when Rogers ran it in from 41 yards out on a designed quarterback run. The Raiders did not take their foot off the gas. On their next possession, Rogers hit Zion Fant on a screen pass that went for a 66-yard touchdown.

With a big lead, the Raiders put in many of their back-up players. The Bobcats took advantage and scored a touchdown early on the fourth quarter to make the score 35-12, which concluded the scoring for the game. The score was a bit misleading, as the Glenn defense played well, but spent too much time on the field.

“I think my team is doing swell, absolutely swell,” said Julius Reese. “We have limited time during the week for practice, because we are always dealing with varsity, but I am proud of my boys. They keep fighting and going hard and giving me that winning effort, that’s all I ask for.
“Our defense always fights hard. That is just a tradition here with the Glenn Bobcats. The JV practices with the varsity defense a lot, so they get that same fire and have that same dog in them.”

McCoy said for his team to put up 35 points against a quality team like Glenn was a complete team effort. He was proud of the way his defense and special teams played, while also crediting the offensive line for making his offense go.

The early turnovers by Glenn really eased the pressure for the first-time starter Rogers, said McCoy. With only three days to get him prepared, McCoy was elated to have his defense show up for him the way they did.

“With the defense giving us the ball where we got it, it gave us the chance to work with a short field, which anytime you have a new quarterback that has never played the position at the high school level, is a good thing,” said McCoy. “I told the young man that I am not asking him to save the world, but to just do what he knows what to do and he did that and led our team to a victory and I could not be more proud of him.”

Reese feels his team really hurt themselves by turning the ball over five times in the game, which led to some missed opportunities to put more points on the board. Moving forward he will focus on eliminating the mistakes in practice to produce a better product on the field.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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