Varsity Football Loses in Close Battle on Senior Night Against Susquehannock
November 7, 2018
On October 19, the Varsity Football team played the Susquehannock Warriors on senior night, the last home football game of the year. Coming into this game, the Rams were looking to not only win on senior night against their rival, but looking to snap the four game losing streak they were on. After a hard fought battle, the Warriors came out on top 28-24.
Head coach Christopher Grube said that he told the seniors to leave everything out on the field and play every play as if it were the last play they would ever play.
The senior football players honored on senior night included: Johnathan Brown, Wesley Forrester, Ryan Gibney, Noah Hulslander, Noah Kull, Garrett Lowe, Jacob Rose, and Guy Shrewsbury.
Senior linebacker Ryan Gibney said, “It is a hard idea to comprehend, I am really going to miss playing in front of my school and my community,” when asked about his thoughts on playing in his last home game ever as a Ram.
Looking back at the game, Grube felt that his team did not play to their full potential and made critical errors during key points of the game.
The Rams received the opening kickoff, getting the opportunity to score first. The offense did get a first down on the drive, but ended up
punting to Susquehannock later in the drive.
The Warriors’ offense took over, but they did not have much success on their first drive. On a fourth down, the Rams’ defense stopped Susquehannock short of the first down marker resulting in a turnover on downs.
The Rams’ offense marched down the field and got inside the ten yard line before the end of the first quarter, leaving the score tied at zero.
The second quarter started with a Ram’s touchdown, and after the missed extra point, they led 6-0.
About eight minutes later in the second quarter, Susquehannock scored their first touchdown of the game, and took the lead 7-6 after making the extra point.
The Rams fumbled the return of the ensuing kickoff, and Susquehannock recovered, taking the ball back only a few seconds after scoring.
However, the Rams stopped Susquehannock on fourth down with about one and a half minutes to go in the second quarter and got the ball back to the offense.
The final play of the first half was a long pass from senior quarterback Noah Hulslander to senior wide receiver Lowe, but the play did not result in a touchdown.
Susquehannock lead 7-6 at halftime.
The Warriors received the kickoff to start the second half. About five minutes later, with 7:30 left in the third quarter, Susquehannock scored a touchdown to extend their lead to 14-6.
On the next Rams drive, the referees called a fumble on a long run that cut the Rams drive short. It appeared as if the runner’s knee was down before the ball came loose, but nevertheless, Susquehannock got the ball back.
Earlier in the game, referees penalized Gibney for a pass interference, but it was a questionable call. Also, in the first half, the referees called an incomplete pass, but it seemed as if the Rams receiver made the catch.
“Both calls are critical errors by officials along with the third down conversion to Garrett Lowe over the middle, which was called an incomplete pass. I was very frustrated with officials all night due to their lack of knowledge of the game. As a coach, you have to move on, but when it repeatedly happens week after week after week, you lose a sense of control.
“I’m upset with how I conducted myself at times on the sidelines with officials, but at the same time, when I am passionate about the game and my team, wrong calls push me over the edge,” Grube said.
Gibney also commented that it is very rare to have a high school football games with no bad calls, but it did affect the flow of the game, but he also said that the team should have been able to stay on the same page no matter the circumstances.
However, the Rams’ defense played strong and forced the Warriors to punt.
Then, the Rams blocked the punt resulting in great field position for the offense. The very next play resulted in a Rams touchdown, trimming the Susquehannock lead to 14-12 after the Rams failed on the two-point conversion.
A few minutes later, in the third quarter, the Warriors answered the Rams touchdown with a touchdown of their own taking the lead to 21-12, which is where the score stayed until the end of the third quarter.
In the opening minutes of the fourth quarter, the Rams threw an incomplete pass on fourth down, giving the ball back to the Warriors. About five minutes later, the Rams’ defense played great getting the ball back to their offense.
Soon after getting the ball back, the Rams marched down the field and scored a touchdown, but still trailed 21-18 after another missed extra point.
When asked about the extra point woes, Grube said, “We went for a two-point conversion after we scored to make the game 14-12, and we missed it. After that, we continued to kick extra points because statistically, that made the most sense.”
With a little under two minutes left in the game, Susquehannock scored another touchdown to strengthen their lead to 28-18.
On the ensuing kickoff, junior wide receiver Alexander (A.J.) Sharp returned the ball all the way back to midfield.
Then, with about 30 seconds left in the game, the Rams score a touchdown to draw back to a one possession game, trailing 28-24 after missing another extra point.
Still in the game, the Rams attempted an onside kick for a chance to get the ball back and possibly take the lead. However, the
Warriors recovered the onside kick, draining any hopes of a Rams comeback.
The Rams lost 28-24, losing their fifth straight game of the season; their record now at 3-6.
Grube said, “We played down to Susquehannock’s level, and we could not handle the spotlight. We did not play to our potential and that resulted in a loss.”