On a warm, wet October evening, two of the most high flying offenses had to double check their game plan and think about keeping the ball on the ground. The wet conditions made for a battle between the Aquin Bulldogs and the River Ridge Wildcats. Aquin was 5-1 sitting tied at the top of the Upstate division, and River Ridge was 2-4.
The entire first half of the game wasn’t looking good for either team, but especially the favorites, Aquin. The Bulldogs started all of their drives but one on the Wildcat side of the field, yet were only able to convert on one touchdown. That touchdown coming on their second drive of the game. The long ball was tossed from Jonah Diemer to Cole Luedeking for a 34 yard touchdown. Zac Cummins put the PAT through the uprights and the Bulldogs went up 7-0 with 4:17 left in the first quarter.
The Wildcat offense struggled as well tonight, putting up no points in the first half. However, that doesn’t mean that they didn’t score. The Wildcats punted the ball away, and on its way down, the ball caught the leg of an Aquin player, and Nick Parr from River Ridge picked up the ball and took off towards the end zone. After a 5 minute discussion between coaches and referees, the touchdown would stand, making the score 7-6 in favor of Aquin after a failed 2 point conversion with 2:27 remaining in the first half. This score would hold true to halftime.
The second half was a whole different ball game. Aquin began cashing in on their long balls to Zac Cummins and Bryce Carlson. Cole Luedeking and Cole Stykel were making the right cuts and holes were being made. The Bulldogs began to roll, and roll fast. On their first drive of the second half, the Bulldogs showed their big play ability when Jonah Diemer launched a 35-yard bomb to Zac Cummins, who came down with the ball on the 5 yard line, and he walked into the end zone from there. A failed PAT would put the Bulldogs up 13-6 with 10:35 left in the 3rd quarter.
The Bulldogs would force a fumble on the next Wildcat possession, and with good field position and the arm and legs of Diemer, the Bulldogs would strike again. Diemer rumbled his way to a short touchdown run, showing that he can do it through the air and on the ground. This would put Aquin up 20-6 with 8:29 remaining in the 3rd quarter.
After another quick 3 and out, the Wildcats kicked a poor punt, that would net 0 yards, giving Aquin the ball on the Wildcat 19 yard line. The Wildcat defense would force Aquin to go for it on 4th down, but after scrambling around a bit, Diemer was able to find Cummins yet again for another touchdown. This would bring the score to 27-6 with 4:17 left in the 3rd quarter.
After forcing another 3 and out, and another short punt, Aquin would start their next drive in good field position. That field position was made much better on yet another long distant Diemer to Cummins hook up moving the ball down to the 3 yard line where Bryce Carlson would punch in a 3 yard run. The Carlson touchdown brought the score to 33-6 with 24 seconds left in the 3rd quarter.
After this touchdown, the Wildcats would be able to put some points on the board. A big catch by Kameron Kiley would set himself up to make another long play for 6 points. This drive quarterback Jacob Speer was able to set up in the pocket and really show his arm strength and accuracy. He zipped the ball around and all the way down the field. The touchdown would take the score to 33-14 with 10:46 left in the 4th quarter.
Aquin would answer right back on their next drive though. After Cole Luedeking ripped off a 36 yard run, the Bulldogs seemed to be rolling. Shortly after that long run, Cole Stykel would take the ball for a 15 yard touchdown, posting Aquin’s final points for the night moving the score to 40-14 with 7:56 left in the game.
On the following drive, the Wildcats were also able to put some numbers up after a string of long passing plays from Jacob Speer. He would complete consecutive 15, 15, and 35 yard passes, the 35 yard pass being a touchdown to his number one target, Drew Kloss. This would bring us to the final score for the game, Aquin 40, River Ridge 20.
Aquin (6-1) @ Stockton (5-2) | River Ridge (2-5) vs. Milledgeville (6-1)