Coming into tonight's contest with matching records, each team knew what was at stake in this game. And while a loss for either didn't mean they were eliminated from playoff potential, it sure did make the opportunity a lot harder, as both teams have a tough stretch to finish out the regular season.
Homecoming night can be very tough with a big game in front of you. It is very easy for teams to become distracted with all the festivities, games, parades, and the naming of the king and queen. But on this night, Aquin dominated their way to a homecoming win, with a 41-14 win over River Ridge.
Aquin opened up the game receiving the ball, and chewed up yardage on the ground as a steady dose of Ethan Yount and Will Gustafson slashed through the Wildcat secondary. As the Dawgs drove deep into Wildcat territory, it was Gustafson who would strike first from 11 yards out to give Aquin a 6-0 lead with just over 7 minutes left in the 1st quarter after the Patrick Seas point after attempt was no good.
After a quick 3 and out, the Dawgs would go to work again. Once again driving the ball 71 yards in under 5 minutes, this time adding the passing game to the fold with receptions by Andrew Bowman and Cian Curry, followed by runs with Gustafson and Yount, it was Yount who would punch it in from a yard out. After a successful 2 point conversion, the Dawgs were up 14-0 with just over a minute left in the 1st quarter.
To start the 2nd quarter, River Ridge would get the ball and begin to get some success as Jacob Speer found Wyatt Potter on a big 67 yard pass and catch, that would take the Wildcats inside the Bulldog 20 yard line. After a penalty sent the Wildcats backwards, they were facing a 4th down, but a pass to the endzone was incomplete, and the Cats turned the ball over on downs.
On their ensuing drive, the Dawgs once again got big contributions in the run game from Gustafson and Yount. A big 23 yard run by Yount moved the Dawgs into River Ridge territory. A completion to Logan White kept the chains moving again. Finally, Gustafson found some room on a QB keeper up the middle with a 17 yard touchdown run to give the Dawgs a 21-0 lead.
River Ridge would get the pass game going at the end of the 1st half, as he found Kam Kiley and Nick Parr on completions of 23 and 28 yards respectively to keep River Ridge moving. Then Speer found Ben Crist on a 14 yard pass play that cut the deficit to 21-6 as we entered the half.
The second half would get sloppy, as the rain began to fell, and then was put on delay for close to an hour for weather. Once play resumed, both sides were mired by turnovers as Aquin lost 2 fumbles, and River Ridge lost one. Once that was done, Aquin took over, as they put another drive together with the use of Yount and Gustafson once again. This time, they took care of the ball, and chewed up 6 minutes off the clock before Yount would punch in his 2nd score of the game to give the Dawgs a 27-6 lead.
Right away in the 4th quarter Aquin would put the nail in the coffin, as Graysen DeMichele picked off a Speer pass at their own 18 yard line. Yount would take the next carry 82 yards to the house as Aquin went up 34-6. On the very next drive, Speer would throw another interception, but this time Andrew Bowman would take it 52 yards for the score, as Aquin would put the finishing touches on the game to give themselves a 41-7 lead with over 10 minutes left in the game.
River Ridge would score one more time to bring the final score to 41-14. With the loss, River Ridge will need to win out in order to find the playoffs. Aquin can become playoff-eligible with a win in one of their final 2 games.
On the night, Aquin was led by Ethan Yount, who would finish the game with 243 yards on 29 carries with 3 TDs.
Aquin (4-3) vs Stockton (4-3)
River Ridge (3-4) @ Milledgeville (7-0)