Raiders Hold Off Former Champions to stay Undefeated
FOUNTAIN SPRINGS – “We’re for real!” “6-0! 6-0!” were the chants and cheers of Tamaqua fans, players, and cheerleaders as the Blue Raider football team left the field with a 24-10 win over the North Schuylkill Spartans. The loss for the Spartans was their first home defeat since 2008, and it was Tamaqua’s first win over the Spartans since 2007.
In football, its the team that makes the least mistakes that usually wins. That was the story of the game tonight. With time ticking away in the first half and both teams out of time outs, North Schuylkill hoped to head into the break on homecoming night 6-3. The game was starting to look like a tight, defensive battle, but senior tailback Ethan Motsney lost the ball and the Raiders recovered inside the Spartan ten yard line. On the ensuing drive quarterback Nate Edmonds rushed in on a scramble to put Tamaqua up by nine after the missed two point try. This was when Tamaqua started to take over.
The defenses continued to control the game as the third quarter went by scoreless. Tamaqua’s senior nose guard Nick Hollenbach wreaked havoc in the backfield throughout the night. Hollenbach sacked the Spartans’ quarterback, Bobby Grigas, three times and shut down North Schuylkill’s star backfield. The Raider defense held the hometown team to 92 yards rushing. Scoring started to resume in the fourth quarter as Dustin Vandermartin took a double reverse 48 yards for a score but another missed extra point left the score at 18-3. On the next drive, Dalton Nunemacher drove the dagger through the Spartans’ coffin with another touchdown to put his team ahead 24-3 late in the fourth. North Schuylkill tried to make a last ditch comeback when Motsney punched it in very late in the game.
The win puts the undefeated Raiders in the driver’s seat of the Anthracite Football League. Tamaqua improves to a perfect 6-0 with a 4-0 league record. This loss is North Schuylkill’s second of the season as they fall to 4-2 with a 4-2 record in the AFL. The road does not get much easier for either team as the Spartans are home again next week to take on the mighty Red Tornadoes of Mount Carmel Area. Tamaqua will be at home as well to butt heads with the Schuylkill Haven Hurricanes. The Hurricanes were the team that knocked off North Schuylkill first and snapped their 33 regular season game winning streak.
TAHS – 0 – 12 – 0 – 12 -24
NS – 3 – 0 – 0 – 7 – 10
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