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Warriors Fall 70-24 to Blujays

by Julian Aramendi

September 28, 2020

The Southern Cloud football team showed remarkable courage in its most recent contest.  Going into last Friday's game against St. John's/Tipton, the Warriors suited up nine players; the Blujays dressed 20.  In almost every category the Blujays enjoyed substantial advantages. 

The Warriors were more than equal in heart, however.  Down 46-0 in the second quarter, Southern Cloud scored twice before halftime.  Fullback Ethan Kennedy broke free behind the wedge blocking of Levi Cool, Matt Paillet, Evan Custer, Nick Millikan, and Bryson Schmidt on touchdown runs of 35 and 41 yards.  Kennedy and tailback Cody MacLean converted the subsequent two-pointers.  MacLean opened the second-half scoring on a 55-yard run off-tackle; the line caved in the Blujays front to clear the way for Kennedy to score the followup two.  Against a team with a huge numbers advantage and a big edge in talent the Warriors fought back to a 46-24 tally.  On the ensuing St. John's possession the Warriors forced a punt; a bad snap forced the punter to improvise, but Custer wrestled him down for a loss.  Down to eight healthy players after Paillet exited with an ankle injury (forcing Millikan to move to center and Gus Rice to come off the bench to take over Millikan's tackle spots), the Warriors managed to work their way into the red zone before turning the ball over on a fumble.  Near the end of the fourth quarter Millikan exited the contest; with only seven players and down 62-24, the Warriors refused to surrender.  With fourth-string center Cool taking over for Millikan and Dante Peterson lining up at tight end, Southern Cloud went to work on offense.  They faced eight defenders, all starters on the Blujay varsity.  Kennedy charged up the middle on another wedge to gain 30 yards.  Three more runs gained another first down to the Blujay 15.  The seven Warriors nearly converted still another fourth down against all odds.  Despite having seen approximately 1200 high school football games on film in the last 10 years, your humble scribe must confess that he has never seen a display of guts and moxie quite like this. 

The Blujays shut the game off several plays later. 

MacLean gained 61 yards on 15 carries and scored a touchdown; he was 2 of 7 through the air for 16 yards.  Kennedy lugged the leather 21 times for 147 yards and two scores; he passed twice, once to a teammate for 2 yards and once to an opponent.  MacLean, Schmidt, and Millikan caught a pass each for 2, 11, and 5 yards, respectively.  Tackles/assists were as follow: MacLean (7/2), Custer (6/5), Millikan (5/1), Peterson (4/6), Schmidt (3/4), Kennedy (3/3), Rice (2/2), Cool (2/1), and Paillet (0/2).  Millikan forced a fumble; Kennedy recovered a fumble; Custer and Cool each logged a tackle for loss; MacLean blocked a PAT attempt. 


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