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By Andi Belt
The North Shelby Raiders traveled to Schuyler County on Friday, September 15, 2023 for a very physical road game. The Raiders were unable to keep up with the high-powered Schuyler offense and were defeated 60-14.
The game started out a little different than previous games so far this year. The team was without quarterback, Jade Daniel, and running back, Amos Fredrikson. Determined to not let this slow them down, the Raiders started out with a bang on the opening drive. A long pass from freshman, Gannon Bowen to Gabe Orr set the offense up on the four-yard line. A jet sweep play to Cole Browning moved the Raiders to the one-yard line. A powerful run by Browning put the first points of the night on the board. Bowen took the ball in for the two-point conversion and the Raiders led 8-0.
Schuyler County quickly retaliated on their own opening drive. The Rams’ quarterback threw a deep pass to his receiver downfield to set up first and goal. The Rams had a powerful run of their own to bring the ball to the Raider one-yard line. The Rams got their first touchdown and added the two-point conversion, tying the game 8-8.
The kickoff from the Rams was returned by Drake Prange for good yardage, until it was fumbled near mid field. Orr was quickly on the ball, and returned it for another Raider touchdown. A group of Rams quickly shut down the two-point attempt and the Raiders were up 14-8.
A series of quick pass routes brought the Rams into Raider territory once again. The Schuyler County running back powered in for their second touchdown, and good play action resulted in another successful two-point. The Rams took the lead 16-14.
North Shelby made their way down the field, being patient and moving into Ram territory. The Raiders possession ended with an interception at the goal line which was run back 40 yards to set up the Schuyler offense. The Rams punched through the Raider line to get another touchdown, but an interception by Bowen shut down the 2 point attempt. The Rams extended their lead 22-14.
The Raider offense struggled once again, but a reception by Oren Vansksike with plenty of yards after the catch gave the Raiders some momentum. However a defensive stop, this time a fumble recovery, gave Schuyler the ball back. North Shelby fought back with a big stop of its own on the next drive. A pick by Orr gave the Raiders the ball back one more time before halftime. North Shelby was unable to get the yards they needed, as Schuyler was given one last chance before halftime. The Rams pushed their way to the one-yard line and were looking to score. Two big stops by TJ Belt and Oren Vanskike pushed the Rams back, and the teams headed to the locker room with Schuyler ahead 22-14.
Schuyler County came out on fire in the second half with another Ram touchdown, and the score was now 28-14.
Unable to answer, North Shelby gave the ball back to the Rams. Schuyler weaved through the Raider defense for another touchdown, and a quick pass route on the 2 point extended the lead 38-14.
The Raiders offense could not keep up and once again Schuyler capitalized on its next possession. Their running back ran to the endzone for a Rams touchdown, but Sam Schwanke kept them from getting the extra two points. The Rams pulled away 44-14.
The Raiders started off the fourth quarter with a fumble, and the Rams were set up to score again. Schuyer took one play this time to get the next six points, and a pass to the corner of the endzone gave them two more points, increasing the Schuyler County lead to 48-14.
The Raiders made some good plays on the offensive side but were unable to get anywhere with it. Schuyler got the ball, and scored another touchdown. The North Shelby defensive line held and stopped the two-point conversion. Schuyler County led by 40 with a score of 54-14.
The Schuyler County defense showed up, once again, to get the ball back and score on their last drive of the game. The Rams snuck in for their last touchdown, but the Raiders defense held on the two-point conversion. The final score was 60-14.
The Raiders will look to rally back when it hosts Knox County on Friday, September 22, 2023 for their homecoming game, with kickoff set for 7 p.m.