Sunday, October 16, 2011
Kearsarge over Windham 28-14 in D-V
Coach Bill Raycraft brought his Windham Jaguars to North Sutton to play the biggest game in their young history. In only their second year coach Raycraft has his program playing the defending D5 state champion Kearsarge Cougars in a game with major play off implications. Coach Raycraft has done a fantastic job getting is team playing at a level way ahead of schedule. Raycraft isn't new to starting a new program. He did the same at John Stark and got them into the playoffs within the first couple years.
Windham had scored over 40 points in 5 out 6 this season.but they were tested by a Kearsarge team who has one of the better defenses in the division. The first quarter was a battle in the trenches. Windham had some success running up the gut with some fullback traps. Windham executes the double wing with running backs Kenny Padin, Scott Priestly, and Kevin Cooney doing most of the damage. Kearsarge's defense was bending put when they had to make a big stop they were up to the challenge. The first big break came when Brad Donnelly intercepted a Joey Lorenz pass putting Kearsarge deep into Windham territory. On a 4th down play Peter Allen threw a ball up for grabs and Parker Hansen jumped and made an acrobatic catch in the end zone to put Kearsarge up 7-0.
It had rained prior to the game and continued into the first quarter. The field was slick and so was the ball. Kearsarge seemed to have control of the game but they continued to shoot themselves in the foot with several fumbles in the first half. Windham capitalized on a Kearsarge fumble and was able to score from 24 yards out to tie up the game at 7-7. Kearsarge answers with a Eric Hauck 2nd quarter run putting Kearsarge up 14-7 at half.
Kearsarge has an all junior backfield that coach Mathews uses all of them in a very balanced attack. Jacob Jones 15 rushes for 81 yards and a touchdown, Eric Hauck 10 rushes for 87 yards and a touchdown, Ollie Gallo 14 rushes for 130 yards and a touchdown. Matthews also sneaks elite sprinter Parker Hansen into the backfield from his wide out position. Hansen had the one touchdown catch and 41 yards running the ball. The four of them make up Kearsarge's version of the 4 horseman. This makes the Cougars very difficult to prepare for you can't key on any one player.
The second half went a lot like the 1st half. Windham was able to move the ball put Kearsarge defense made the big stops when they had to. With Kearsarge up 20-7 Windham quarterback Joey Lorenz was able to find a receiver behind the Kearsarge defense for a long touchdown pass to close the score to 20-14 keeping Windham within striking distance. Ollie Gallo put the game out of reach in the fourth quarter with a 10 yard run to pay dirt. Kearsarge converts a 2 pt. conversion to put the game out of reach at 28-14.
Coach Matthews has to be happy with the win because it puts them in good position for a home play off game. He can't be happy with all the fumbles and penalties. The Cougars are a well balanced team that is very capable of matching up with Division favorite Saint Thomas. They play each other in 2 weeks and if Kearsarge can eliminate the mistakes you have the potential for game like last years epic battle. I can't wait for that game it should be fun!
Windham you are definitely a team that nobody wants to play. You are going to make the play offs in your second year. Your best football has yet to be played. No doubt you will be one of the preseason favorites next year.