Straughn rolls over Red Level in preseason match

Published 12:05 am Saturday, August 20, 2016

Straughn's defense swarms John Lee.

Straughn’s defense swarms John Lee.

It was may have only been a preseason game, but the Straughn Tigers looked like they were in mid-season form as they rolled to a 40-8 victory over Red Level Friday night at Straughn’s Tigers Stadium.

“It was like I said earlier in the week, we just wanted to go out there and compete,” Straughn head coach Chris Wilson said. “I thought we did that tonight, and I felt like we executed well.”

Straughn got things started strong on their opening possession with a 10-play, 70-yard drive that was capped off by a touchdown from Dalton James.

James scored on a 25-yard rush around the end to put Straughn on top early.

The extra point put Straughn up 7-0 with seven minutes left in the opening quarter.

Straughn’s defense forced a punt on Red Level’s first series, and three plays later the home Tigers found pay dirt.

Senior quarterback Brock Hammett made a perfect read on option as he tucked the ball and skirted around the left edge for a 15-yard touchdown run.

Brock Hammett explodes up the sideline on a 77-yard gain.

Brock Hammett explodes up the sideline on a 77-yard gain.

Red Level then put together their best drive of the game and cut Straughn’s lead down to six.

Senior running back John Lee used his power and speed to pick up a hard-fought first down a few plays into the series.

Red Level quarterback Cale Mancill connected with Ontaryo Nearor for a 13-yard tight end dump to give Red Level another first down.

The biggest gain of the night for Red Level came a few plays later when Colten Dorman busted loose for a 31-yard rush to set Red Level up inside the 10-yard line.

Back-to-back runs from Lee put Red Level on the 2-yard line.

John Lee blows through an arm tackle by a Straughn defender.

John Lee blows through an arm tackle by a Straughn defender.

Mancill sealed the drive with a fake handoff to Lee and then took the ball up around the edge for a touchdown.

Mancill added the two-point conversion as Straughn led 13-8 with under a minute left in the opening period.

Red Level’s defense stepped up on the next series and forced a punt from Straughn.

Lee picked up big first down for Red Level on the second play of the series when he busted through some arm tackles and fought his way for a 13-yard pick up.

Mancill then connected with Joe Arnold for a 30-yard pick up.

Straughn then got a huge sack from Cade Courson who ripped through the Red Level offensive line, and then brought Mancill down to the grass.

The sack shifted what momentum Red Level had right onto the Straughn sideline.

On the first play of the next series, Hammett went 77 yards on an option keeper to set Straughn up with a first-and-goal from the 7-yard line.

Hammett connected with Triston Cobb on the next play for a 7-yard touchdown pass and catch.

Straughn continued to pick up the momentum as they forced Red Level to a three-and-out on the following series.

Jacob Gomillion had a big sack during the series for Straughn.

After forcing the punt, Straughn’s offense went right back to work putting points on the board.

Hammett hit Corey Matrullo for a 33-yard pick up to start the series, and then capped off the drive with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Cobb to put Straughn on top 25-8 with 3:36 left in the first half.

Straughn added another score just before halftime when Hammett connected with Keaun Samuel on a fade to the corner of the end zone.

Keaun Samuel goes up for a touchdown catch.

Keaun Samuel goes up for a touchdown catch.

Straughn held 32-8 lead as the varsity teams took the rest of the night off and let the junior high players go in the second half.

Straughn’s Caleb Bennett scored the lone touchdown of the second half on an 8-yard run.

“Every one has a plan until they get hit in the mouth,” Red Level head coach James Wise said. “With that said, I was very proud of the way the junior high kids played. I was proud of the varsity guys at times, but at times we weren’t playing well. This was a good game to kickoff the year. I was proud of all my coaches and all of the fans that showed up. Credit goes to Straughn. They are a well-coached team that doesn’t make a lot of mistakes.”

Wilson said he was proud of his players as well.

“I thought our quarterbacks made good decisions and passes,” Wilson said. “We were pleased with what we saw from the whole team. I’m sure when we go back and watch the film we will be a little less pleased.”