Talk about a physical game. Roosevelt and Garfield delivered big hit after big hit in a battle that was ultimately won between the tackles. Roosevelt was just a little bigger, a little stronger and ran north-to-south a little better and ultimately it showed up in the final score 17-7.
If you need to catch up on what happened, we have a game recap for your reading pleasure.
The short: Roosevelt ran the ball a bit better and made less mistakes. And the mistakes were glaring. The Bulldogs turned the ball over five times, including on the second play of the game from scrimmage. Roosevelt did turn the ball over twice — one coming on a muffed snap on 4th and 2 from the Garfield 10 on its first drive — but the Roughriders forced the biggest turnover of the night on the first play of the fourth quarter.
That play, would be Ian Buie strip-sack, which popped the ball straight in the air and allowed Jackson Reavis to easily scamper into the end zone, untouched.
“It was almost lucky, but my left defensive tackle came and he got the sack,” Reavis said. “It was just a situation where the ball popped out and right in my hands, and I caught it and ran as fast as I could into the end zone.”
Was he surprised the ball found its way into his hands?
“Yeah, it was such a quick thing to happen,” he said.
The play, which gave Roosevelt a 17-7 lead really took the air out of Garfield’s sails. Even though there was most of a quarter left to play, it didn’t feel like the Bulldogs would come back.
– Roosevelt’s been pretty banged up in the backfield, and it had to turn to a lineman in the second half. Grant McLaughlin actually ran the ball well, scoring the go-ahead touchdown from six yards out.
“Took a few handoffs, I had to get used to it,” McLaughlin said.
“It’s like a lineman’s dream, right?” Roosevelt coach Matt Nelsen said. “I love our linemen, our linemen are such great kids and they’re great competitors and they do such a great job with what we ask of them. The way we run the ball, the linemen do all the work and get none of the credit. We’ve had running backs be first team, we had a running back last year that was first team all-league in KingCo. They just don’t get enough credit. It was really awesome to see Grant. We called on him and he’s a great player.”
– Alex Mackenzie took a vicious — very legal, though — pursuing a play down the sideline in the first half when he was leveled by a Garfield player. Mackenzie left during halftime in an ambulance and Nelsen said it was thought to be a dislocated left elbow.