The HFL Cougar Youth C-Team took to the road to take on last year’s undefeated Pal-Mac Red Raiders in Palmyra with high hopes and a swagger that makes them a dangerous opponent for any team … Pal-Mac was about to find out just how good they really are.
The Cougars took the opening kickoff and faced adversity early on as Pal-Mac intercepted the first pass of the game by HFL and returned it deep into Cougar territory. The Cougar Defense saved the day by forcing a quick 4-and-out to give the ball right back to the Offense. HFL’s first play from scrimmage was a 26 yard scamper by running back Landon Hammond to put the Cougars into Pal-Mac territory and give the Cougars a fresh set of downs. Two plays later, HFL quarterback Matt Meacham would scramble up the middle when his receiver was covered and go un-touched 38 yards for the first score of the day, putting HFL up 6-0. Drew Angelo would then tack on the extra point to put the Cougars on top 7-0 with only a few minute left in the first quarter. The defense would then step up with big tackles by Cooper Levine to force Pal-Mac’s Offense off the field again after only 4 plays. The Offense would then move the ball again for a first down with a reverse to Angelo for 27 yards with time expiring in the first quarter. The second quarter would start with a stop by the Red Raider Defense to get the ball back to their Offense to attempt to tie the game. The Young HFL Defensive squad would have none of that. Big tackles by Aaron Fasick, Giovanni D’Anna, and Hammond would lead to an eventual fumbled snap and a recovery by Austyn Crego … FIRST DOWN COUGARS! With a fresh set of downs, the Offense went to work grinding out yards and moving the ball down the field. Faced with a 4th and long to keep the drive alive, Angelo took the ball in the backfield and raced down the sideline 28 yards making it 1st and goal at the 3 yard line. The quick handoff up the middle to Hammond on the next play was good for a Cougar touchdown as Landon dragged Pal-Mac tacklers with him over the goal-line a-la Jerome Bettis. Angelo then added his second extra point conversion of the game to put the Cougars up 14-0. With almost no time left in the half, the Red Raiders coughed up the ball on their first play from scrimmage and Crego had his second fumble recovery of the game. HFL was unable to capitalize on the turn-over with only a few seconds left in the half.
The Pal-Mac Offense would receive the second half kick-off and take over at their own 39 yard line. Big tackles by D’Anna, Hammond, Levine and a sack by Crego would give the ball back to the Cougars Offense near midfield, looking to add to their 2 touchdown lead. The ensuing 10 play drive would consume almost all of the remaining 3rd quarter. Two big runs of 18 and 39 yards by Angelo would be capped off by a Meacham QB keeper of 31 yards for his 2nd touchdown of the game to put the Cougars on top 20-0 at the end of the 3rd quarter. The Defense had again pitched a 3 quarter shut-out so it seemed that the Cougars had this one all wrapped up … or so they thought. The Red Raiders mounted a scoring drive that chewed up most of the 4th quarter clock. Kaleb Snyder came up with a big stop on the extra point attempt to keep the Red Raiders behind 20-6. A quick 4-and-out by the HFL Offense was unable to kill the remaining clock, allowing Pal-Mac to add a last second TD on a long run and finish the scoring with the Cougars topping the Red Raiders 20 to 12. The C-Team will put their 3-0 record on the line next Sunday at home against the Marcus Whitman Wildcats.