The Marcus Whitman Wildcats had only lost one game all season, and they came to the HFL Stadium on a picture-perfect Sunday afternoon to try to keep that winning record in-tact. The Wildcats won the toss and elected to receive the opening kick-off from HFL. Charlie Kirby, Brody Young, and Carson Joint denied the Marcus Whitman squad a first down on their initial possession, and HFL took over on downs at their own 42 yard line. A 16 yard run by Zac Meacham, two consecutive completed passes to Nolan Smith and Carson joint for a total of 19 yards, and HFL found themselves deep in Marcus Whitman territory with a first and goal at the 6. Unable to punch it in on the first 3 tries, a 13 yard run to the wide side of the field by Meacham resulted in a diving touchdown as he launched over the pylon following a big hit by the Marcus Whitman defender. Nolan smith then caught the extra point throw by Young in the end-zone to put HFL up early 7 to 0. HFL’s lead would be short-lived as the Wildcats took only one play after the kick-off to tie the score at 7 apiece. The Marcus Whitman kicker then pinned the Cougars deep in their own territory with 1st and 10 at the Cougar 19. The HFL Offense could not get into the rhythm that netted them 7 points on the first drive and eventually surrendered the football to Marcus Whitman on their own 15 yard line. It only took two plays for the Wildcats to punch it in and miss the extra point to take a quick 13 to 7 lead as the first quarter came to an end. To start the 2nd quarter of play, the visiting Wildcats made the big mistake of kicking it deep to Joey Rogers who electrified the home crowd with a fantastic 71 yard kick-off return for a Cougar touchdown! The score was now dead-locked at 13 … but unfortunately … not for long. On the very next kick-off by the Cougars, the Marcus Whitman returner answered the HFL score with his own 67 yard return for a touchdown. Troy Mooney denied the extra point by stripping the ball from the Wildcat runner before he crossed the goal-line … HFL 13 , Marcus Whitman 19. Despite big tackles on Defense by Jack Harvey, James Killenbec, Smith, Kirby and Rogers … and a big 31 yard run by Meacham on Offense, the HFL squad went into halftime down to a tough Marcus Whitman ball-team 26 to 13.
The second half would not be kind to the young Cougar team as the visiting Wildcats would score again on their opening drive. The Cougars fought back, but were unable to move the ball very effectively against the stingy Marcus Whitman Defense. HFL did manage to push the ball into Wildcat territory on a pair of tough “smash-mouth” runs up the middle by Hayden Meehan, but the drive eventually stalled. The Youth Cougars did not give up however, and the Defense stepped up a number of times in the second half to deny any more scoring by the Wildcats. Joint, Mooney, Conlan Rorick and Colton Miller handed the visitors their first 4-and-out of the second half, while a flurry of consecutive tackles by Meacham and a strip and recovery by Killenbec put the brakes on the final Marcus Whitman drive of the day. Although the final score was Marcus Whitman 32, HFL 13, the boys fought hard till the very end and played a tough 4 quarters of football. The B-Team will try to get back on the winning track next weekend as they start a 2 week road trip by traveling to Midlakes High School to take on the Jr. Eagles.