By Molly Seales with photos by Ryan Prosperie
On Friday September 25, Riverdale Academy played their first district game of the season at home against the UCA Lions. The boys have been putting in a lot of work and in this game it definitely showed. The offense and defense worked together as a team for the night’s win. The final score was 56-0 in favor of the Rebels.
Senior Witt Almond was two for three passing for 87 yards and 1 touchdown. Senior Parker Almond had 2 receptions for 30 yards. Junior Ty “Bones” Jones had 2 carries for 14 yards. Junior Jake Messenger had 1 carry for 85 yards and 1 reception for 47 yards. Jake had two touchdowns for the night. Senior Paul Messenger is a big asset on offense in any game he plays in, but Friday night he showed the crowd where hard work can lead to. Paul had 14 carries for 185 yards and four touchdowns.
The defense was ready to play as well. Senior Parker Almond had a big interception for the Rebels. The Messenger boys were in on the action as Paul had 1 assist and ½ sack with 2 TFL and Jake had 3 solo tackles, 1 assist, 1 sack (4 TFL) and a fumble recovery. Ty “Bones” Jones had 1 solo tackle and 1 assist with 2 TFL. Freshman Ryder Huddleston was on fire with 2 assists and 3 sacks with 5 TFL. Kaden “Big Kat” Cason had 1 solo tackle, ½ sack (2 TFL) and one forced fumble. Freshman Hayden Hillman had a huge solo tackle for one TFL. Junior Denver Williams had 1 assist, 1 sack (2 TFL) and a fumble recovery that he turned into his first touchdown of the year.
I asked Head Coach Jared Smelser about his thoughts on the game and he said, “We played like a well-oiled machine. We did a lot of things right this week. Our main focus was to get the running game more involved the last two weeks, and we did exactly that. Our running backs are running hard, and we have good leadership. Our defense looks fast and dominant. Coach Edie has them ready to play.” Coach Jensen Spillum has the offensive line fired up and playing hard. “We still have a lot to improve on, but I’m excited that we are improving every day.” The Rebels are inching their way to the top in the 2A PowerPoint Rankings. They are in the #3 spot this week.
This was definitely a good way to start off the district games this season. The Rebels will take the field again on Friday October 2 to take on Tensas. The game will be played at home, so make sure you come out and support them or watch the game at home on the Red River Parish Journal broadcast.