|HHS Dragons face tough Perkins County team|
|Written by Chris Lee|
Holyoke football team traveled across the state line to face off against Perkins County in Grant, Neb. Friday, Sept. 10.
After quickly falling behind in the first quarter 0-21, the Dragon defense stiffened, only allowing seven more points to the host team. Holyoke however, fell short 8-28 at the final whistle.
Coach Rod Trumper was quick to praise the effort from his Holyoke players. “Their intensity level and confidence was really high,” the coach said.
It would’ve been easy for any team to roll over and die after going down by 21 but the Dragons fought back and played well, according to Trumper.
After missing a few assignments and getting some alignment issues taken care of, the Dragons physically outplayed the bigger team. Perkins County put up a big front line on both sides of the ball.
The coach noted Holyoke’s 18-play drive in the second quarter was something special against the bigger team, and can’t remember of a time in recent years a Holyoke team has sustained such a drive.
HHS running back Broc Pelle gets around the outside on a run in Holyoke’s
Perkins County gets out to quick start
A couple of long passing and running plays by Perkins County allowed them to jump ahead of Holyoke 0-21 by the time the buzzer sounded on the first quarter.
Holyoke didn’t give up as a fired-up team took to the field in the second quarter and moved the ball down the field on a drive that consumed most of the period.
The 18-play drive began at the Plainsman 35-yard line. Holyoke used a couple different looks including a version of the wildcat offense to move the ball down the field.
Running backs Broc Pelle, Brett Cumming and Seth Baker each took turns chewing up the field on the way to the end zone. Quarterback Reid Baumgartner also connected with Cumming on a key fourth-down play.
The Dragons converted three fourth-down conversions on their way to the score. Baker scored from three yards out while Cumming added the two-point conversion.
On the ensuing drive, Holyoke managed to hold off the Plainsmen and get the ball back just before the half ended.
After a long kickoff return by Perkins County, Holyoke again stiffened up and forced the Plainsmen to punt on their first possession of the second half.
A Holyoke turnover gave the ball back to Perkins County and again, the Dragon defense did its job forcing the Plainsmen to turn the ball over on downs deep in Dragon territory.
Holyoke moved the ball to midfield before the drive stalled forcing another Carlos Diaz punt to end the third period.
Perkins County took the ball from the Dragon 26-yard line and moved it down the field on a 15-play scoring drive to increase their lead 8-28.
The Dragons began their final drive of the game with just under six minutes left after Jaydin Goldenstein returned the kickoff to midfield.
After a few nice run and pass plays, the drive stalled after a turnover in the redzone.
Perkins County took over with just over a minute left and ran out the clock.
Holyoke saw three players leave the field with minor injuries. Both Cumming and Austin Killin suffered some cramps while Saul Ramos sprained a thumb.
The loss drops the Dragons to 0-2 on the season as they prepare for a three-game home stand that kicks off Friday, Sept. 17 against St. Francis, Kan.
Coach Trumper said the Indians will be primarily a running team. St. Francis comes in with an 0-2 record. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
Baumgartner finished 5 for 11 for 56 yards and two interceptions. His long pass of 20 yards was to Parker Redfern.
Cumming led rushing efforts going 72 yards on 19 carries. Pelle carried the ball 12 times for 49 yards.
Cumming also hauled in four passes for 36 yards.
Jesus Hermosillo led all tacklers with 15. Killin and Baker finished the game with nine and seven tackles respectively.
Trevor Dalton and Ramos each broke up a pass attempt by Perkins County.
Diaz punted the ball three times with a long of 28 yards.
Pelle and Goldenstein shared kickoff return duties. Pelle returned two kicks with a 60-yard return being his long. Goldenstein also took two kicks. His long was 37 yards.
Other North Central action reported
Other North Central Conference teams played Friday and Saturday, Sept. 10-11. Wiggins lost to Platte Valley 6-14, Yuma beat Hayden 21-14, Wray edged out Burlington 21-14. Highland fell to University 20-27 and Akron beat Rye 27-6.