|Wray downs Holyoke for league title, Dragons still make playoffs|
|Written by Chris Lee|
A lot was riding on last Friday’s football game in Wray. Holyoke was looking for an upset win over the Eagles to claim the league title and lock up a playoff spot.
After playing right with Wray for three quarters, the Eagles pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 27-6 win.
“We weren’t attacking,” coach John Zilla said. “We were a little scared. I don’t know what it was.”
The loss meant Holyoke’s chance at the playoffs would be determined by a coaches vote Sunday, Oct. 28.
Following the league meeting Sunday, Zilla left knowing the Dragons would live to see at least one more game.
They are scheduled to travel to Bailey Saturday, Nov. 3 to face Platte Canyon in the first round of the Class 1A football playoffs. Kick off is slated for 1 p.m.
“We ended up the 12th seed against Platte Canyon which I’m very happy for,” the coach said. “I’m happy for the boys. They get to play a playoff game and see what it’s like. I hope they go up there and show them that Holyoke is for real.”
Wray proves too much late in the game
Holyoke entered last Friday’s game knowing they would need to shut down Wray’s Cade Reinick if they wanted to walk away with a win.
After three quarters of play, Wray held a slim 12-6 lead over Holyoke. The Eagles managed to slow the Dragons’ rushing attack. Zilla said the Eagles threw a lot of blitzes at them which messed up the line and made it hard for them to account for everything.
In the final quarter, Wray punched in two more touchdowns, a two-point conversion and PAT to earn the 27-6 win.
The Eagles were on the board first in the opening period after a nine-yard rushing touchdown from Reinick.
Holyoke’s only score of the game came with 8:18 left in the second quarter. The Dragons dug out a trick play and scored when Bradley Cumming hit a wide open Logan Tharp for a 54-yard halfback touchdown pass. The two-point conversion attempt was no good, but the Dragons had managed to tie the game at six.
After the teams traded a few possessions, Wray answered the score when Reinick broke loose for a 29-yard touchdown run with 1:18 left before the half. Holyoke’s Luke Stewart blocked the PAT.
Bradley Cumming returned the ensuing kickoff to Holyoke’s 47 yard line giving the Dragons a little bit of hope to punch in another score before half. The drive ended after Holyoke moved the ball inside Wray territory and time ran out on the half. After some confusion, the referees officially ended the second quarter. Coach Zilla was visibly frustrated as the teams headed into the locker rooms.
Wray moved the ball deep into Dragon territory to open the second half, but Bradley Cumming ended any hopes of scoring after picking off Reinick at Holyoke’s 10 yard line.
The teams then traded three and outs to finish out the third period of play.
Wray began at midfield on their next drive and moved down to the 35 yard line. From there, Reinick connected with Kyler Churchwell for a touchdown pass. The two-point conversion was good, giving the Eagles a 20-6 advantage.
Wray went on to score one more time with 42 seconds remaining in the game. They added the PAT, giving them the 27-6 victory.
Dragons in playoffs
No. 12 Holyoke (4-5) will travel to Bailey to face No. 5 Platte Canyon (9-0) Saturday afternoon.
“The boys seem real excited,” Zilla said. “I just hope we go up there and have a good showing for Holyoke.”
He noted they will try to get the kids motivated throughout the week of practice. “Try to get them to understand we need to get back to our basic running, blocking and tackling and we’ll be fine.” He also added the defensive front four and linebackers will need to play a good game as well.
Wray managed to hold Holyoke’s rushing attack at bay and limited the Dragons to only 74 yards on the ground. Brett Cumming led the attack with 67 yards on 14 carries. Others carrying the ball were TJ Gertner, Bradley Cumming and Dylan Kotch.
Gertner completed two passes for 12 yards and Bradley Cumming completed one for 54 yards.
Logan Tharp led receiving efforts with one catch for 54 yards and the score. Brett and Bradley Cumming each also hauled in a pass.
Defensively, Jesus Hermosillo led the team with 17 tackles. Tharp had 16 and Alfredo Santos had 12. Tharp also recorded one sack.
Bradley Cumming had one interception and returned it six yards. Luke Stewart recorded one PAT block.
Other North Central action reported
Other North Central Conference teams played last week. Wiggins beat Cornerstone Christian Academy 40-6, Yuma beat Las Animas 13-6 and Resurrection Christian beat Highland 52-14.
Holyoke Enterprise November 1, 2012