Undefeated 8th Grade “Red” Raiders Pummel Pembroke 33-7

#9 QB Jake Varholak outruns everyone for a 52 yard touchdown

November 1, 2021 by Kevin Riordan

Donning the iconic red jerseys earned by each player in their final season, the 8th grade Raiders put on an inspiring performance by dominating Pembroke 33-7 to complete the regular season undefeated. This is the fourth undefeated season in youth football for this tight knit squad and now all focus is on achieving the goal of repeating as Super Bowl champions in November.

On this Halloween Sunday the Raiders pulled out some tricks on their opening drive with QB Jake Varholak faking the handoff and rolling out showing a pass, but tucked it in and faked out all defenders for a 52 yard touchdown run to put the Raiders up early 6-0. The defense showed a strong front with tackles by Mac Corey, Aedan Milligan then a pass rush by Cavan Nicholas forced a fourth down punt. Behind a veteran offensive line of Cavan Nicholas, Mark Donlan, Mac Corey, Leopold Kuehberger, Andrew Sullivan, Charlie Shape and Cam McKenna, QB Varholak with precision moved the offense down the field with crisp passes to Ian Smith and then threw a dart to tight end JT Reale for a 23 yard touchdown pass. Showing his many athletic talents, Varholak kicked the extra point to put the Raiders ahead 13-0 in the first quarter.

#14 Teddy Anderson hauls in a pass from QB Liam Rogers and carries a few tacklers along the way.

Opening the 2nd quarter Pembroke moved the ball on the ground which resulted in a 29 yard TD run to make things interesting at 13-7. Three plays later the Raiders were in the end zone when RB Ian Smith ran through a hole in the line created by Wyatt Averett and Andrew Sullivan for a 36 yard touchdown to increase the lead to 19-7.

The tandem backfield of Chase Beighley and Drew St. Pierre ripped off a couple of first downs. Then the versatile Ian Smith slashed his way 36 yards for a touchdown run to put the Raiders up 19-7. That’s where the score stood at halftime after Cam McKenna and Cavan Nicholas pressured the Pembroke QB into an errant throw.

A “Red storm” converges on the Pembroke receiver as #29 Chase Beighley, #11 Deacon Evriviades, #34 Jack Daley and #75 Cam McKenna make the gang tackle.

In the third quarter QB Varholak continued to confuse the Pembroke defense by following blocks created by JT Reale, Alec Menuchi, James Pariseault and Nico Cicerone for a 22 yard TD, his second on the day. Ian Smith’s strong leg kicked the extra point for a 25-7 lead. The defense asserted control early in the second half with drive stopping tackles from Drew St Pierre, Jack Germaine and Jack Daley and Wyatt Averett forcing a turnover on downs. On the very next possession Ian Smith on the sweep ran around the blocks of Eli Melendes, Matt Griffin and Andrew Sullivan sprinting 41 yards into the end zone. Following Smith’s successful kicked extra point the Raiders were in a commanding 33-7 lead. Linebacker Aedan Milligan intercepted a Pembroke pass and returned it down to the 15 yard line. In at QB, Liam Rogers completed a pass to Teddy Anderson but the drive stalled on downs in the red zone. With time running out Pembroke threw a pass deep over the middle but safety Teddy Anderson leapt and picked it off for the interception. The rushing attack of Owen Bernard, Jack Daley and Owen Leary sealed the victory and an undefeated regular season. Now it’s onto the playoffs to finish the job they started back in August.


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