Riverside Christian Academy’s football program suffered a varsity and a middle school loss last week.
The Knights’ varsity team fell to the Lighthouse Christian School Lions on Friday night, 50-20; the Knights’ middle school team lost a close one to the Franklin Christian Academy Falcons on Saturday afternoon, 38-30.
“Both opponents were very polished teams that took advantage of our mistakes. We also had opportunities to turn the games around that we didn’t take advantage of,” said RCA’s Head Coach Travis Creasy. “When you play teams like that you find out how you can get better, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
In the Knights’ varsity game on Friday night, LCS scored first on a touchdown run and a successful two-point conversion to make the score 8-0 with 11:28 left in the first quarter.
The Knights got the ball and methodically drove down the field, finishing the drive with a five-yard touchdown run by senior Austin Wooten. Quarterback Josh Brooks ran the ball in the end zone for the two-point conversion for a tied 8-8 score with 6:12 left in the first quarter.
The LCS Lions would score three more touchdowns and two more two-point conversions before the end of the first quarter for a score of LCS, 30, RCA, 8.
The Knights saw the end zone again in the second quarter on a one-yard touchdown run by sophomore Nathan Moose. The two-point conversion was no good for a 14-30 score.
The Lions scored two passing touchdowns, one at the end of the first half and one at the beginning of the second half, bringing the Lions’ lead over the Knights to 28.
Seth Finch scored the last points of the night for RCA on a 30-yard touchdown pass from Josh Mills. The two-point conversion attempt was no good for a score of RCA, 20, to LCS, 42.
LCS scored the final points of the game on a touchdown pass and two-point conversion with less than ten minutes left in the fourth quarter. The final score was 50-20.
“We didn’t tackle well, and we didn’t take advantage of opportunities, which cost us the game,” said Creasy. “We’ve got to work on our tackling in the open field this week during practice to improve on the weakness we showed.”
The Knights spread the ball out on the ground with six different players running the ball throughout the course of the game and in the air with five different players making catches. The team had a total of 184 rushing yards and 171 passing yards.
Nathan Moose led the Knights in rushing with eight carries for 64 yards, three first down conversions and a touchdown. Quarterbacks Josh Brooks and Josh Mills each contributed over 30 yards to the Knights rushing total, and Austin Wooten contributed 23 rushing yards and a touchdown.
Josh Brooks played at the quarterback position until an injury prevented him from being able to grip the ball with his throwing hand. Brooks completed four of seven passes for a total of 65 yards. Josh Mills took over at quarterback after the injury to Brooks’ hand, and contributed 106 passing yards and one touchdown.
Seth Finch led the Knights in receiving with seven catches for 82 yards and one touchdown. Mason Forchetti had two catches for 55 yards, and Ryan Eldridge had two catches for 23 yards.
“It’s great to have depth at running back, and we have an offensive line that has really helped us to be able to run the ball successfully. I also appreciate Josh Mills and his ability to come in at the quarterback position and give us a chance in a tough situation,” said Creasy.
On the defensive side of the ball, Seth Finch led the Knights in stats with three tackles and two assists. Austin Wooten also had three tackles, Zach McCormick brought down two of the Lions players, Josh Mills defended a pass and had two tackles and Ryan Eldridge and Josh Brooks each had one interception.
“Our game this coming Friday night is against Grace Christian Academy from Franklin. They are a young team, but they’ve played teams tough already this season. We’re excited to be back at home on Friday and get back to playing physical team football,” said Creasy.
The Knights’ middle school football team played the FCA Falcons on Saturday in their first eight-man football game.
“I was proud of the way our middle school guys played hard through adversity. They never quit and played through the end. The older guys on the team really accepted the challenge of the eight-man format and set the tone for the team. The whole team played physically, made tackles and blocked well,” said Creasy.
The Knights’ physical run game, led by Jacob Anderson and Logan Crabtree, set up some deep passes from Eli Wright to Luke Eakes and Adam Hamilton.
Creasy praised eighth-grader Adam Hamilton for playing well in all phases of the game, making catches, blocking well down field and making big tackles on defense.
RCA’s middle school football team will face off against Lighthouse Christian School at home next Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. The Knights’ varsity team will play Grace Christian Academy on Friday night at home with kickoff at 7 p.m. RCA would like to invite the community to the attend the game and the Field House Dedication Ceremony beginning at 6 p.m.