The Eagles football team recorded a road win over conference foe Carrollton by the final score of 40-0 on Friday, Oct. 13.
Four total players entered the end zone on the night with Reco Jenkins rushing for two touchdowns, and CJ Reifsteck collecting an interception return for a score on defense to go with a rushing touchdown on offense. Quarterback Lane Siemer and running back Wes Brown each contributed rushing touchdowns on the night.
“We came out, we executed, we just had too many negative things happen that pushed us out,” said Holden football coach David Diener. “Some of it’s uncharacteristic. Some of it’s our kids playing hard, and there are borderline calls. The main thing is we overcame them. There were very few drives, particularly in the second half that, if we had a negative play, we didn’t overcome, and first half, that wasn’t the case. So I was really proud of our kids when we still had those setbacks, how we were able to overcome it second half.”
Interceptions made by Reifsteck and Kale Tryon, along with fumble recoveries made by Sauren Folson, Jacob Andes, and Trent Stout helped the Eagles overcome a couple of turnovers of their own.
Holden also had to overcome the loss of middle linebacker Tucker Kauffman who was lost for the game due to an injury suffered after being tackled while returning the opening kickoff.
Trent Stout and Brody Bockover took over linebacking duties after Kauffman’s exit.
“Tucker is really such a big part of getting us lined up,” said coach Diener. “Not only that, but he makes a lot of tackles for us. We really felt that both Trent and Brody were good options there, if that ever happened. The thing about Stout is he plays downhill fast, and we know that he can create quite a bit of negative plays just because of how fast he plays. So it was good to give him those reps. Tucker’s going to be back, but until then, we feel like we’ve still got a good option there with Trent Stout.”
Following Kauffman’s 11-yard opening kickoff return, the Eagles used carries by Jenkins and Sam Comer to move inside the Carrollton 10-yard line.
Wes Brown carried for a five-yard touchdown with just over two minutes expired off the clock. Lane Inglis tacked on the extra-point kick to give Holden an early 7-0 lead.
Jenkins upped Holden’s lead to 13-0 on a 73-yard burst for a score with 18 seconds remaining in the opening period.
Carrollton quarterback Luke Backes would exit the game with an injury sustained on a sack by Reifsteck early in the second quarter. Reifsteck’s sack would force a punt by the Trojans.
Holden’s following drive stalled, forcing the Eagles to punt, though Carrollton’s punt returner muffed the catch on the kick with the Eagles recovering the loose ball.
Siemer turned the turnover into points on an 11-yard touchdown run on a quarterback keep. Inglis converted the extra-point kick to set the halftime score at 19-0.
Jenkins ran for his second score of the night on a two-yard carry at the 8:29 mark of the third quarter. Inglis kicked to put Holden up 26-0.
Following a Trojan punt on Carrollton’s drive after Jenkins’s score, the Trojans regained the ball by intercepting a Holden pass, but would return the ball to the Eagles on a fumble. Amid a flurry of late game turnovers, Carrollton regained the ball on a Holden fumble in the final seconds of the third quarter. Tryon intercepted a Trojan pass to give possession back to the Eagles less than a minute into the fourth quarter.
On Holden’s drive after the Tryon interception, a pass from Siemer to Cohen Drake kept a drive going for Holden with Reifsteck ending the drive on a 15-yard touchdown carry. Inglis booted the extra-point.
“I was really proud of Lane Siemer’s second half,” said coach Diener. “He’s getting better every week. For him to come through and hit Drake on his pass when we were needing a drive was great. We needed a play over the top. He put a strike to Cohen Drake. To get that part of our offense going and for him to have that success there at the end was great. I’m really proud of him. He did a great job managing the ball in our backfield. That keeps getting faster and better each week with our different fakes and different guys that are coming through getting the ball.”
Reifsteck put an exclamation point on the game by returning an interception 50 yards to the end zone for a score with 5:53 remaining on the clock. Inglis converted his fourth extra-point of the game to set the final score at 40-0 as reserve players trickled into the game in the final minutes.
“We wanted to continue to run the offense that we’ve had,” summarized coach Diener. “We wanted to add a couple wrinkles and get those, but we’re really trying to find our sets that can attack both sides of the formation and get good at those blocking schemes that we’ve got to run with them. They gave us some different looks that threw off some of our off-tackle blocking schemes, but when we wanted to go at them up the middle and be able to hit those plays, those plays worked.
“Then when we came left, Dominick Pedrow on the left side of the line has consistently gotten better, and he had his best game we thought blocking,” noted coach Diener. “When we came his way to set wedges without a tight end, which isn’t an easy thing to do, he won his blocks every time. We were able to make yards when we needed to going left.”
The win over Carrollton marks Holden’s second consecutive conference win after defeating Richmond the week prior. The win over Richmond provided a stepping stone following a loss to Higginsville as the Eagles face the final stretch of the regular season which ends with a home game against Knob Noster.
“Tonight was a must win,” stated coach Diener. “We’ve got to win all three of these games down the stretch, and that was our goal coming out of Higginsville was to go 3-0 going into districts. We were able to get the first two. Now we have a big one coming up against Knob who is a really talented football team. They have the skill kids who can score. We have to be able to play really good defense, and get our guys in spots to make tackles as soon as they get the ball and not let them get going. We’ve got to win the battles up front, and keep us winning at home.”
Jenkins finished with 177 rushing yards to go with his 2 touchdowns. Reifsteck had 39 rushing yards and 1 rushing touchdown, plus the interception return for a score. Wes Brown had 1 carry for 1 touchdown and 5 yards. Sam Comer totaled 36 yards on 4 carries. Brody Bockover had 4 carries for 14 total yards. Owen Doogs had 1 carry for 4 yards.
Siemer had 1 carry for 1 touchdown and 17 total yards. Siemer completed 5 passes for 85 total yards.
Drake had 3 catches for 53 total yards. Reifsteck had 1 catch for 25 yards. Kasyn Tevis had 1 catch for 7 yards.
Inglis converted 4 PAT kicks. Reifsteck punted 1 time for 42 yards.
On defense, Folson and Wes Brown each had 9 tackles. Reifsteck totaled 8 tackles. Reynolds and Andrew Johnston each had 6 tackles. Stout, Jacob Andes, Justin Brown, and Isaac Bell each had 5 tackles. Tryon, Bockover, Jayden Davis-Hacker, and Adne Gamst-Ericksen each had 2 tackles. Tevis, Seth Wright, and Chasen Hall each had 1 tackle.
After the win over Carrollton, the Holden football team held an overall record of 5-3, and stood at 3-1 in MRVC-East play.
The Holden football team hosts Knob Noster for Holden’s Senior Night game this Friday, Oct. 20. Game time is 7 p.m.