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Redhawks edge out East Buc 7-6

September 27, 2018
CJ Eilers - Editor ( , Traer Star-Clipper

The North Tama Redhawks continued district play with a trip to East Buchanan on Friday, Sept. 21 for a defensive battle that saw the Redhawks squeak by for a close win against a team prepared for the run.

"We felt they would be tough competition at the beginning of the year and one of the favorites in our district," McDermott said. "They run the ball well and have good size defensively we had to be ready for."

North Tama quickly found themselves at odds with the Buccaneer defense as the run game that had served the Redhawks so well all season couldn't find a seam or gap to run through. First downs proved to be difficult and time of possession lessened for North Tama. The Redhawks looked to their quarterback, Hale Hulme for their first and only touchdown of the game on a one-yard run and kick to go up 7-0 with eight minutes left in the half.

Article Photos

Parker Hulme with a tackle against Hudson on Friday, Sept. 21. Hulme would record a tackle against East Buc a week later.

"We did not execute on offense as well as our previous games and they set their defense to stop our run," McDermott said. "They basically dared us to throw the ball by giving us trouble on the line and we have to give East Buchanan credit for that. Our blocks weren't too good."

As the run continued to be difficult for the visiting Redhawks, they went to air for 113 yards on the game as opposed to the 20 yards by an East Buc team not known to throw the ball. It was a two-yard run that put the Buccaneers on the scoreboard with 4:31 to go in the last quarter. Rather than take a chance with another touchdown, East Buc went for a two-point conversion via a pass play that went incomplete. The Redhawks held on to the score to take the slim win and improve to 2-1 in district play.

"We had to stop their run because they don't throw the ball often and that was what kept us in this game," McDermott said. "Defensively, we played very well by putting the ball in tough spots and stopped their four times inside the 25-yard line. We maybe weren't ready, but we did our best. It's better to win ugly than lose pretty."

North Tama was led in yards by Zach Greiner with 73 yards on two receptions, followed by Tyler Morrison with 20 yards on 11 carries and 26 yards on two receptions. Greiner also led in tackles with 10 total, followed by Noah Bond and Luke Pennell with 8.5 tackles and Skyler Staker with eight tackles.

The Redhawks will next host the 4-1 Grundy Center Spartans on Friday, Sept. 28 at home for a important district contest before the Spartans play at Hudson on October 12 and host Wapsie Valley on October 19.

"We need to get out running game back to where it's been," McDermott said. "It's our main strength and we'll need it against a tough opponent like Grundy Center. They have good speed a freshman quarterback who's doing well for them. It's a big game for our District. We need to play defense like we did with East Buc and get our offense back, improve our passing game."

Coach McDermott was also recognized this past week as one of 50 coaches nationwide voted in by their communities for U.S. Cellular Most Valuable Coach. This contest allows communities to vote their coaches into the top 15 to receive $5,000 for their school district.

"It's a humbling recognition and I appreciate the community support," McDermott said. "That support has always been there for us. I see it as something for our school if the votes come out right and there are financial rewards for the school district."

Voting is held on and one vote is allowed each day per email address. As of Tuesday, Sept. 25, McDermott is in 15th place by a close margin.



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