Ravenwood shocked playoff-bound Independence Friday night, defeating the Eagles 21-14.
Ravenwood (3-7, 2-3) came into the tilt with a game plan to run the ball, control the clock and not turn the ball over. Rushing 42 times for 192 yards, the Raptors were successful in all these aspects and forced mistakes by Independence - including a fumble, an interception and a blocked punt. The Eagles miscues were the deciding factor in the Raptor win.
“We played flat,” said Independence coach Kevin Dyson. “Ravenwood has been playing a whole lot better late in the season. They capitalized on some things. We moved the ball well - we turn the ball over. We move the ball well - and then we have penalties. Against a team that’s searching for victories, you can’t do that.”
Independence (6-4, 3-2) made quick work in the scoring department to start the game. On their second possession, quarterback Chase Swayze found Oscar Prado for a 60-yard touchdown strike. It looked as though the Eagles would roll easily, but the offense would not score the remainder of the game. The other Independence touchdown would come on a special teams play as Vic Wharton returned a Ravenwood punt 60-yards for the score.
Sandwiched between the two Independence scores were three Raptors touchdowns: a 13-yard pass from Avery Jankowski to Jaylen McGriff, a 10-yard scamper by Jake Cameron and a 1-yard plunge by Seth Rowland. Jankowski has now led the Raptors to three victories and two-in-a-row after coming off the bench.
“It just goes to show when you never give up good things will happen,” Ravenwood coach Joe Reitveld said when asked about the back-to-back victories.
With this victory it looks as if Ravenwood will have great momentum going into the offseason.
“I think we have about six sophomores playing and about four or five starting and we have quite a few juniors. As long as we do our job in the offseason, this gives us some momentum going into the winter months,” Reitveld said.
Independence will look to rebound as they go on the road for their playoff game against Mount Juliet.
A statistic worth noting, Independence running back Jalen Wade eclipsed the 1,000 rushing mark on the season in the Ravenwood game.