Pleasant Ridge tops rival Immaculatta

By Brent Lager The Leavenworth Times
Posted: September 22, 2012 - 12:03 AM

Rarely does the first 17 seconds of a football game have such a big impact on its outcome.

Yet, that was the case in Friday's Pleasant Ridge versus Immaculata football game.

Like a cannon shot, the contest began with a bang when Pleasant Ridge's Nick Holmes returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown. The Ram wiggled a path from one side of the field to the other as the crowd went wild.

"Special teams came up big for us," PR coach Pat McCollim said. "Nick is making plays and they are big ones. Guys were blocking for him and are confident in him now."

From there, the contest became an old-fashion grudge match between two heated rivals. Ultimately, the game came down to six points as the Rams defeated the Raiders 20-14.

"That kickoff to start the game hurt," Imac coach Sean Sachen said. "We gave them eight points to start and we were automatically in the hole. Once we settled in, it was a grind — a battle."

Following the kickoff return, Pleasant Ridge converted a two-point conversion to led 8-0. Ridge then struck again on its next possession. After an Imac three-and-out, Holmes took a fake punt 38 yards to get out from the shadow of his own goal posts before rushing in a 21-yard score six plays later.

It was eight minutes into the game and PR was running away with it. Yet near the end of the first quarter, the Raiders found their footing. Following a pair of first downs, Raider Drew Sachen hooked up with Connor Schmidling for an 8-yard TD pass. The two-point attempt was good and the first quarter ended 14-8 Ridge.

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