LANCASTER - The Jamestown Red Raiders picked up their third football victory and first ''boxing'' win on Friday night.
''We kept getting knocked down and we kept answering the bell,'' was what Jamestown coach Tom Langworthy said after his team recorded a wild and wacky 29-22 Class AA South win over the Lancaster Redskins. ''We just kept overcoming adversity, that's what I'm proud of.''
Jamestown trailed 10-0 in the first half before using a quick two-touchdown explosion to take the lead. But by halftime the Red Raiders were trailing again and were behind even further early in the second half before wrapping up the win with the game's final two touchdowns.
Jamestown’s Tristan Holland (20) follows the blocking of Da’Quan Hollingsworth during a kickoff return in Friday night’s Class AA South football game at Lancaster. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photo by Jim Riggs
''Our kids just keep fighting,'' Langworthy said. ''As far as coaching goes, we can fix the other stuff, but you can't fix bad attitude and we have great attitude.''
Jamestown is now 3-0 overall and 1-0 in Class AA South while Lancaster falls to 1-2 overall and 0-2.
''We talk about our league being tough,'' Langworthy said. ''Lancaster played a great game and I knew they would give us everything they had; that wasn't coach talk.''
John Czech, who led the Jamestown defense with 14 tackles, said, ''We're always talking in practice about how we're going to face adversity during the game.''
The Red Raiders faced plenty on Friday night, particularly in the first half.
''Early on I thought everything that could go wrong did,'' Langworthy said,
Lancaster was in control from the opening kickoff as the Redskins drove to the Jamestown 1-yard line. But on the first play from there, the snap went high over quarterback Kevin Colafranceschi's head and he eventually dove on the ball for a 14-yard loss. On the next play, Colafranceschi had a pass intercepted by Zach Panebianco at the 4.
The Red Raiders had dodged a bullet and managed to record a first down before punting to the Redskins, who began a drive at the Jamestown 49.
A 15-yard pass interference call on Jamestown got Lancaster moving. Then Colafranceschi had a 16-yard completion to Dan Corbi and Connor Asposto followed with a 13-yard run to put the Redskins at the 7. Three plays later, Asposto scored from a yard out and Alex Juhasz kicked the extra point for a 7-0 lead with six seconds left in the first quarter.
After an exchange of possessions, Jamestown started a drive from its own 10. On the second play, quarterback Jake Sisson fumbled the snap and Devon Knoop recovered the ball for Lancaster at the Red Raiders' 6.
Jamestown managed to keep the hosts out of the end zone and they took a 10-0 lead on a 28-yard field goal by Juhasz.
However, just when things were looking dim for the Red Raiders, Tristan Holland bounced off a batch of tacklers and returned the kickoff 31 yards to the Jamestown 45. The Red Raiders eventually faced a fourth-and-four and prepared for a Panebianco punt. However, it was a fake and he hit a wide open Mike Watson who raced 50 yards for a touchdown and then Panebianco kicked the extra point to cut the Lancaster lead to 10-7 with 4:23 left in the half.
''We've been practicing it all week,'' Panebianco said about the fake punt. ''We knew their punt return had some weak spots we could hit, so we called it and we got it.''
Watson said, ''It was a great call by Coach and we prevailed.''
On the play, Panebianco was roughed and a 15-yard penalty was assessed on the kickoff, which proved to be important.
The Jamestown kickoff ended up being from the Lancaster 45 and Panebianco successfully put down an onsides kick that bounced off a few Lancaster players and Erik Tingue recovered the ball for the Red Raiders at the Redskins' 29.
''Let's go for the big one right now,'' Langworthy said was his message to the team.
On the first play, Sisson hit Panebianco with a 29-yard touchdown pass and then Panebianco kicked the extra point for a 14-10 lead and Jamestown had scored two touchdowns in 12 seconds.
''It was a big swing right there, 14 points is a huge swing,'' Sisson said. ''All that right there is team effort.''
Lancaster bounced right back and took the ensuing kickoff and drove 68 yards to score in nine plays on a 7-yard pass from Colafranceschi to Hayden Schonert. The extra-point kick failed, but the Redskins were back in front, 16-14, with 1:23 left in the first half.
During the scoring drive, it looked like it had ended when the quarterback was dropped for a 2-yard loss by Maiker Anderson on a fourth-and-one play. However, the Red Raiders were penalized for having 12 players on the field and the the Redskins' possession continued.
After the kickoff, Jamestown took advantage of a Lancaster pass interference penalty to keep a final drive alive. The Red Raiders eventually attempted a 43-yard field goal by Panebianco with two seconds left that was short.
The fireworks continued in the second half as on its first possession, Lancaster increased its lead when Colafranceschi hit a wide open Corey Helenbrook, who then eluded two tacklers and raced to the end zone for a 70-yard touchdown. Because of a 15-yard penalty, the Redskins had to attempt the extra point kick from 25 yards and failed to keep their lead at 22-14.
But it took Jamestown a little over a minute to tie the game.
After the kickoff, Da'Quan Hollingsworth ran for 3 yards and then followed with an 80-yard sprint to the end zone which found him starting out to the right and then going back to the left and running untouched to the end zone.
The Red Raiders went for two points to tie and Sisson successfully hit Watson in the end zone, but the play was nullified by a penalty. They tried it again with the ball spotted at the 7 and Sisson completed a pass to Stephen Carlson to tie the game at 22 with 1:22 left in the third quarter.
Midway through the fourth quarter, Jamestown began a drive at its own 20 and quickly found itself at the Lancaster 29 when Sisson and Panebianco hooked up for a 52-yard completion.
''It was the same thing we had last week,'' Panebianco said. ''We saw the one safety and we knew we could beat him.''
After a 13-yard run by Hollingsworth, Sisson ran on keepers for 4, 5 and 7 yards, with the last for a touchdown. Panebianco kicked the extra point for a 29-22 lead with 4:03 left to play.
Lancaster's next possession ended when Jacob McBride intercepted a pass at the Red Raiders' 20. However, Jamestown had to punt away and the Redskins had one last chance to go for the win or the tie with 2:22 left to play from the Jamestown 40.
On the hosts' second play, Josh Colwell intercepted a pass and returned it 20 yards to the Lancaster 45 to lock up the victory.
''As soon as the receiver took his break, I knew they were going to him,'' Colwell said. ''I jumped right in front of him.''
Hollingsworth led the offense with 132 yards on 16 carries. Sisson had 38 yards on 11 rushes and completed 8 of 15 passes for 157 yards.
After Czech's 14 tackles, Cortland Haines, returning from knee surgery, was next with nine and Watson had eight.
The Red Raiders return to action on Friday with a 7 p.m. game at Strider Field against West Seneca West, which lost 48-8 to Orchard Park on Friday night.
Jamestown 0 14 8 7 - 29
Lancaster 7 9 6 0 - 22
Lan-Asposto 1 run (Juhasz kick)
Lan-Juhasz 28 FG
Jam-Watson 50 pass from Panebianco (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Panebianco 29 pass from Sisson (Panebianco kick)
Lan-Schonert 7 pass from Colafranceschi (kick failed)
Lan-Helenbrook 70 pass from Colafranceschi (kick failed)
Jam-Hollingsworth 80 run (Carlson pass from Sisson)
Jam-Sisson 7 run (Panebianco kick)