No Place Like Home…Or Is There?
First year head coach, Will Kriesky, and his Riverdale Warriors, welcomed the Franklin Rebels to Tomahawk Stadium Friday night for the venues first game of 2016. The Warriors came into the night riding high after an impressive week 1 win against Ooltewah in the Middle Tennessee Football Classic by a score of 47 to 14.
The Rebels on the other hand entered the contest after loosing in the waning moments to their rivals in Williamson County, 28 to 24. What a difference a week makes in high school football.
The Rebels would come out of the gates swinging while the Warriors just looked flat and uninterested. The only highlight for the Warriors the whole first quarter would come on the defensive sided from stud and recent Georgia Tech commit, Gentry Bonds. The Rebels running back was met in the backfield by Bonds who delivered a blow that could be a “hit of year’ candidate, literally knocking the players helmet off.
After both teams went four and out on their opening drives the Rebels got the ball back and took a shot down field to 6’3 senior Alex Gaca, who hauled in the pass for 40 plus yards. Franklin would go on to score making the game 7-0. In what seemed like the blink of an eye the Rebels were in the end zone again after having picked off a Christian Souffront pass and returning it for a touchdown. With score 14-0 the first quarter was over, and so was the game momentarily due inclement weather that plagued several teams in the middle Tennessee area Friday night.
Once the teams resumed play Franklin picked up right where they had left off, adding 7 more points and tacking on a field goal. It was obvious things were going the Rebels way when even on an early fourth down they faked a punt to keep the chains moving. Riverdale would manage to get 7 of their own before the half, keeping the game from looking like a run away. The score at halftime was 24-7.
Warriors Don’t Go Down Easy
In the second half the Rebels did not get off to as fast a start, in fact they never got started on offense at all. Only adding three points the entire rest of the game. Unfortunately for Riverdale, neither did they. The only Warrior who ever really looked in a flow on offense was senior running back, Savion Davis, who carried much of the work load during the night.
Late in the fourth things began to look all too familiar for Franklin who just the week before had a lead slip away in the finale moments and Riverdale was more then willing to play the roll of the thief this go round. Near the two minute mark, and just getting the ball off of a Rebel fumble the Warriors were only down 20 to 27 and looking to strike. Despite the turnover created by the defense a chance for the stagnate Riverdale offense ended before it could get started, going four out on their last drive. The Rebels would spoil coach Kriesky’s first home game defeating the Warriors 27-20. Franklin dominated possession, with a whopping 35 to 12 minute advantage.
After the game coach Kriesky spoke with me about the outcome and his teams future. When asked about his teams slow start, but will to continue to fight in the second half he answered, saying:
“Well you have to take it as a positive, the kids could have shut down on us mentally, but they didn’t, they kept fighting and working. So we’ll build on that and get their attitudes right and get back to work on Monday.”
Coach Kiesky will get a chance to improve his home record as the Warriors host rival, Blackman next Friday at 7 pm.