After scoring first with 6:08 to go in the first quarter Friday night, the Frontenac Raiders fell short of the Galena Bulldogs 32-6, bringing the Raiders to 0-3.
Frontenac senior quarterback Devon Keith started the game with a 16-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, which turned out being Frontenac’s lone score. Keith threw nine passes for 44 yards and two interceptions, all of which Galena defensive back Nick Sivert intercepted and returned. Frontenac’s rushers — which include Keith, Ross Edge, Ethan Powell, Taylor Johnson, and Keaton Bolinger — totaled 59 yards, including quarterback sack losses.
“We need to get better on offense,” head coach Mark Smith said. “Our offense needs to execute better, and we need to play the whole game well.”
Frontenac caught a break with the Bulldogs’ large amount of penalties. Frontenac gained 70 yards thanks to personal fouls and false starts made by the Bulldogs.
Galena’s offense hit Frontenac’s defense hard with a remarkable 141 pass yards even as the rain fell throughout the game, as well as 72 rushing yards. However Coach Smith maintains that the Raider’s defense answered strongly.
“Our defensive line did well,” Smith said. “They really got a chance to play tonight. Galena is a good team.”
Sivert stripped the ball away from Frontenac deep inside Raider territory with 5:23 remaining in the second quarter, which resulted in the Bulldogs’ two-score lead from which the Raiders never seemed to recover. Keith did manage to get a 20-yard pass to Powell in the middle of the fourth quarter; however, the strong drive ended on an intercepted flea-flicker with 5:19 left in the game. Galena then returned to drive the ball back into the Raiders’ end zone for their 32-6 lead.
Frontenac came back during its final possession with a 9-yard pass to Bryan Wade although after a false start and sack, the Raiders found themselves on a fourth-and-10 situation and Keith threw his last pass of the game, which was intercepted by Sivert. The Bulldogs proceeded to take a knee with 9.5 seconds left, ending the game.
The Raiders, however, feel they have improved this week.
“It never feels good to lose, but we did get better,” Smith said. “The kids played hard, they’re keeping their heads up, and I’m very proud of them.”
The Raiders will play the Colgan Panthers (3-0) next week at Hutchinson Field, presenting a matchup between father (Colgan head coach Chuck Smith) and son (Frontenac head coach Mark Smith) head coaches. The game will also be shown on statewide television.