ND season ends in loss to Riverfield

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 5, 2014

ND season ends in loss to Riverfield

By Brad Greer
North Delta pulled out all the tricks it had at its disposal  against homestanding  Riverfield Academy, but thanks to a 28-point outburst, the speed and power of the Raiders proved to be too much to overcome as the Green Wave fell 35-20 in an opening round game of the MAIS Class AA playoffs Friday night in Rayville, La.

Riverfield (11-0) hosts Canton Academy in the second round Friday night while the Green Wave ended its season with a 3-8 record.

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North Delta stunned the home crowd by jumping out to a 13-0 lead before Riverfield got on the board with 1:04 remaining in the first half as the Wave took a 13-7 advantage into the lockerroom.

Will Kidder got things rolling for the Wave as the sophomore took the opening kickoff down the left side of the field and threw a lateral to Kaleb Joyner who raced to the Raider 26 yard-line. Kidder later connected with Macen McGee on a 24-yard touchdown strike to give North Delta a 6-0 lead after Hudson Parnell’s point after sailed wide right.

North Delta’s defense got into the act on the following series by stopping a Raider 16-play drive as James Ridge broke up a fourth down pass on the Green Wave 10-yard line. Ridge would later intercept a pass to snuff out another potential Raider scoring drive in the third quarter.

The score remained that way until midway through the second quarter before North Delta put together a nine-play, 65-yard scoring drive that was capped by Kidder hitting a wide open Michael Prine on 3rd-and 16 for a 24-yard touchdown pass with Parnell adding the PAT. Joyner’s 22-yard run coupled with a Kidder-to-McGee 24-yard hookup keyed the drive.

Riverfield broke the goose egg as Kevin Greer reeled in a seven-yard pass from quarterback Tristan Oswald with Cody Hixon booting the point after.

The second half was all Raiders as the Riverfield defense held North Delta to two yards rushing and 56 total yards.

After a short kickoff that was returned to the Green Wave 45, Oswald found Marc Simmons for a 26-yard touchdown pass at the 10:32 mark with Hixon adding the PAT.

Riverfield added to its lead on their following possession as Clay Savage busted a 39-yard run to give the Raiders a 21-13 lead with 7:07 left in the third quarter. Riverfield put the game away in the fourth quarter on touchdown runs of 16 and one yard by Savage to increase the margin to 35-13.

North Delta scored its last touchdown with on a 55-yard halfback pass from Tripp Savage to Kidder with 4:05 remaining in the game.

“We came out hot and threw a lot of stuff at them including a few trick plays. We knew we were outmatched in certain areas so we had to keep them off balanced and we did a pretty good job of that in the first half. We came up with a big stop late in the first half and went in with a halftime lead. But just by watching them on film, they are a second half team and they just wore us down. They busted a couple of big plays in the third quarter and we had to play catch up from there,“ said North Delta head coach Brandon Ciaramitaro.

Riverfield out gained the Green Wave 300-231 in total yardage which included 186-56 in the second half. Hays Hudson led North Delta in rushing with nine carries for 37 yards with Joyner added two carries for 23 yards and two receptions for 38 yards. Kidder followed with seven carries for eight yards and was also 6-of-15 passing for 109 yards and two touchdowns.

Bailey Sullivant added four yards on four carries and along with Hunter Baker led the defense with six tackles. McGee led the receiving with three catches for 47 yards while Prine added one catch for 24 yards and five tackles and a fumble recovery. Wilson Morrow also contributed with five tackles.

Ciaramitaro also commended the effort of the five  seniors on this year’s squad for their leadership.

“The main things we set out to do the beginning of the season was to establish leadership, respect, discipline and make it to the playoffs and because of those first three things we got back into the post-season. The reason we feel the future is bright for us is because of the effort these seniors put forth and teaching the younger guys what it takes to make a program successful. I am so proud of them for that,” said Ciaramitaro.