Bears Lose to Reynolds
By Jasmine Desarae Staff Writer
Union City, PA – It was a beautiful Friday night in Union City as the Bears battled the Reynolds Raiders in their home-opener. The game was filled with flags, fumbles and frustration during the Bears devastating 44-28 loss.
The first quarter began positively for the Bears as they won the coin toss. After kick-off, however, the ball came loose and was recovered by the Raiders. Playmaker for the Raiders Jordan Decarmen (#6) took advantage of the field position and with the help of his teammates scored the first touchdown early in the first quarter. The Bears, however, retaliated by blocking the extra point attempt.
The first two of eighteen flags began early in the game as the Bears lost ten yards for two false starts. Their luck only spiraled as quarterback Blake Hornaman (#2) was sacked giving the Bears a 3rd and long. When 4th down came, though, the Bears offense did not back down. Hornaman passed the ball to William Burgess (#5) presenting the team with another chance. They continued to move down the field, showing their strength and prompting announcer, Coach Vanzandt, to insist the crowd make some
noise for our young offense! The Bears tied up the score as Gavin Henry (#11) pushed through the line for a touchdown with two and a half minutes left in the quarter.
The Raiders were not intimidated as Tyrese Baker (#1) ran sixty-three yards for another Reynold’s touchdown, or so they thought. Holding was called and the TD was brought back. From here, the Raiders received two more flags awarding them with a 1st and 20 at the 35-yard line. Determined to recover, Baker ran down the field, but Burgess stopped with him with a touchdown saving tackle. Unfortunately, in only a few plays, the Raiders were in the end zone again and a good two-point conversion make the score 14-6 with seventeen seconds left in the first quarter.
The second quarter did not begin well for the Bears as Hornaman’s pass was intercepted by Luca Tofani
(#5) which was the inevitable start of the Raiders third touchdown – a 42-yard run by Decarmen – with seven and a half minutes left. Reynolds snuck in some trick plays as their fake punt turned into two extra points for the Raiders.
Again, Union City fell short as they were forced to punt on 4th and long. The raiders, however, fumbled the ball and gave Logan Kesselring (#21) the chance to recover it and give the Bears awesome field position. With their adrenaline flowing, the Bears were able to turn the recovery in to a touchdown by Henry once again. With a two-point conversion boosting their score, the Bears were now down 22-14.
The teams went back-and-forth as Baker scored another touchdown with 2:18 remaining in the second
quarter. Just long enough for Hornaman to pass to Miles Parker (#16) for a 32-yard connection and a
touchdown, making the score 30-20 late in quarter two.
During halftime, fans were able to enjoy both bands – Reynolds and Union City. The first showcase was
Reynolds’ band whose theme centered around America. While Union City’s band had the theme of A Night on the Town.
The second half did not begin in Reynolds favor as they quickly moved to a 4th and 13 resulting in them punting (twice) to the Union City Bears. The ball quickly returned the Raiders, however, as they recovered yet another loose ball by the Bears. When it seemed they would have to punt again, the Raiders pulled another trick play by faking a punt and coming up with the first down. Moving down the
field, they almost never saw Brayden Kinney (#20) as he intercepted the pass and ran it back for an 80-yard touchdown. The roar of the crowd echoed around the field as the score was now 30-28 late in the third quarter.
Early in the fourth quarter, Baker and team added eight points to their score showing no fear. When on defense, though, the Raiders continued to get flags, pushing the Bears in the right direction. The Bears, however, could not turn this into more points as they had three incomplete passes in a row, eventually forcing them to turnover on downs. With four minutes left in the quarter, Reynolds upped their score to 44 with a touchdown by Decarmen which essentially ended the game.
Though the Union City Bears fought hard every minute of every quarter, the Raiders came out on top. The Bears will be playing at Eisenhower next Friday night at 7 for their first region game.