IOWA CITY - Everything about the Anamosa football team’s performance through the first two quarters of play at Iowa City Regina Friday, Sept. 6, screamed for the Raiders to just give it up.
Throw in the towel. Get back on the bus.
Anamosa watched as the Regals scored touchdowns on each of their first eight possessions and built an insurmountable 56-7 halftime advantage, which included a flea-flicker on Regina’s first play from scrimmage covering 41 yards.
With the continuous clock now set into the motion for the second half, Anamosa could quickly play out the last two quarters and end the misery.
But, that’s now how this Raider team is wired, or coached. And as fans watched mostly quiet from the stands, Anamosa showed the drive they have inside as they closed out the contest going on a 25-0 second half run, and even turned off the continuous clock and gave their fans plenty to cheer about as they walked off the field.
“You have to hand it to our guys, but they will never give up on a game, any game,” said Raider football coach Lucas Stanton, as his team tallied three second half touchdowns ending with a sensational 73-yards scoring pass play from quarterback Grahm Humpal to Christian Steffensmeier.
“It was nice to be able to do some things in a game like that and have some teachable moments,” Stanton said. “In a lot of cases, games like this we won’t even show the kids the film afterwards. Games like this we just move forward from and try and remove from the memory. But, with the way the kids played in the second half, we did create some moments, and that was awesome to see, and shows to the character we have on this team.”
Trailing 42-0 in the second quarter, the Raiders (0-2) got on the board when quarterback Nolan McLean found Trae Klatt on a 23-yard scoring pass play. After a Seth Schoon extra point, Anamosa closed to within 35 points of the hosts.
The Regals ended the half scoring the final two touchdowns before the Raiders got their offense going again in the third quarter when Alex Casey blasted into the end zone on a five-yard run.
Humpal tossed his first touchdown of the game early in the final frame when he found Kole Dietiker open for a 15-yard connection.
“We had the deer in the headlights look early on when Regina scored on their first play of the game with that flea-flicker,” Stanton said. “They took the momentum right away and we would never get it back. We did a lot of things out of character with guys just not doing their jobs. Most of those guys lacked much in the way of experience, and they found out what happens if you make a mistake at this level.”
Anamosa did manage 272 yards of total offense, almost all coming in the second half while the Regals finished with 362 of their own, almost all coming in the first half of play.
“Guys also found out how important it is to communicate on the field,” Stanton said. “We really struggled in that regard, too. The good news is, there were a lot of teachable moments to pull from this game and we will get better because of them.”
McLean led the Raider ground game rushing for 52 yards while Humpal added 43 more.
Levi Ehresman paced Anamosa defenders with nine tackles.