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Warriors rally past Kennedy

Brookfield topples JFK, 28-14

September 29, 2013
By MIKE McLAIN - Tribune Chronicle (mmclain@tribtoday.com) , Underthelights

WARREN - There was a gathering of minds among the Brookfield Warriors at halftime to discuss more than where to watch the NFL games today.

Instead of patting each other on the backs, players and coaches challenged each other to elevate their performance level after being stung on two long touchdowns by the John F. Kennedy Eagles. The Warriors, trailing by seven points at the half, accomplished their mission with three second-half touchdowns in a 28-14 win Saturday at Mollenkopf Stadium.

"We shot ourselves in the foot the first half," said Warriors running back Joey Clark, who rushed for 166 yards and scored two touchdowns on 37 carries.

Article Photos

Tribune Chronicle / R. Michael Semple
Brookfield’s Kasey Tingler runs into the end zone after a catch in the second quarter Saturday at Mollenkopf Stadium. Brookfield beat John F.?Kennedy, 28-14.

"In the second half we came back and in the locker room we put fire into each other. We're not playing to our potential, and we need to start playing to our potential."

The Warriors have a 4-1 record. The Eagles are 1-4.

Clark scored on a 6-yard run to complete the Warriors' first possession of the third quarter. Kasey Tingler kicked the extra point to tie the score, 14-14.

Brian Hiner returned a punt 31 yards after the Eagles' next possession, setting the Warriors up at the JFK 12. Clark ran for 3 and 9 yards to produce the go-ahead touchdown as Brookfield took a 21-14 lead.

The Warriors added an insurance touchdown in the fourth quarter on a 13-yard scoring pass from sophomore quarterback Augustus Necastro to Tingler, another sophomore on a youthful roster.

The Eagles couldn't generate much offense other than a 78-yard scramble by quarterback Michael Roscoe for a touchdown and a 75-yard touchdown pass from Roscoe to Chad Zallow that gave the Eagles a 14-0 lead at the 8:21 mark of the second period.

The Warriors' defense was dominant most of the game, registering eight sacks. Jamar Tarver came off the edge several times to sack Roscoe or generally disrupt plays.

"In the second half we did a poor job of containing their pressure defensively," Eagles coach Dave Pappada said. "We had bad position, and they reared their ears back and came and got us.

"When we scouted them we saw they were pretty good defensively. We were concerned about that pressure. We emptied the backfield most of the night and tried to get the ball to our speed guys."

Tarver lined up on the edge and used his speed to get around the tackle. With no back available to give Roscoe protection, he often didn't have time to get off a throw.

"We gave Jamar a little more leeway to pin his ears back and go after him (Roscoe), and Jamar as a defensive end can probably run with any athlete around here," Warriors coach Randy Clark said. "He did a great job for us."

The Warriors began to swing the momentum in their favor when Necastro, who was 11-of-16 for 214 yards and two touchdowns, connected with Tingler on the first of their two touchdown plays a 27-yarder in the second quarter that cut JFK's lead to 14-7. Joey Clark handled the bulk of the rushing chores. He had 23 carries for 132 yards in the second half.

Both teams had three turnovers, but the biggest one came on the second play of the third quarter when Roscoe fumbled and Tom Hutchison recovered for the Warriors at the Eagles' 39. Clark scored 10 plays later to tie the score.

"We played very well in the first half," Pappada said. "The kids were excited. Then in the second half they obviously played a lot better than we did."

Roscoe finished with 241 yards through the air. Brookfield had a 379-311 advantage in yards.

The Warriors lost a ton of excellent players from a team that advanced to the third round of the Division IV playoffs last season, but apparently the future is still bright.

"Believe it or not we're starting over," Randy Clark said. "We have two freshmen and two sophomores starting on the offensive line. Defensively it's the same way. We have a very good group of kids. Our freshmen and sophomore classes are special."

The Warriors play at Hubbard Friday. The Eagles are at Villa Angela-St. Joseph Saturday.