Field position key for Rochester vs Springfield High



ROCHESTER – In a football game between the Big Ten Conference-linked quarterbacks, it was Hank Beatty’s Rochester team, linked to Illinois, who edged out Friday’s Springfield High team of Rashad Rochelle, linked to Rutgers.

The No. 1 ranked Rockets in Class 5A (4-1) got a great position on the field early on and took a three touchdown lead in the first quarter. Rochester never looked back in a 63-20 win over Springfield in a Central State Eight Conference game at Rocket Booster Stadium on Friday.

“The defense went out with a bang (SHS) and we’ve been on them about our defensive starts,” Rochester coach Derek Leonard said. “Give credit (Rochester defensive coordinator Steve Buecker), defensive staff and defense. They came out and set the tone.

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Beatty ran for 109 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries and threw for 133 yards on 10 of 16 passes. He made three touchdowns.

It was the Senators’ second straight loss (3-2), following last week’s 52-7 loss to Sacred Heart-Griffin. Rochelle had 14 points for 73 yards with a touchdown. He was 8 for 20 passes with 106 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

“Playing these two programs with their tradition and history and their back-to-back coaching teams is definitely a tough job,” said SHS coach Roy Gully III. “Three weeks ago I would expect us to play a lot better than we have in the last two weeks. Frankly, we haven’t arrested anyone for the past two weeks and we haven’t scored any points for the past two weeks. Playing back-to-back games like this will have you questioning your sanity, but we have four weeks left.

“We can either overcome it and improve and finish strong, or let it linger and derail the season.”

Springfield trailed 43-14 at halftime, but Rochester fumbled for the Rockets’ first two possessions in the second half. When the Senators failed to land even a first down on either turnout, Rochester’s third down was the charm as Beatty capped a 53-yard drive in seven games with a 5-yard touchdown for a 50-14 lead.

Fast leader

Rochester got the opening kickoff on his own 40 and only needed eight games to move the ball 60 yards. Senior Austin Adcock led the Rockets with a 2-yard touchdown rush. Zoe Cormier had the first of his seven successful tries with an extra point for a 7-0 lead after just 2 minutes and 26 seconds of the game.

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The Senators kicked in the fourth and 11 of their own 19. That punt went just 11 yards and gave the ball to the Rockets at SHS 30. Rochester needed a game as Beatty found Parker Gillespie to a 30-yard touchdown.

“That was the first thing (Leonard) said, ‘We have to get the upper hand and make sure we finish first,” Seth Parkinson said. “We don’t want to give Rashad any momentum. so the stressor for us in the locker room before the game.

Springfield’s second practice also started on its own 20. SHS faced fourth and third of the 27, and this time the Senators gave it a go. Rochelle’s pass was incomplete. Rochester then covered the distance for 27 yards in three games and Adcock scored his second TD of the 1.

“(Springfield) went there on several fourth downs – even early in the game – and (the Rochester defense) stopped them and gave us a great position on the field,” Beatty said.

It was Rochester 21, Springfield High 0 – barely halfway through the first quarter.

“Football is a swing game, and we have to take advantage of it, especially against an explosive team like them,” Parkinson said. “They are more athletic than us at all levels; we just have to capitalize on the mistakes.

Desperate Senators Find Success

If Springfield High needed a reveal, this might be it. In the Senators’ third possession, they seemed much closer to the team that started 3-0 and was ranked 6th in the AP 6A poll.

The Rockets won the fourth and seventh points in SHS 23 when Keeton Reiss and Johnny Neal combined to sack Rochelle for a 6-yard loss. And Rochester nearly knocked down Rochelle on fourth base, but found the light of day and posted a 47-yard gain to bring the Senators into Rochester’s territory for the first time.

Immediately, SHS had their second first down when Rochelle found Jeffrey Elms for a 13-yard passing game. Three games later, Rochelle found the end zone on a 13-yard gain. Finally, the Senators were part of the board of directors.

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After Beatty helped Rochester regain a three-goal lead with a 26-yard touchdown run, Rochelle kept pace and completed four straight passes, topped off with a 23-yard touchdown strike against Pharell Jackson.

“We just don’t take it to stop and if we see guys not giving it their all we shoot them,” Gully said. “It’s never about quitting smoking. A lot of it is the execution and intelligence of football and we just haven’t played very smart football all around. ”

Rochester slows down Rochelle

Now that the offense was rolling, the Senators’ defense needed a stop. He never came.

Beatty hit Ethan Vose for a 33-yard touchdown and the Rockets ‘defense shut down the Senators’ offense when Ian Lechtenberger sent Rochelle on the third down to force another punt. Rochester swept the field in three games to a 43-14 lead with 3:28 remaining at the half.

On the first and 10th of Rochester 15, Rochelle was knocked out by Jack Teeter and Rochester took his lead by 29 points at halftime.

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Rochelle has been arrested for a loss on five occasions.

“He’s dangerous once he’s out of that pocket,” Beatty said of his counterpart DI. “That was a big part of our game plan was to keep Rashad in the pocket, to keep our (defensive ends) from not letting him get out of him because when he gets the outside you know he has the wheels and can make big plays and give them some momentum.

“This is exactly what we wanted to prevent from happening, and I think our defense did a great job tonight.”

Contact Ryan Mahan: 857-246-9756, [email protected],


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