Game 5: Raiders Bantam vs. Nationals, September 7

The bright sun and a light wind greeted the fans and players on Raiders Day at AD Penner Park. The game got underway just after noon. The Raiders came out in the first series with a hurry up offence. Austin Bueller #12 had a spirited QB run on 3rd and 7. Jack Lenchyshyn steamrolled a nice run to the right on direct snap. Will Cruise #31 scored  on an inside run, battling through defenders. Eric Adams’ #2 convert kick was good. 8-0. The Raiders had solid tackling on defence in first quarter. Punt return man Oliver Peters exploded for a 65 yard touchdown gallop on a National’s punt. The conversion kick was blocked. 14-0 Raiders. Special teams razzle-dazzle almost spelled trouble trouble for the Nationals as the Raiders covered the ensuing kick off very well. Penalties set Transcona back on this series. A fumble recovery for a TD was negated by a Raiders penalty giving the Nationals’ drive new life. A great outside tackle was delivered by #42 Tyler Wiebe. Back on offence, an errant snap resulted in a 17 yard loss. After the Raiders’ punt, the Nationals closed the first quarter with a strong inside run. In the second quarter, the Raiders’ #90 Nathaniel Reeves had a big tackle, but more Raiders penalty trouble provided a Transcona first down. The Raiders’ offence sputtered in the second quarter turning the ball over on downs. A 30 yard run by #1 for the Nationals was brought back on a holding penalty. After the punt, the Raiders were stymied by the Transcona disciplined defence and also went two and out. On the next series, the Nationals gambled on third and short. They made a first down by a nose of the football on a measurement. Then their QB stretched a broken play into another first down. A great tackle in the backfield was made by #25 Efren Diamarucot on a sweep to the left of the Raiders’ defence. The Nationals hurt themselves with an offside penalty that reversed a 20 yard run by their #31. The Raiders’ secondary provided the team with excellent coverage and forced the QB to scramble. A booming punt by the Nationals closed out the first half with the Raiders ahead 14-0.

The Raiders received the second half kickoff and came out running the ball with authority. A touchdown was scored on a 22 yard run by #31 Jack Lenchyshyn. With the convert accurately kicked, the score was 22-0. A nice special teams tackle was made by #51 Tanner Breustedt but it was for naught as a penalty required a re-kick. #48 tackled the punter after a misplayed long snap led to a turnover on downs. QB #12 Austin Buhler took a run up the middle converting a third down gamble. The  Nationals’ tough play eventually stalled the Raiders offence. The Nationals caused a fumble at mid-field and it was returned for a TD by #51 for the team in maroon. Convert was good and the score was 22-8. On the next series, the Raiders fumbled and lost the ball. The Nationals, riding their good fortune, completed a long pass to the shadow of the Raiders goal line. Fortunately for the team in aqua green, that big play came back because of a penalty. The Raiders surrendered a pass completion to end the third quarter inside their own 20. The Transcona fans could sense their team surging. #66 Cyrus O’Connor inspired his Raider teammates with an inside tackle for a loss. On third down the Raiders took a stand and held the Nationals back. Transcona’s #15 was ejected from the game on an unnecessary roughness call. Later in the contest, the Raiders struggled moving the ball and punted on third down. To close out the game the Raiders marched down the field but the drive ended with an interception. Final score 22-8 Raiders. The teal pirates played well enough to win, but the Nationals provided a stiff challenge. Way to go Raiders!

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