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home : sports : sports Wednesday, May 25, 2016

10/3/2012 Email this articlePrint this article 
Northeast senior Ben Hildebrandt catches a pass in the back of the end zone to convert a two-point try during the Rebels’ game with Camanche, Friday night. Hildebrandt had a pretty memorable Friday as the senior was named homecoming king during a pep assembly earlier in the afternoon before catching a pair of passes for 123 yards and a touchdown during the game with the Indians.
Members of the Northeast defense pile on a Camanche ballcarrier during Friday night’s game between the two teams. The Rebel defense allowed just over 200 yards of total offense in the contest, but the Indians started two drives inside the Rebel 10-yard line and returned two kicks back for touchdowns in a 47-8 win.
Early hole only gets deeper for Northeast in loss

By Ross Eberhart
Sports editor

With a big homecoming game against an area rival, the Northeast football team was looking to Friday's 2A district 4 contest with Camanche as something to build on.

Instead, Northeast's game with the Indians was defined by a hole that the Rebels never really were able to escape.

Turnovers on their first two possessions put the Rebels down 14-0 midway through the first quarter and the hole grew from there as Camanche took advantage of five Rebel turnovers and scored twice on kick returns in the second half to earn a 47-8 victory.

"There's never a good time to commit a turnover, but when it happens on such a short field it's tough to overcome," Northeast head coach Ryan Unruh said. "We were facing an uphill battle all night.

"We kept crawling and clawing and climbing the hill, but it only seemed to get taller."

The Rebels got the ball first in the game, but they did not have it for long as Camanche intercepted a Northeast pass and brought it back to the 14-yard line. A penalty on the tackle cut off seven more yards and the Indians started their first drive on the Rebel seven.

The Northeast defense held firm and forced a fourth down just inside the one-yard line, but Camanche got to the corner on a quick pitch and burst across the goal line for a touchdown. The extra point went awry, but the Indians still had a 6-0 lead.

The Rebels seemingly avoided disaster when they recovered a fumble on second down during their next drive, but the relief was short lived as Camanche sacked Northeast quarterback Matt Lorenzen moments later and the ball popped free with the Indians recovering on the Rebel eight.

This time it took the Indians just two plays to find the end zone. Camanche successfully converted its two-point try as well and it was 14-0.

The Rebels opened their third drive of the game with a pair of runs, but faced another third down and disaster struck again as Camanche picked off a pass for the second time.

This time, though, the Indian drive ended without points. In fact, Camanche went three-and-out after a sack by Brady Eberhart put the Indians far behind the chains.

The Rebels continued to struggle on offense as Lorenzen was sacked on both second and third down to force a punt and the Indians were in business again as a long punt return gave Camanche the ball at the Rebel 15.

The Rebel defense, though, came through with a big play of its own. Northeast stopped Camanche on both first and second down and Lorenzen stepped in front of a pass on third down for an interception to give the ball back to the Rebels.

With a glimmer of momentum after the possession change, the Rebels picked up a first down on the ground and then earned another through a pass interference penalty on the Indians.

The drive, though, stalled and Northeast was forced to punt the ball back to the Indians.

The next two drives also ended in punts before Camanche got on the scoreboard again late in the second quarter.

The Indians got a boost from a Rebel penalty during their punt return and then converted a third down when Northeast was called for a questionable pass interference call.

Camanche picked up another first down through the air, but then moved back on a holding penalty. Unfortunately for the Rebels, the Indians followed up the penalty with a long pass down the sideline that was caught for a touchdown. The Indians converted another two-point conversion and it was 22-0.

The next Rebel drive ended in another turnover inside Northeast territory and Camanche wasted little time taking advantage as another deep pass to nearly the exact same spot resulted in another touchdown. This time the Indians kicked the extra point and it was 29-0.

Time ran out on Northeast's next drive and the two teams went into the half with the Rebels in a big hole.

It turned out to be a hole that continued to grow as Michael Osaro took the opening kickoff of the second half and returned it all the way back for a touchdown.

Northeast came right back with its own strong return as senior Kevin Boughton pushed the ball into Camanche territory.

The Rebels picked up another first down on a draw by Tevin Stoecker, but then ran into problems and Lorenzen was stopped just short on a 4th-and-7 run.

The next three drives contained a total of seven offensive plays. Camanche went three-and-out on its drive, but then got the ball right back when Northeast fumbled. This drive also ended up with a three-and-out and the Rebels got the ball again.

This time Northeast made the most of its opportunity as Lorenzen tossed a long pass to Ben Hildebrandt, who got behind the defense and won a footrace to the end zone for an 80-yard touchdown.

Hildebrandt caught the two-point conversion as well and Northeast was on the board at 35-8.

Unfortunately the momentum was short-lived as Northeast had trouble with its kickoff coverage for a second time and Osaro took advantage, returning a second kick back for a touchdown. The extra point was missed, but the momentum was back with the Indians.

Lorenzen connected with Hildebrandt on another big pass play during the Rebels' ensuing drive (this one covering 43 yards), but then was sacked on two-straight plays and Northeast turned the ball over on downs.

Camanche then put the finishing touches on the game with Derek Harksen taking a pitch and scooting more than 70 yards for a touchdown.

Lorenzen passed for 143 yards during the game with the touchdown to Hildebrandt, who had two catches for 123 yards. Jack Murphy had a catch for six yards, while Stoecker caught two balls for 14 yards (Stoecker also led the team with 20 rushing yards).

The Rebels allowed just 206 yards of total offense in the game with Eberhart leading the defense with 10 tackles, including four solo stops and the sack.

Cole Dickey added seven tackles (three solo) with Stoecker and Derick Johns coming up with five each (Stoecker joined Eberhart with four solo tackles). Ethan Krogman added a sack of his own for the Rebels.

Things do not get much easier for the Rebels, who hit the road for a district battle with Center Point-Urbana.

The Stormin' Pointers are 5-1 on the season with the lone loss coming by just six points against Dyersville Beckman.

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