The Ripon Knights varsity ended the Central Saints’ 40-game Trans-Valley League Youth Football win streak Saturday with a last-second goal-line stand to preserve a 22-20 victory.
After Kyle Jacklich scored on a 2-yard dive with 2:30 left in the game to put the Knights ahead 22-20, the Saints drove deep into Ripon territory to face fourth and goal from the 2-yard line with 30 seconds showing on the clock. The Knights stuffed a dive attempt just short of the goal line to stun Central.
The Saints were averaging 43 points a game but Nick Creighton, Ethan Cormier, Cade Alger, Reagan Kelley, Trey and Marcello Longstreth, Drew Van Vliet and Noel Guiterrez came together to hold the potent Central attack in check.
Marcello Longstreth connected with Max Steele for a 65-yard touchdown pass and a 40-yard pass to set up Jacklich’s first 2-yard touchdown. That second scoring drive began with a Trey Longstreth interception.
The offensive line of Evan Nunes, Greggory Ricketts, Mikey Gunning, Reagan Kelley and Van Vliet did an outstanding job.
Knights 6, Saints 0
Scoreless until two minutes remained in the fourth quarter, Ripon’s Sean McGovern took a swing pass and raced 94 yards for the lone score.
McGovern, Josh Grabowski, Sean McGovern. Jesse Sappien, Richie Garci, Armando Torres, Tyler Mensonides, Garrett Byran, Chase Howard, Kasey Cotton, Luke Weaver Drake Nelson, and Nolan Lingley led the suffocating Ripon defense that made two interceptions.
Jason Vanderweide, Erik Weststyn, Jeramiah Willey, and Joel Hiemstra controlled the offensive line for the Knights with McGovern, Jesse Sappien, Luke Weaver, Josh Grabowski, Jacob Van Gronigan and Nolan Lingley handling the backfield duties.
Saints 38, Knights 0
Despite being outnumbered 44-14 the Knights fought hard with Jacob Cormier, Mitch Lill and Griffin de Abreu each recording and Michael Oneil playing well at safety.
Jace Beidleman connected with Nic Schatmeier on a 25-yard pass with Evan Jeffery and Tyler Jacklich leading the running game with help from de Abreu, Michael Oneil and Schatmeier.
Hunter Steele raced down, the sideline on the Knights’ third play of the game for a long touchdown run.
Carson Sanders, Zach Grabowski, Ignacio Acuna, and Preston Zuidervaart ran for tough yardage against a stingy Saints defense. Anden Ries had six tackles for the Ripon defense, Sammy Romero and Carter Austin each had a fumble recovery and Gage Stiern, Carson Sanders and Hunter Steele all added to the defensive attack.
The Knights played with just 11 players.