A big momentum shift late in Friday’s home opener at Upton gave the Patriots just what they needed to finish off the Newcastle Doggies by a final score of 28-13.
The Doggies started off the scoring on the night with a one-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter. The Patriots answered midway through the second quarter off a six-yard Dawson Butts run, which knotted the score at 7 for a brief time. Just a dozen seconds later, Newcastle found the endzone again with a 66-yard scamper, which put the Doggies on top by a 7-13 margin (two point conversion failed).
The remainder of the quarter was a see-saw battle with neither team adding points again before the halftime break. The same back and forth continued through the third with each team struggling to get into scoring position.
With 11:13 left in the fourth quarter, the Patriots finally broke through with a 70-yard touchdown pass from Clayton Louderback to Jayden Caylor, which put the Pats up 14-13 over the visitors. The momentum continued to work for the home team as Butts intercepted a Newcastle pass on the ensuing possession and set the Pats up for another score. This time, Louderback hammered the ball in from the 14 yard line and dove across the goal line for the Pat’s third score.
The Patriots finished off the Doggies for good when Butts broke free on a run up the middle and outran an exhausted Newcastle defense from 32 yards out for the last score of the night.
Butts finished the night with 190 yards on 18 carries, Louderback tallied up 70 on 12 rushes and Tanner Hofland ran the ball five times for 24 yards.
Louderback finished the night with three pass completions on eight attempts for a total of 75 yards and one interception. Caylor had one catch for 70 yards, Dillon Barritt hauled in one for four yards and Butts had one reception for one yard.
Jerett Schloredt was perfect once again with extra point kicks, going four for four.
The Patriots finished the night with 359 yards in total offense.
Defensively, Caylor racked up four solo tackles and eight assists. Butts had three solo and three assisted tackles along with a pass breakup and an interception.
Barritt had a pair of solo tackles, four assists, broke up one pass and recovered a fumble. Josiah Rudloff had one quarterback sack and eight assisted tackles. Hofland finished with one solo and 11 assisted tackles.
Isaac Bishop had one solo, seven assists and shared a sack. Louderback finished with three solo and two assisted tackles.
Friday night marks the long-anticipated return of football to Sundance and the first ever evening game under the lights at the new Croell Field. Kickoff for the game against Lusk is scheduled for 7 p.m.