BY DAVE PEDERSEN
It was another year and another close Rockford-Kimball football game when the Rockets pulled out a 30-23 victory Friday at home.
In the past five seasons, only once has the victor won by more than a touchdown. Last year Kimball knocked off Rockford 33-26 in double overtime.
The Rockets outgained Kimball 419 yards to 370. Senior quarterback Brock Deering was a major reason why his team passed by Kimball, completing 10 of 17 passes for 240 yards. He also carried the ball 13 times for 46 yards.
Senior Sasha Galka rushed the ball nine times for 92 yards. Senior Brendon Schumacher had three receptions for 138 yards and junior Drew Van Dehey had two catches for touchdowns totaling 29 yards.
Rockford scored first on a 13-yard run by sophomore Jimmy Monssen after junior Kane Vogel picked up a fumbled punt. The lead was short lived as Kimball returned the kickoff for a tying touchdown.
A 70-yard Rocket drive was capped by a 17-yard touchdown pass from Deering to Van Dehey. After a Rockford goal line stand, Kimball scored on a 2-point safety. The Cubs followed with a touchdown to go up 16-14 after one quarter.
Deering hit junior wide receiver Jeremy Bingham for a 21-yard touchdown pass and junior Tommy Reinking ran for the 2-point conversion giving Rockford a 22-16 halftime lead.
The teams battled back and forth into the fourth quarter when Kimball scored and cut the lead to one point. Rockford answered on another touchdown pass from Deering to Van Dehey. Deering hit Schumacher for the 2-point conversion and final score.
Rockford’s defense sealed the deal when sophomore Sam Doboszenski popped the ball out and junior linebacker Jake Clouse recovered. On Kimball’s next possession, junior Nick Hall and Clouse each had a quarterback sack.
“We have things we still need to work on, but we are getting better,” said coach Dan Houghton. “The guys are understanding the new defense better and our inexperienced offensive line is making holes for the backs and giving Deering time.”
Defensively, Vogel led the way with 10 tackles and a forced fumble. Clouse had nine tackles, while Reinking and Galka both had seven tackles.
The Rockets are home to Maple Lake, 7 p.m. Friday Sept. 20. The Irish improved to 3-0 and Rockford is 1-2. Last year Maple Lake won 35-28.
Contact David Pedersen at [email protected]