Ridgewood Roundup

Tom Akers
Ball Girl Lauren Anderson and Lineman Brant Casteel celebrate the Spartans upset win over number two ranked Annawan Wethersfield.
Lucas Kessinger hauls in the Colton Stahl pass for a Ridgewood Spartan first down on the opening drive to go ahead 8-0.

Ridgewood Gets Win Over Rebels

The Ridgewood Spartans put one in the win column Monday, March 29th against the Stark County Rebels at Cambridge High School. The Spartans downed the Rebels with identical 25 to 13 wins to win the match in straight games.

Midway through the first game the Spartans went on a roll jumping to a 16 to 10 lead and after a sideout to Stark County put the game out of reach going up 21 to 12. In the second game of the match, Kendall Lewis took the serve with Ridgewood ahead 16 to 11 and put it out of reach with seven straight service points, when the senior was done Ridgewood was up 23 to 11 and cruised to the win. Lewis had twelve total service points along including four aces along with three kills in the match.

Hallica Warren Anderson also had three kills and Brook Jones led Ridgewood with eight assists to power the offense. Defensively, Libero Madi Jones led the Spartans with seven digs and Paige Leander had four blocks in the Ridgewood win.

Vikings Split Spring Break Slate

The Cambridge Junior High Girls Basketball team continued their season through the spring break. The girls split the week losing to Annawan on March 30th 27 to10 but downed Stark County the next night 23 to 17. Both nights were eighth grade only games.

Annawan came to Cambridge on the 30th. The Vikings and Bravettes played a close game with Annawan leading by two at the end of the first quarter and by three at the half. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter Annawan pulled away outscoring the Vikings 18 to 6 to win by seventeen. Kerrigan Lewis led Cambridge with four points and Ellie Doubet, Emma Motley, and Luca Veloz all had two points in the game.

The next night the Vikings hosted the Stark County Rebels. This time it was the Vikings holding the lead, 6-5 after the first and 11-10 at the half. Ellie Doubet, who would lead all scorers with a season high thirteen points put up seven of the Vikings eleven first half points. The Vikings began to pull away in the third quarter upping their lead to three points before winning by six 23 to 17. Kerrigan Lewis and Addie Jewett each had four points apiece while Emma Motley added two points in the Cambridge win.

Stark County Runs by Ridgewood

March went out with a cold north wind blowing at Goff Stahl Field as the Ridgewood Junior High Spartans hosted the Stark County Rebels on March 31st. The wind made it tough to throw the ball as the Spartans fell behind and couldn’t catch up to the Rebels losing 24 to 0 to end their shortened season.

The two teams battled back and forth with Stark taking the early 8-0 lead after the first quarter. A blocked punt led to the second Rebel score to take a 16-0 lead into halftime. The Spartans attempted a comeback in the third quarter but a second blocked punt squashed the Ridgewood comeback and a late Rebel score put the game out of reach for good giving Stark County the 24 to 0 win.

Spartans Stop Blue Bullets

The Ridgewood Spartans won their second match in a row Thursday, April 1st against the Knoxville Blue Bullets. The Spartans won a tough first game 25 to 21 and kept the momentum going to win the second game 25 to 19.

Paige Leander powered the Ridgewood offense with nine kills while Brook Jones had eight assists. Mackenzie Brown added eight service points. Leander combined with Kendall Lewis each had one block defensively for the Spartans, Libero Madi Jones had seven digs.

Spartans Stun Number Two Titans

The icing on the cake for the Ridgewood Spartans came early in the third quarter of the Spartans 44 to 14 upset of the number two ranked Annawan-Wethersfield Titans. The Spartans were ahead 38 to 0, all they needed to do was get to forty points and they would have a running clock for the remainder of the game. The Spartans were faced with a fourth down on the Titans twenty-six yard line and opted to go with Payton Catour kicking a field goal, the Spartans haven’t even kicked an extra point all season long but the senior’s aim was true putting the Spartans up 41 to 0 over a team they hadn’t beaten in ten years, since they had become the Ridgewood Spartans.

Things bounced the Spartans on the opening drive when Ganon Greenman recovered a Titan fumble on their own thirty nine yard line. Senior Quarterback Colton Stahl wasted no time driving the Spartans, now 2-1 in the LTC, down the field finding Lucas Kessinger in the end zone to put the Spartans up 6-0. Stahl would go 10 of 15 for 180 yards while Kessinger would lead Ridgewood with five catches for 101 yards.

The Spartans would score again in the first quarter when DJ VanHouten powered in for a two yard touchdown run. The score was set up by a 39 yard pass completion from Stahl to Kessinger. With the two point conversion Ridgewood found themselves ahead 14 to 0. VanHouten would pound out 63 yards on 19 carries including three touchdowns.

The Spartans would score three times in the second quarter alone to put the game out of reach. A botched punt gave the Spartans the ball on the Annawan-Wethersfield thirty yard line, Stahl hit Lucas Althaus on a twenty six yard completion to set up VanHouten’s second score to put Ridgewood up 22-0. VanHouten would pound in his third score just minutes later on a three yard run to make the score 30-0.

The Spartans were given one more shot at the end zone when the Titans turned the ball over for the second time in the half. Lucas Kessinger recovered a Titan fumble on the Annawan Wethersfield thirty eight yard line. With seconds left in the half, Colton Stahl hit senior Payton Catour with a 16 yard touchdown pass to put the Spartans up 38-0 at the half.

Catour would knock in the field goal in the opening minutes of the third quarter to cross the forty point mark for a running clock. Annawan Wethersfield would score twice in the fourth quarter but the night belonged to the Ridgewood Spartans who rang the victory bell with the 41 to 14 upset.

A lot can be said about Thursday night’s game as Spartan Nation wonders what this would mean in a truly regular season with potential playoff implications. Regardless of what could have been, hats off to Head Coach Bruce Redding and his coaching staff for putting together a game plan on a short preparation week and overcoming two key injuries from last week’s game against one of the top teams in Class 1A. Thursday night’s 44 to 14 win will provide Spartan fans, parents, and eight senior boys a wonderful memory of the 2021 season.