6-0 Season Record leads to 5-0 Homecoming Record

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Heritage defense attempting to tackle senior Ish Williams. He then broke free obtaining a defensive 37-yard touchdown.

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By: Rikki Pepino

The crowd was decked out in black Fortune Strong shirts for Tuscarora’s annual homecoming game on Friday, September 26, going up against the visiting Heritage High School. The Huskies set a school record for most points scored as they beat the Pride with a final score of 61-14. Tuscarora had increased their record to 5-0 at the time, while Heritage dropped to 1-4 with the loss.

The Huskies had a strong start kicking off to Heritage in the first half of the game. Senior Noah Reimers, positioned as quarterback with junior Daniel Smith out of commission due to a torn meniscus, made a 12-yard rushing touchdown with 1:50 left in the first quarter.

“I thought Noah handled the situation [being the quarterback] with tremendous maturity,” said Head Coach Michael Burnett. “We felt that without Daniel, teams are going to focus heavily on Noah and by putting him at quarterback we are able to gain an extra blocker for him.”

Reimers, who committed to play at Harvard on Friday, September 26, ended the night with 4 touchdowns and supported with 2 touchdown passes. The 1st quarter ended with Huskies leading 7-0 against the Pride.

A busy 2nd quarter ensued as Husky junior Nic Speroni made for a 53-yard touchdown. Reimers followed up with a 19-yard touchdown, increasing their lead to 20-0 with 9 minutes left in the half.  Heritage, down by 20, stayed in the game as a completed pass to Heritage player Cole Miller got the Pride a touchdown though Huskies still retained an extravagant lead 20-7. Their success was short lived as they suffered a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Reimers, noticeably unfazed, rushed for a 6-yard touchdown ending the half with a 26-7 lead.

“It was interesting and different but a lot of fun,” said Reimers when asked about playing as the quarterback in the game.“The line and everyone else did a great job and that made adjusting pretty easy.”

The stand-in quarterback also broke out the second half completing a pass to senior Jordan Fisher.  In under a minute later, the Huskies quickly capitalized on their momentum as again, Reimers rushed 54 yards for a touchdown. There were no signs of the Huskies stopping as senior Caleb Lokey completed a 27 yard touchdown pass from Reimers and senior Ish Williams scored a 37-yard defensive touchdown to close the quarter with a staggering lead of 54-7.

“Teamwork and the ability to adapt to the game with Daniel out and Reimers stepping up to be the quarterback,” said Fisher when asked about what the key was for their victory. “He [Reimers] managed the game really well. He’s got to work on his throwing though,” he joked.

Heritage opened up the final quarter with sophomore Alex Carlon succeeding in an 8-yard rushing touchdown. And husky junior Mateo Taylor replied with a 40-yard rushing touchdown.

“I think Heritage is a young team that plays hard with a lot of enthusiasm,” said Burnett,  “we were very impressed with the effort they put forth.”

“They [Heritage] had a couple of great players out on the perimeter,” said Reimers. “They also had a couple of receivers who were pretty quick. I think that our line took over the game and exploited their weaknesses.”

The game ended 61-14 with the Huskies victorious against the Pride causing the Huskies to remain, so far, undefeated in both the 2014 season and the Homecoming games. The vandalization of the spirit rocks in front of the stadium earlier in the day didn’t take away from the accomplishments the players made on the field. “I thought it [vandalizing our rocks] was really disrespectful,” said Smith. “Coach Burnett was telling me how he and Coach Fortune both helped paint them and for them to come here and mess with it was just wrong. So far we’ve showed them that it doesn’t matter what you do off the field.”

“It is always fun for the whole community to win your homecoming game and we did not want to let our students down,” said Burnett. “We are very proud of our school. I think the hard work this team has put in for the last four years is what is making the difference on the field.  The team has been very focused this season and is playing very disciplined and consistent football.”

Tuscarora faced off against long-time rival Loudoun County High School in an epic duel to claim The ‘Burg once again this past Thursday, October 2. They will be playing against Broad Run next on October 10.