The Jamestown Red Raiders were expecting to face their toughest challenge of the season on Friday night when they played host to the West Seneca West Indians in a Class AA South football game.
However, the challenge never materialized as Jamestown scored two touchdowns in the opening five minutes which led to a 35-0 halftime lead and the Red Raiders cruised to a 42-8 victory.
Jamestown, which is ranked 11th in the state and fourth among large schools in Western New York, is now 4-0 overall and 2-0 in Class AA South while West Seneca West is 2-2 and 0-2.
Jamestown’s Da’Quan Hollingsworth takes off for some of his 148 rushing yards he gained in Friday night’s Class AA South win over West Seneca West. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photo by Jim Riggs
The Indians came into the game with a highly-touted running attack that featured direct snaps and a lot of razzle-dazzle, but it never got going against the Jamestown defense that held them to only 110 yards on the ground and 201 yards of total offense. Cortland Haines was Jamestown's leading tackler with eight while John Czech had seven and Maiker Anderson six.
''It makes me feel good that our defense can play a hard-fought game and just go out there and hit,'' Haines said. ''If we hit, then everything else takes care of itself.''
Red Raiders coach Tom Langworthy said, ''We had not, up until tonight, thought we had played a complete game yet, so that's what we wanted and that's what we expected. A complete game where offense, defense, specials team were all playing at a high level and that's what we saw tonight.''
West Seneca West was also stymied by Zach Panebianco's kickoffs that were line drive squibs that would take a high bounce over the first line of receivers.
''We feel like having this artificial turf is a big benefit to us because we're used to playing on it every day,'' Langworthy said. ''When it's dry like this, those balls really kick up. The squibs work well and you always have to get a couple good bounces.''
Jamestown's ground attack was mainly Da'Quan Hollingsworth, who rushed 16 times for 148 yards and scored four touchdowns.
''I told the team before we came out I was going to put my heart into it and I hope you guys have my back,'' Hollingsworth said.
Quarterback Jake Sisson took care of the aerial attack with nine completions in 12 attempts for 208 yards and a touchdown. And he also ran for a touchdown.
West Seneca West had a chance to make a statement after the opening kickoff when it had the Red Raiders facing a third-and-four play at their own 25. Jamestown answered the call when quarterback Sisson completed a pass to Panebianco, who raced down the field 64 yards to the Indians' 11-yard line. From there, Hollingsworth scored and Panebianco kicked the extra point for a quick 7-0 lead.
''Jake did a really good job of throwing the ball in there, the kid missed it and I grabbed it and ran down the sideline,'' Panebianco said. ''The kid got me from behind, but I got us a lot of yards. It got the drive moving.''
Sisson said, ''With what we had played and what they were covering, it just worked out really good in our favor.''
Langworthy said, ''We don't complete that, we've got to punt and then our rhythm is thrown off.''
West Seneca went three-and-out after the kickoff and thanks to a 17-yard punt that went out of bounds, Jamestown began a drive at the Indians' 30. It took only four plays for Hollingsworth to score again on an 18-yard run and Panebianco's extra-point kick put the Red Raiders in front, 14-0, with 7:17 left in the first quarter.
The Indians' next possession ended with a turnover when Haines stripped the ball and Conner Anderson recovered it at the Red Raiders' 21.
From there, Jamestown had its first sustained drive of the game as it used 11 plays to move 79 yards and score on a third touchdown by Hollingsworth, this time a 3-yard run. Panebianco again kicked the extra point for a 21-0 lead.
The big play in the drive was a 35-yard connection between Sisson and Stephen Carlson for a first down at the West Seneca West 5 to set up the touchdown.
After another three-and-out by the Indians, the Red Raiders found themselves in the end zone again. A 44-yard run by Tristan Holland put the ball at the 8 and Sisson scored from there on a quarterback draw. With 7:03 left in the first half, Jamestown was in front 28-0 after Panebianco's kick.
However, the Red Raiders weren't finished.
West Seneca West had its best drive going after the kickoff, but a holding penalty stalled it and nullified a 26-yard pass completion to inside the Jamestown 20. The Indians punted away and had the Red Raiders pinned back on their own 5.
The hosts weren't pinned for long as Hollingsworth broke loose for a 59-yard run to the West Seneca West 37. Five plays later, Sisson hit Panebianco with a 21-yard touchdown pass and then Panebianco kicked his fifth extra point for a 35-0 lead with seconds left in the first half.
''The line united together and I actually got that chance to break free and run behind them,'' Hollingsworth said. ''I have the perfect line.''
West Seneca West took the second-half kickoff and got some momentum going as a 25-yard pass completion from Chris Lucas, who took over at quarterback late in the first half, to Tyler Perna followed by a 16-yard run by Pete Walsh moved the Indians into Jamestown territory. Then Lucas began running with success, something the Indians hadn't been doing all night. But on a second straight carry, he left the field with an injury which just added to the visitors' dismal night. Then they faced a fourth-and-four play at the Red Raiders' 29, gained only 3 and Jamestown took over on downs.
The Red Raiders punted away, but got the ball back on an interception by Justin Capuano and he returned it 18 yards to the Indians' 43.
Sisson and Carlson connected for a 35-yard completion and a first down at the WSW 25 and Hollingsworth eventually scored his fourth touchdown with a 24-yard burst up the middle and Panebianco's sixth extra point extended the Jamestown lead to 42-0.
The shutout ended with 4:14 left to play when Will Kornacki of West Seneca West scored on a 7-yard run and Pete Walsh ran in the two-point conversion to make the final score 42-8.
The highlight for Jamestown in the fourth quarter was the running of Connor Stam who came off the bench to take over the running chores and carried four times for 70 yards.
The Red Raiders are on the road next week on Friday at 7:30 p.m. with a Class AA South game at Frontier, which lost, 27-10, to Orchard Park last night.
West Seneca West0 0 0 8 - 8
Jamestown14 21 7 0 -42
Jam-Hollingsworth 11 run (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Hollingsworth 18 run (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Hollingsworth 3 run (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Sisson 8 run (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Panebianco 21 pass from Sisson (Panebianco kick)
Jam-Hollingsworth 24 run (Panebianco kick)
WSW-Kornacki 7 run (Walsh run)