two thousand twenty
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Newark quarterback Anthony Bruni looks for yards upfield
By John Addyman

NEWARK – Antonio VanKoevering went down the left sideline on what looked like a fly pattern—straight down the field. Pal-Mac cornerback Matt Carkner stayed right with VanKoevering, then took his eye off quarterback Anthony Bruni, and the ball.

Bruni put the ball up. A nice spiral. But VanKoevering was still going down the sideline, and this ball was not only short, it was well inside the sideline.

VanKoevering adjusted. “I had to change my route to get the to ball,” he explained. What he accomplished, in a paucity of steps, was a 270-degree turn. Carkner realized the ball was not only short, but now behind him…where VanKoevering was zipping to collect it and run straight to the end zone on a 27-yard play.

Pal-Mac's Darrick Teeter (35) was the leading rusher for
the Red Raiders with 30 yards, and every time he carried
the ball he looked at a stack like this in front of him
That catch put Newark ahead 21-0 with 11:08 to go in the game, and sealed what turned into a 27-7 win for the Reds on Friday night.

“It was a big win for us,” said VanKoevering, who caught another touchdown pass and made an interception. “They beat us on the last play of the game last year.”

The Reds played ball control and keep-away, dialing up 51 rushing plays in the evening and ending up with 20 more downs from scrimmage than Pal-Mac. Once the Reds got a lead – and they had it in the second quarter, coach Mike McGavisk proselytized patience, patience, patience to a team that wanted to go-go-go.

“We went out and tried to do what we do,” McGavisk said. “Pal-Mac had a nice defensive plan. It was a well-played game, a little closer than the score indicated. They stopped us in the “strike zone” inside the 20 a couple of times. Our kids responded, they battled, stayed mentally tough and we were able to come out with a win.”

Eli Ebanks rushed for 101 yards, two touchdowns
for Newark, leading the Reds to a 27-7 win
Newark got on the board twice in the second quarter, Eli Ebanks scoring on a 19-yard run in a three-play, 32-yard drive set up by David Milliman’s recovery of a muffed punt reception. At the end of the quarter, Newark struck again on a four-play, 44-yard drive, with VanKoevering catching his first touchdown pass, a 31-yarder in the end zone that featured the kind of leap a hurdler like VanKoevering can accomplish in full stride.

“He did a great job catching the ball on that play, getting the ball at the highest point, the peak of his jump – just a nice athletic play.” said McGavisk. “He just went up and got it.”

Newark's DeVonte Davis (84) applies pressure
on Pal-Mac quarterback Cody Argus
Another defensive play late in the third ended up producing Newark’s third touchdown – that VanKoevering curlycue 27-yard catch. Pal-Mac’s center zipped the ball on a quick snap to quarterback Cody Argus, who was still walking to the line of scrimmage. The resulting fumble was pounced on by Newark’s DeVonte Davis, on the Pal-Mac 19-yard line. Three plays later, VanKoevering was in the end zone.

Pal-Mac finally struck, and did it quickly, midway through the final period, getting a defensive break when Newark’s Kayshawn Nelson fumbled while struggling for extra yards, on his own 27-yard line. Three plays later, Argos found Mike Russell on a pass play, and the Red Raiders were on the scoreboard, 21-7.

Ebanks returned the favor four plays after that, scoring from 10 yards out for his second touchdown – he had 101 yards on 22 carries to lead all rushers.

“He ran very hard,” said McGavisk. “Eli is our leader. He did a phenomenal job taking care of the football, getting five yards here and five yards there and keeping the chains moving.

“Defensively we played much better than we did last week. We’re very happy coming out with a win tonight. We know we’re going to be in a battle every week.”

Ebanks, who enjoyed his second 100-yard game in a row, gave credit to others. “I owe it all my line,” he said. “They always open holes on the right side, and to Anthony Bruni for good hand-offs. We had a couple of turnovers in a sudden-change situation but we were able to stick together, that’s why we won.”

Kayshawn Nelson rushed for 81 yards on 15 carries and quarterback Bruni had nine carries himself, good for 68 yards, including a 44-yarder he nearly scored on.

Darrick Teeter led the Raiders with 30 yards on 10 carries, and Mike Russell had 25 yards on two pass receptions, and the touchdown. The Raiders are 0-2; Newark is 2-0.

Newark 27, Pal-Mac 7
Pal-Man 0 0 0 7 = 7
Newark 0 14 0 13 = 27
Second Quarter
N – Ebanks 19 run (Shear kick) 9:24
N – VanKoevering 31 pass from Bruni (Shear kick) 0:38
Fourth Quarter
N – VanKoevering 27 pass from Bruni (Skear kick) 11:08
P – Russell 9 pass from Argos (Kier kick) 7:75
N – Ebanks 10 run (Shear kick blocked) 6:49
Pal-Mac Newark
First downs 8 14
Rushes-Yds 28-57 51-265
Passing Yards 75 89
Return Yards 91 4
Comp-Att 7-24-3 2-5-0
Sacked-yds lost 1-6 0-0
Punts – avg 4-33 2-38
Fumbles-lost 3-2 4-2
Penalties – Yds 4-25 4-35
RUSHING – P-M: Teeter 10-30, Argos 7-17, Nolan 5-13,
Benedict 5-7, Breen 3-6, Kier 1(-10). NWRK: Ebanks
22-101, Nelson 15-81, Bruni 9-68, Shear 3-7, Nolan 1-7,
VanKoevering 1-1.
PASSING – P-M: Argos 7-24-3, 75 yds, TD. NWRK:
Bruni 2-5-0 89 yds, 2TDs
RECEIVING – P-M: Mike Russell 2-25 TD, Nolan 2-31,
Pat Russell 2-19, Benedict 1-17, NWRK: VanKoevering
2-89 2TDs
RETURNS – P-M: Benedict 1-29, Pat Russell 3-22,
Mike Russell 2-22, Gilbert 2-18. NWRK: VanKoevering
1-4, Milliman 1-0, Nelson 1-0.


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