Article and photos courtesy of MLive
By Ryan Zuke
ROCHESTER HILLS — Rochester Adams remains in the OAA-Red title hunt after it defeated visiting Southfield A&T 38-14 on Friday night.
The Highlanders entered the night in a four-way tie with West Bloomfield, Clarkston and Southfield A&T for first place in the league. They improved to 5-1 overall and 4-1 in the conference, bouncing back after a 17-16 loss to West Bloomfield last week.
Southfield, playing without three-star running back and Central Michigan commit Eric McArn, and two-star receiver Matt Gilbert, fall to 3-3 and 3-2 in the league.
Southfield couldn’t muster much offensively and was forced to punt on both of its drives in the quarter. Meanwhile, the Highlanders reached the red zone in each of their first two drives and settled for two field goals from junior Ben Patton. He hit from 37 and 22 yards.
John Darby appeared to give Southfield the lead early in the quarter on a 43-yard touchdown run, but it was called back because of an offensive facemask penalty. The Warriors later turned the ball over on downs.
Darby did capitalize on Southfield’s next drive, scoring from 2 yards out on a quarterback keeper. He also rushed for the two-point conversion, which gave the team an 8-6 lead.
Adams answered right back with a seven-play, 65-yard drive, culminating in a 9-yard touchdown run from senior Cole Patritto. Quarterback Zach Soldan rushed for the two-point conversion to give the Highlanders a 14-8 lead.
Adams had a chance to extend the lead on the last play of the half, but Patton’s 40-yard field goal attempt fell just short.
The Highlanders pulled away late on two rushing touchdowns from Stephen Roncelli. Ben Patton also kicked his third field goal of the game – a 36-yarder – that gave Adams a 24-14 lead with 8:36 remaining.