Boys Varsity Football · Fast Start Helps Highlanders Win at Harrison, 24-17


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Adams High School vs Harrison
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1st Quarter

Farmington Hills Harrison started with the ball at their 31 yard line. QB Keel Watson (21) tried a deep ball on the game’s first play, over the head of intended receiver John Wright (4); CB Reece Collins (1) had good coverage for Adams. The Hawks feature back, Roderick Heard (3), got his first carry on 2nd-10, and he was stopped by Highlander linebackers Daniel French (54) and Ryan Rifenberg (9) for no gain. On 3rd down, Watson rolled right looking for his tight end on an out-route, Nico Jackson (21) had coverage and it fell incomplete. Highlanders held them 3-and-out, and benefitted from a short punt, only 19 yards.

Adams took over from the Hawks 49. Highlander QB Carter Farris (10) threw incomplete on 1st down, but then quickly took care of the rest of this drive himself. After the ball fake to fullback Maurice Swain Jr (24) fooled the strong-side linebacker, Farris tucked it and found a gap off the inside hip of left tackle Bob Anderson (64). Guard Reed Vogt (79) took out the weak-side linebacker, and wingback Reece Collins got downfield with a block on a safety; Farris busted it big up the left hash. CB Ben Williams (19) finally ran him down, but not until Farris peeled off 34 yards on the Highlanders first running play, all the way down to the 15 yard line. Similar play on the next play. Farris ball faked to Swain and two linebackers tackled him, but Farris kept it. He got another block from Collins on a linebacker and was met by Heard at the 5 yard line, but he took him for a ride into the end zone. Touchdown Highlanders.
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7-0 after the PAT by Ben Patton (18)

Harrison ball at their 20. Roderick Heard took the snap out of the wildcat formation and tried to sweep left. Collins hit him first; Rifenberg and safety Anthony Patritto (3) were there to help bring him down after a gain of 4.
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On 2nd-6, QB Watson found WR Xavier Goldsmith (20) on a stop route. He broke a tackle and picked up 14 yards before Patritto made the tackle. Defensive end Reed Vogt (79) made the next stop after a near fumble by Harrison caught RB Vincent Rawls (23) in the backfield for a 4 yard loss. 2nd-14; pass incomplete after Watson’s receiver stopped his route. 3rd-14; pass incomplete; another deep ball, but out of bounds. This time 5-and-out by the Highlander defense. Nice 51 yard punt by Hawks punter David Hiser (13) to pin the Highlanders deep.

Adams ball on their 15. Fullback Nick Traficante (34) got the first two carries of the drive, for 1 and then for 2 yards off center. On 3rd-7, Farris put nice touch on a ball to Anthony Patritto (3) who was well covered on an out-route by John Wright. But the junior Highlander QB lofted it up and over the coverage and fellow junior Patritto made a great leaping catch to secure it at the 38 yard line. 20 yard pass play.
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Farris carried for 3 yards and the Hawks were called for a 5 yard facemark penalty to make it 1st-2. Patritto was stopped for no gain, and Adams was called for a hold. 1st-12 at the 35. After two incompletions made it 3rd-13, Maurice Swain gained 13 yards up the middle behind great blocks by Reed Vogt and center Tim Anderson (65). Adams was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct foul after the play, which made it 1st-10 back at the 33. Farris got it all back plus some on the next play as he again followed Tim Anderson and Reed Vogt. Reece Collins with another great block downfield, and Farris rumbled for 21 yards, of 8 of which came after contact. 1st-10 at the Harrison 46. A pass interference penalty on Harrison moved it down to their 31, and Farris kept it again. Bob Anderson and Nico Jackson with good blocks, and Farris carried tacklers for 4 yards after contact on the way for 10 more yards to move the sticks down to the 21. Swain Jr. rumbled for 4 up the middle. Then, after a Hawk offsides penalty, Patritto found room for 4 more off tackle. 1st-Goal at the 8. Farris was stopped for 1, then Patritto carried for 5 down to the 2 yard line for the last play of the quarter.

2nd Quarter

3rd-Goal from the 2. Adams lined up in a 2 back set with Rifenberg and Patritto in the backfield. Patritto got it cut inside the lead block of Rifenberg and outside the seal by Bob Anderson for the Adams TD.
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14-0 Highlanders with 4 seconds gone in the quarter after Patton’s extra point was true.

Harrison, running the straight I formation with no tight ends and three wideouts, started 1st-10 at their 20. The tailback Heard got the give and went for 4; Daniel French on the stop. Then French got help from Rifenberg to stop Heard after 5. French looked like he would have a hand in all three tackles on a 3-and-out after he dropped Heard for a 2 yard loss on 3rd-1, but a helmet to helmet penalty was called on one of his teammates as he drug the Northwestern University-bound workhorse to the turf. 1st-10 at the 44. Watkins hit John Wright on a short in-route and he picked up 13 before Collins brought him down. Heard found room for 9 yards behind the block of 6’5” 265lb. left tackle Maverick Henson (77), who will play football at CMU next year. Nick Kania (2) brought down Heard from his cornerback position. On first down, Heard, again showcasing amazing elusiveness, alluded Rifenberg in the backfield with a jump cut, and burst though an alternate hole in the line for 12 yards before French drug him down. 1st-10 from the Adams 22, and the Highlanders got a break. The center shotgun snap sailed over the head of Heard in the wildcat formation. Heard recovered, but took a 21 yard loss on the play, the only reason the blue-chipper didn’t hit the century mark in yardage on the night. This killed the drive. Two incompletions followed, the first was a great interception by Anthony Patritto along the home sideline that was called out of bounds.
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Nico Jackson had good coverage on a deep ball intended for Williams on 3rd down. 44 yard punt by the Hawks

Adams 1st-10 from their 13. Patritto got dropped for a 1 yard loss. Swain was able to gain 5 behind a pancake double team block by Tim Anderson and Reed Vogt. But Farris kept it on 3rd-6 and Harrison was not fooled. 3 yard loss and Patton came on to punt. An offside penalty made it 4th-4 from the 19. Patton got off a great kick that angled to the sideline and the long-snapper, Jake Schuler (14) was there to bring down Heard for no gain on the return.

Harrison in the straight I formation at their 37. They gave it to the upback Vincent Rawls going left and it was his turn to display some evasiveness. Rifenberg was in the backfield to contain him and make him reverse field back to the right. Rawls made 3 more defenders miss him on the way to the opposite sideline where he was able to turn the corner and gain 13 before Jackson made him lose his footing. On 1st-10 from midfield, Rifenberg was in the backfield again, and this time able to hold on to the slippery Heard for a 2 yard loss. LB Logan Sayre (27) helped finish him off. Reece Collins broke up a Watson pass intended for Wright on second down. 3rd-10. They tried to get the screen to Rawls, Rifenberg was there to cover it, but Rawls couldn’t haul in a low pass. 39 yard punt back to Adams.

Highlander ball at their 13 yard line for the second straight drive. Patritto carried for 5 yards between blocks of Conner Hess (78) and tight end Jack Bishop (5). Farris got dropped for a loss of 3 on second down. On 3rd-8 Farris found Reece Collins on a crossing pattern good for 11 yards. 1st-10 at the 26. Maurice Swain Jr. hit a big hole punched in by Vogt, Tim Anderson, and pulling guard Cole Michell. Bob Anderson sealed the linebacker and Swain busted it for 16 yards up the middle. 1st-10 at the 42. Farris had his pass for Collins tipped, but he was able to dive and catch it for a gain of 2. Farris found wideout Nick Picot (11) on a nice out-route on the sideline, good for 10.
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1st-10 at the Hawks 48, but the drive sputtered from there. Swain got stopped on first down after a gain of 1, and two incompletions made it 4th-9 at the 45. Farris quick punted 20 yards to give it back to Harrison.

Hawks started from their 25. QB Watson took the shotgun snap and looked to pass, but had to roll right under pursuit by Cole Mitchell and Reed Vogt, and ran out of bounds after a 2 yard gain. Watson missed on second down, intended for Ben Williams deep down the left sideline but coverage by Collins was good and the ball was out of bounds. 3rd-8 and Watson succumbed to the pass rush of the Highlander defensive ends. Conner Hess flushed him left and hit him low, right into the arms of Reed Vogt who came off the right edge and hit him high. 5 yard loss, and the punt team came back on the field with less than 20 seconds in the half.

Reece Collins fielded the 37 yard punt and found room on the right sideline for 18 yards on the return. Farmington was called for a personal foul out of bounds, and that took it down to the 31 with about 10 seconds to play. Adams sent Ben Patton out to attempt a 48 yard field goal, but there was a false start which moved them back 5 yards. Instead of kicking a 53 yard field goal, Adams elected to send the offense back on the field. Farris hit Patritto on a sideline route for 9 yards to the 27. Clock stopped with seconds left, and Patton came on for the 44 yard field goal, which he hit right down the middle. The ball sailed well over the uprights as it went through. It looked like it would have been good from 60. 17-0 Highlanders at halftime.

3rd Quarter

Adams got the ball first and started at their own 13 for the third time in the game. Swain gained 4 yards on first down. Then Farris was caught for a yard loss before Patritto was stopped for 2. On 4th-5, Patton punted 46 yards. Again Jake Schuler was there on punt coverage, he got help from Jack Bishop to bring down Roderick Heard for no gain on the return, but the Highlanders were penalized for a late hit on the play.

Harrison ball at the Adams 48 after the penalty. Heard got the first hand off and was stopped by Logan Sayre and both of the Anderson brothers after a gain of 6. Nick Kania shot in and knocked Rawls off his feet for a loss of 1 as he tried to find the right edge on second down. The Hawks got a big play on 3rd-5 as Rawls escaped out of the backfield and no Adams linebacker went with him. Rawls took the pass from Watkins and shot down the left side for a 40 yard rip to the Highlander 16; Kania again on the stop.
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Sayre made the tackle on Ben Williams on the first down carry for 2 yards. Then Heard shot through a hole off-tackle right and gained 10; tackle by Rifenberg with help from Collins and Kania. 1st-goal at the 4. Bob and Tim Anderson teamed up for another tackle on Heard after a gain of 3 to the 1 yard line. Then Vincent Rawls took it in from a yard out, and it was 17-7 Adams after the PAT was good.

Adams got it back on their 35, but again went quickly 3-and-out. Swain for no gain and two pass incompletions. Patton hit a nice 46 yard kick, and for the 3rd time in the game, Jake Schular planted the returner for no gain. This time he had help from Chase Montour (26).

Vincent Rawls took the first down carry and broke three tackles for 13 yards before Daniel French drug him down at the 32. Rifenberg got help from Sayre and Bob Anderson to stop Heard after 3 on first down. Reed Vogt limited Heard to 4 yards on second down. It was Tim Anderson and Sayre who stuffed Heard after a 2 yard gain to set up 4th-1 at the 41 and the Hawks decision to go for it would pay off. Rifenberg and Tim Anderson limited the Heard carry to 2 yards, but he only needed 1 to move the sticks to the 43 for a new set of downs. Watson threw incomplete and took a hit from Rifenberg as he let it go. On 2nd-10 Heard was thrown for a 2 yard loss after Cole Mitchell pushed his way into the backfield for the stop. On 3rd-12, Roderick Heard faked the dive but continued down field and broke out the right. Watson rolled right and hit Heard for a big 15 yard gain. 1st-10 at the Highlander 44. Rifenberg tackled Heard after a gain of 4. Then Watson found Ben Williams who lined up as a fullback in an offset I formation and ran a curl pattern. 13 yard gain to the 27 before Patritto made the tackle.

4th Quarter

Heard took the first down pitch left, then cut it up a seam and gashed Adams for 12 more yards before Patritto and Collins could coral him. Then Heard somehow evaded Rifenberg, Mitchell, and Vogt in the backfield before reeling off 6 more up the middle.
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Patritto and French on the stop. Bob Anderson limited Heard to 3 yards on his third straight carry. 3rd-1 from the Adams 5. Heard got it again, and Nico Jackson hit him first, Rifenberg finished him off, but the gain was 2 yards. 1st-goal from the 4, and Roderick Heard took it in on the next play for the TD, his 17th TD on the season in his team’s 7th game to cap the 15 play, 81 yard drive. 17-14 after the PAT.

Adams got the ball for the third time in the half, and for the third time in the half, they went three and out. Patritto went for 4, then was stopped for no gain.
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Then they gave it to Swain Jr. off center on 3rd-6, and he was stopped after a gain of 1 yard. Patton came on the field to punt to the ever-dangerous Heard as the home crowd smelled blood. Patton hit a perfect punt that angled out of bounds so Heard couldn’t return it. 37 yard punt.

Hawks took over at their 38 but quickly flipped the field. Heard broke off 13 yards before Collins brought him down at the 50, but a 15 yard facemask penalty put it all the way down to the Highlander 35. Logan Sayre tackled Vincent Rawls after a gain of 7. Then Mitchell and Sayre teamed up to stop Heard after a gain of 1 but a 5 yard fasemask penalty was called on Adams. 1st-10 at the 22. 1st-15 at the 27 after a Farmington false start. Patritto stopped Heard after 5 at the 22. On 2nd-10, Heard took the wildcat snap and tried to sweep right. Ryan Rifenberg was in the backfield to cut him off and grab an ankle, Bob Anderson and Patritto finished him off; loss of a yard. On 3rd down Reece Collins had good 1-on-1 coverage on John Wright as Watkins tried to hit him in the left corner off the end zone. Incomplete. Harrison kicker David Hiser came on to attempt the tying 41 yard field goal, and he hit it. Tie game, 17-17.

Adams got it back at their 20 with 3:31 left in the game. Patritto started it with a gain of 9 behind the blocks of Reed Vogt, Bob Anderson, and Reece Collins. Nick Traficante gained 1 to move the sticks to the 30; 1st-10. Farris threw incomplete for Picot on a fly pattern down the left sideline. Then a pass intended for Bishop on a slant pattern was incomplete. 3rd-10. Farris hit Patritto on a pass over the middle for again of 13 for the clutch first down.
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Then he hit Patritto again for 5 yards on a short out-pattern.
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On 2nd-5 from the 48, Farris threw a strike to Jack Bishop who had a defender draped all over him on the deep slant-pattern. 15 yard gain down to the Hawk 37.
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Swain Jr carried it for 3 as the clock ticked down to a minute left. On 2nd-7 from the 34, Carter Farris threw his best ball of the night, perfect dime on a fly-pattern to Nick Picot down the left sideline. Picot caught it in stride and was pushed out of bounds after 25 yards.
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1st-goal on the 9 with 40 seconds left. They went to the jumbo package, two tight ends and two backs, Rifenberg and Patritto. Patritto got the carry and followed Rifenberg and tight end Ethan McCoy (7) around the left side for 3 yards to the 6.
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On 2nd-goal from the 6, they faked the give to Rifenberg, and Farris had to throw the ball before he wanted to under pressure. Jack Bishop was open on the left side of end zone but the ball looked like it was going over his head. The 6’4” Bishop, who had drug across the field from his tight end position, had to dive, reach back with one hand, and somehow he came down with the ball. Amazing one-handed catch by Bishop for the go-ahead 6 yard TD strike.
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Patton nailed the extra point, and it was 24-17 with 26 seconds left in the game.

The Hawks got it back at their 26. Watson found Roderick Heard complete over the middle as the Highlanders went into a prevent zone. Heard raced to the sideline, made a man miss, and was able to get out of bounds to stop the clock at the 45. Gain of 19. The next play, Watson tried to find John Wright up the seam, but the ball was a bit overthrown, and Reece Collins was there for the interception at the 33 and returned it 25 yards to the Hawk 42 to ice this one for the Highlanders.
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It was the story of two halves as Adams dominated the first, Harrison dominated the second, and Carter Farris came up big on the final drive when his team needed it the most. This was the final game between these schools, as Farmington Harrison will close it’s doors next year and their coach, the winningest coach in Michigan High School history, Hall of Famer John Herrington, will retire after this season. Coach Herrington is everyone’s favorite. Including Coach Patritto and Coach MacFarland. The feeling is mutual. Coach Herrington told reporters after the game; “But, (Adams is) good and they have some of the best coaches in the league, if not the best coaches. We just hung in there.”
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16 times before this night these teams have battled it out. 8 wins for Harrison, 8 wins for Adams going in. This win makes the final series count 9-8 in favor of Adams.

The Highlanders out-gained the Hawks in yards from scrimmage, 267 to 227. Harrison was led by Roderick Heard, who carried 27 times for 88 yards and a TD. Heard also caught 2 passes for 34 yards. Vincent Rawls carried 6 times for 29 yards and a TD and caught 1 pass for 40 yards. QB Keel Watson was 5-17 for 114 yards.

For Adams, Carter Farris led the team with 9 carries for 77 yards and a TD. He was 10-19 for 106 yards and a TD passing. Anthony “Twan” Patritto carried 11 times for 33 yards and a TD and caught 4 passes for 47 yards. Nick Picot caught 2 passes for 35 yards. Jack Bishop had 2 catches for 21 yards including the winning TD, a highlight reel one-hander in the final minute. Maurice Swain Jr. carried 9 times for 47 yards. Defensively, Ryan Rifenberg led the team with 10 tackles. Daniel French made 8 tackles. Logan Sayre and Twan Patritto had 7 each. Nick Kania had 6 stops, Reece Collins chipped in with 5. Nico Jackson, Bob Anderson, Tim Anderson, Cole Mitchell, Conner Hess, and Reed Vogt all had 3 tackles.