Wayne Trace’s Jake Arend hauls in a pass while being brought to the ground by a Tinora defender in a game at Raider Stadium Friday night. The Raiders won the contest 48-35. (Times Bulletin/John Rindahl)
BY JIM COX
Times Bulletin Correspondent
HAVILAND - Wayne Trace is in the Green Meadows Conference driver's seat after a big and convincing 48-35 win over Tinora Friday night. The Raiders are now 5-0 in the conference and 7-1 overall. The Rams are 4-1 and 6-2.The win is also sure to get Wayne Trace a lot of computer points, which will move them up from the current 10th place position in Division 5, Region 18. Tinora went into the game 15th in Region 18, and the loss makes a post-season appearance virtually impossible for the Rams.
The Raiders' no-huddle spread offense gave the visitors fits, as the offensive line gave junior quarterback Colby Speice all kinds of time to find open receivers. On the game's opening possession, Speice hit on a pass to Korbin Showalter for 14 yards. Showalter would leave the game for good after an injury one play later. He also hit Jake Gerber for 26 yards, and Cade Harvey for two yards. Speice ran himself for seven, four, and two yards, the last one for a TD. The two-point PAT was stopped - 6-0, Raiders, at 9:12.
Tinora fumbled the ensuing kickoff, presenting Wayne Trace with another possession, this one at the Ram 27. Four plays later, the Raiders were in the end zone again, this time on a five-yard pass to Harvey. Speice ran for the PAT, and it was 14-0, Wayne Trace, with 7:53 left in the opening stanza.
The Rams then conducted an impressive drive, going 62 yards in 15 plays, but missed a 24-yard field goal try, and Speice went to work again.
He hit on five of six passes, the big one a 30-yarder to Harvey, and ran three times, the last one a two-yarder for the score. Harvey caught the PAT pass, and the Raiders led 22-0 with 9:40 left in the second period.
Tinora again went on a clock-eating drive, 62 yards in 13 plays, capped by a one-yard sneak by do-everything quarterback Derek Drewes. Josh Camp kicked the PAT, and Ram fans began to perk up, with their team down 22-7 at the 3:24 mark. Their elation didn't last long.
Speice bombed away again, with completions to Arend (11 yards), Gerber (10), Arend again (16), and Arend again (35 yards for a score at 2:21). The PAT was stuffed, but Wayne Trace was in command, 28-7 at the half. At that point, Speice had accounted for every Raider yard except one, rushing and passing.
Things brightened up a bit for the Rams in the third quarter. A Tinora interception and long return set the visitors up at the Raider 30. Three plays later, Drewes surprised the Raiders on a third-and-inches situation, throwing a pass to his favorite target, Reid Renollet, for a 21-yard score. Camp's PAT kick closed the gap to 28-14 with 6:57 left in the third. Again, though, Wayne Trace had a quick answer.
Speice promptly moved the Raiders down the field, and hit Arend with a five-yard TD strike at 5:08, then found Harvey for the conversion - 36-14, Wayne Trace, at 5:08. It wasn't over, however.
A 55-yard kickoff return by the Rams' Kurt Kahle set Tinora up at the Raider 25, and three plays later, Drewes scampered 11 yards up the middle to pay dirt. Camp's kick was again good - 36-21, Raiders, at 3:34. Same story - an answer by Wayne Trace to pretty much end all doubt.
In 11 plays, the Raiders went 61 yards, the last two coming on a two-yard pass from Speice to Sherry with no time showing on the clock. A failed PAT pass left the score at 42-21 after three.
If there was any doubt about the winner, Wayne Trace ended it with 8:28 left in the game when a deflected Speice pass found the waiting arms of Harvey in the end zone for a 10-yard score. The two-point PAT again failed, but it was 48-21. Two late Ram TD's accounted for the final margin.
Speice ended up with passing stats of 26 for 39, 329 yards, five TD's, and two interceptions. Drewes, whose pinpoint passes often found receivers draped with defenders, was 14 of 28 for 147 yards, two TD's, and two interceptions.
Wayne Trace piled up 393 total yards (152 on the ground) to Tinora's 275 (128 on the ground). The Raiders out-first-downed the Rams 16 to 15.