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Clippers make history

CCA shuts down Assumption 27-0, stays perfect in District 5
Harry Lucas’s Superman shoes might’ve been a factor in his flying tackle of a Davenport Assumption Knight. Sebastian Calderon assisted in the take down. (photo by Chris Umscheid)

TIFFIN– The victory bell rang again Friday, Oct. 10, after the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers shelled the Knights of Davenport Assumption 27-0. The win was literally one for the books as the Clippers surpassed last season’s win total with a 6-1 record overall (4-5 last season). CCA also remained undefeated in district play with a 5-0 record for the top slot. With two games left in the regular season, the Creek Boys secured the District 5 Championship, a first for the team, and are headed for the playoffs for the first time since 2010.
Coach Matt Hughes took the momentous occasion in stride.
“These kids just come out and give everything they’ve got, they leave it all on the field, and they believe in us as coaches, they believe in the game plan… and they just go out and execute and tonight was no different. That was a hard-fought game.” Hughes gave credit to the Knights, calling them a solid team and adding, “they’re gonna do a lot of damage in (class) 3A.” Assumption had previously been a 4A team and went 9-2 last year, losing to Cedar Rapids Kennedy in the second round of the playoffs. “They come in here, our home field, against a team I’d venture to say that we’re hitting on all cylinders right now,” Hughes said.
It would appear that not only was the Clipper defense hitting on all cylinders, but running on high octane as well, forcing seven turnovers and picking up five interceptions for 39 yards and one touchdown.
Nile Rourke got the party started for CCA by scoring on a 12-yard keeper with 1:17 remaining in the first quarter. Jon Jacobson booted the extra point kick through the uprights and the Clippers had a 7-0 lead.
In the third quarter Javon Manard took his coach’s advice, read the quarterback, watched for the slant, saw the pass coming, grabbed it and ran 8 yards to score for a 13-0 lead. Aaron Akers gave the Clippers a little bit of cushion as he scored on a 5-yard dash with just over a minute left in the period. Jacobson again split the uprights and it was a 20-0 lead going into the final 12 minutes. Akers struck again midway through the period with a 1-yard leap for a touchdown followed by yet another of Jacobson’s on-target deliveries to make it 27-0.
The score does not reflect how tight the game was, particularly in the first half with the Clippers holding off advances from the Knights. And then, there were the penalty calls, seven offensive and four defensive against the Clippers with holding the most frequent call. When asked why so many, especially at this point in the season, Hughes replied, “that’s what my question was. I didn’t understand that, I didn’t understand how we were getting called on holding when they… I don’t know. It’s something we gotta work on, obviously. I’ll look at the (game) film and see what happened and see if they were getting their hands inside or not. You never play a perfect game, there’s always something you can build on.”
Penalties cost the Clippers 113 yards. In contrast, the Knights were only flagged five times (three offensive and two defensive) for only 35 yards. However, Hughes noted, the penalties and resulting setbacks didn’t deter his squad.
“You can’t control the weather and you can’t control the officiating, those are just things you have to play through,” Hughes said. “And that’s one thing I’m real happy for our kids, they didn’t let it get them down, they just kept on fighting and kept on fighting, and our defense just played amazingly… it was just amazing. Top to bottom, it was a great game.” The coach had additional praise for his crew for weathering the calls and persevering where others might well have called it a night. “These guys are just resilient, they are humble, they are just fantastic kids,” he said. “I can’t say enough about them.”
Hughes pointed to the wins as a building block. “It’s all about building the program, building the tradition and doing everything we can to put Clear Creek Amana on the map,” he noted. He added the players are laser-focused on creating history. “We’ve got a lot of great things ahead,” Hughes said. “Once again, we’ll savor this moment, enjoy it, but we’ve got Vinton-Shellsburg (Friday, Oct. 17, at home for Senior Night in a non-district match-up) and it’s time to move on and go get the next one.”

CCA game stats courtesy of CCA Football and Bob Hora:
Rushing: Tanner Bandy 13-94, Ben Gingerich3-63, Nile Rourke 10-30, Mitch Stopko 6-27, Aaron Akers 5-15, Stephen Jensen 2-6, Harry Lucas 3-5, Keyan McAreavy 1-3, Logan Viktora 1-1.
Passing: Rourke 5-9-82.
Receiving: McAreavy 1-3-34, Bandy 2-3-25, Chase Rourke 2-3-25.
Interceptions: N. Rourke 2-26, Javon Manard 2-13-1, Bandy 1-0.
Tackles: Harry Lucas 10, Bandy 7, Sage Spiker 7, Drew Wagner 7, Stopko 6, Jensen 6, Sebastian Calderon 5, Akers 5, Tim Mass 4, Cordarro Pearson 2, Manard 2, Pierre Buffard 2, McAreavy 1, N. Rourke 1, Viktora 1, Jared Eckrich 1, Jon Jacobson 1.