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Fire roars back

SPICER — New London-Spicer looked dominant for stretches of Thursday's season opener against Holy Family Catholic but the Fire came back to life with a strong second half to defeat the Wildcats 32-23.

NLS came out of the gates strong, scoring 16 points in the first quarter and led by as much as 23-7 in the first half. Holy Family running back Nick Hendler took over, though, scampering for runs of 20, 18 and 16 yards to go on a 19-0 scoring run and edge the Wildcats.

NLS defensive lineman Bubba Harlow sacked Holy Family quarterback Jacob Zay for a safety and a 2-0 lead in the first quarter. Sam Stageberg kept the ball rolling with touchdown runs of 18 yards and eight yards for a big first quarter.

Zay, a freewheeling quarterback, tossed a 40-yard pass to Nate Tinnuci to put the Fire on the board in the second quarter. NLS quarterback Brandon Adelman threw three first-half interceptions but he found paydirt with a 25-yard touchdown pass to Nick Perkins in response to Tinnuci's grab.

Zay added a five-yard touchdown run to cut things to 23-13 in the second quarter.

NLS threatened with 1:30 to go in the second quarter following an interception by Stageberg but the Wildcats ended the drive prematurely with an interception of their own in the end zone.

Hendler was a menace in the second half and New London-Spicer couldn't find an answer to the Fire defense.

Full team stats were not provided.

Holy Family 32,

NLS 23

Holy Family (1-0) 0 13 12 7 — 32

New London-Spicer (0-1) 16 7 0 0 — 23

Scoring Plays

N — Bubba Harlow safety

N — Sam Stageberg 18 run (Payton Madison kick)

N — Stageberg 8 run (Payton Madison kick)

H — Nate Tinucci 40 pass from Jacob Zay (Patrick Mulheran kick)

N — Nick Perkins 25 pass from Brandon Adelman (Madison kick)

H — Zay 5 run (Mulheran kick failed)

H — Nick Hendler 20 run (Mulheran kick failed)

H — Hendler 18 run (Mulheran kick failed)

H — Hendler 16 run (Mulheran kick)

Additional stats not provided

Jake Schultz

Jake Schultz is a sports reporter and photographer for the West Central Tribune, working his first job out of college. He graduated from St. John's University (CSB/SJU) in 2016 and is a baseball fanatic. You can follow him on Twitter @StJake29. 

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