By Doug Gorman
The Riverdale Raiders built a two-touchdown lead at the end of the first half, then held off a determined comeback attempt from Redan in the last two quarters en route to a 27-20 victory.
The Raiders rolled up 318 yards of total offense compared to 232 yards for Redan, but it was Jerome Touchstone's acrobatic interception in the end zone on Redan's long pass late in the fourth quarter that saved the day for the Raiders.
Touchstone was thecataylist on both sides of the ball for the Raiders as he also scored the Raiders' second touchdown of the game in the second quarter. His fumble recovery set the stage for a third touchdown right before the end of the first half.
"He is does a great job out there for us," said Riverdale head coach Rodney Hackney. "That was a big interception."
The victory keeps Riverdale unbeaten heading into next week's game against rival Morrow. .It will be Riverdale's third non-region game.
"I got a chance to scout Morrow on Friday night and they look like an improved football team. It should be a really good game, Hackney said.
Riverdale started the scoring on an impressive 5-play, 80-yard drive.
After a couple of long runs by Anthony Edwards, the Raiders tested the Redan secondary and won when quarterback Rashad Nettles connected with Doug Jennings on a 34-yard touchdown pass, the extra point failed as the Raiders clung to a 6-0 lead.
Redan marched right down field on it first series of the night, opening with good field position after running the Riverdale kickoff back to its own 49.
Seven plays later the Ronald Varner was in the end zone. The extra point gave Redan a 7-6 lead.
Riverdale scored two unanswered touchdowns. The first came when Nettles again went airborne, hooking up with Touchstone on a 56-yard pass with 3:36 remaining in the first quarter.
After Touchstone forced a Redan fumble midway through the second quarter, Riverdale went right back to work.
Taking over at the Redan 14, Nestles took just one play to find the end zone when he called his own number and rambled in from the 14.
In the second half, Redan went to a ball-control offense in an attempt to keep the Riverdale offense on the sidelines.
The second touchdown of the day by Chad Morgan and two field goals by Nebiyu Mulat cut the Redan to 21-20.
With 1:54 seconds remaining, Jennings capped the victory for Riverdale with a 7-yard scamper.