Harvard builds 21-0 lead before long wait

ROCK FALLS – Rock Falls coach Scott Berge predicted some sloppy play once the Rockets’ game against Harvard resumed around 11:30 p.m. Friday at Hinders Field.

After a nearly four-hour delay because of lightning, thunder and heavy rain, the Hornets and Rockets took the field for the second half. Harvard led 21-0 at the break.

“I don’t think either team is going to be able to play  with the same intensity as the first half,” Berge said during the long halftime break. “Honestly, I expect to see some sloppy football. Hopefully, we can stay away from the sloppy stuff and get our game going.”

The Rockets did get their game going early on, despite a stout Harvard defense and the officials trying to slow things down due to the heat.

Extra water breaks and longer waits between changes of possession all seem to cramp Rock Falls’ frenetic style of offense.

“The refs kept telling us to slow down, so we really couldn’t push the tempo like we want to,” Rock Falls quarterback Jacob Mammosser said. “But toward the end of the first quarter, we really started rolling.”

Rock Falls ran 41 first-half plays compared to Harvard’s 22, and that included drives of 14, 10 and 10 plays.

But the Rockets came away with no points, as all five drives saw Rock Falls turn the ball over on downs. 

Harvard, meanwhile, made the most of its opportunities. On its second series, quarterback Peyton Schneider connected with Coty Reilly on a 24-yard TD pass, then Jose Mejia broke off a 60-yard TD scamper on the next possession. 

Christian Kramer’s 4-yard scoring run - set up by his own 28-yard run three plays earlier, gave the Hornets  a 21-0 lead at the break.

“We didn’t really play that bad on defense,” Rock Falls’ Austin Donoho said. “We just gave up a couple of big plays, and a couple of them went for scores.”

Kramer ran for 62 first-half yards, and Mejia had 72. Schneider completed three of his six passes for 54 yards.

Mammosser passed for 124 yards on 19-for-26 passing in the first half for the Rockets, with four receivers catching at least three passes.

The second half was just getting underway at press time.

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