ROCKPORT — The lights were bright for Homecoming on Friday the 13th at Don Palmer Field as Homecoming festivities kicked off with the Windjammers football team hosting the veteran laden Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall Dale Ramblers.
The hosts suffered a 43-0 shutout, a tough, yet realistic, awakening for the young upstarts of Camden Hills compared to the Ramblers’ starting lineup of nine seniors.
"Winthrop presented many challenges for us as a team," said Camden Hills head coach Jeremy Marks. "They are athletic, well coached, and have a high degree of Football IQ which is to be expected with a team with as many senior starters as they have."
Marks added his team played about as poorly as they could play on many different levels.
"I would give my self as a head coach a D+ if i was to rate myself and my performance on Friday night,” he commented. “Our community came out in full support and we let them down. We really appreciated the full stands and the energy the student section brought, I just wished we had given them more to be proud of. We have a lot of work to do to get better, but I am sure the boys will rally and most certainly learn from this game."
The ‘Jammers came onto the field looking to build upon their opening night victory at Old Town, which consisted of a healthy run game and an opportunistic defense that created five turnovers.
The team would quickly see, however, they were facing a much stiffer challenge in way of size and speed this time around, particularly in the Ramblers passing game where tall and fast receivers were able to get behind the ‘Jammers secondary multiple times early thus setting the tone of the game.
On offense, Camden Hills quarterback Ryan Clifford found himself scrambling to find open receivers or pick up positive yardage anyway possible, highlighted by a third quarter basketball-like shovel pass to senior co-captain Brady Hedstrom on the wing for a sizable gain, bringing the crowd to its feet due to the sheer entertainment value it provided on an otherwise quiet evening.
It was the type of athletic play Marks and his staff are enthused to see in their young squad at this point of the young season.
"We have a strong team with a lot of talent and potential,” Marks said. “That being said we have a tremendous amount of work to do to actualize that potential. We will have a strong week of practice and will focus down on Spruce Mountain and the game on Saturday."
Hedstrom and freshman running back Louis Mainella lead all ‘Jammer rushers with 29 yards each, Mainella picking up rushing opportunities late in the 4th quarter when the ‘Jammers made its deepest drive into Rambler territory up against a running clock.
Mainella and junior defensive end Will Thorn lead all ‘Jammer tacklers with three solo and three assisted tackles each.
Camden Hills hosts its next contest Saturday, Sept. 21 against Spruce Mountain at Don Palmer Field in Rockport. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.
The Windjammers will be hosting a fundraiser at the Flatbread Company in Rockport on Tuesday, Sept. 17.
The event will run from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. with a portion of all pizzas set aside for the team’s fundraiser for a new weight room at the school. Players and coaches will be available to talk football and thank the public for its support of their efforts in the 2019 campaign.
Reach the sports department at: firstname.lastname@example.org.