SportsDODDS-Europe Division III playoffs
Big second half propels Alconbury past Rota
October 30, 2010
RAF ALCONBURY, England — Alconbury pulled away from Rota in the second half to defeat the Admirals, 34-14, in a Division III playoff game Saturday and move on to the championship game next week, where the Dragons will try to defend their D-III nine-man football title against Sigonella.
Leading the charge for Alconbury were juniors Kerey Kuheana and Cameron Hlatky-Hall. Kuheana finished with 276 rushing yards and three touchdowns, and Hlatky-Hall had a 35-yard TD run in the fourth quarter and two interceptions from his safety position. Kuheana also contributed with 15 tackles as a linebacker, and Hlatky-Hall had to interceptions
“It was a tough battle,” Dragon coach Jeff Black said. “The other team stepped up, and toward the end of the game we stepped up.”
Alconbury led just 14-7 at halftime, getting a 46-yard TD run by Kuheana and a 4-yard run by Jeff Black. Rota countered with a 15-yard TD pass from Carlos Shay to Kevin Banks.
Kuheana’s second TD, a 4-yard run in the third quarter, was answered immediately by a 82-yard kickoff return by Shay. But that was as close as the Admirals would get.
When these two teams met earlier this season at Alconbury, the Dragons dominated with the run game and won easily, 46-6. But this time the Admirals came prepared and limited the big plays to one until late in the game when the Dragons scored twice — each time on their first play of an offensive possession.
Admirals coach Jeff Van Ausdall said he noticed that his players seemed to tire out late in the game, when the Dragons got their two long TD runs — the first by Hlatky-Hall and the second for 55 yards by Kuheana.
“It was a tough game,” Van Ausdall said. “We just didn’t have the player depth. We got to tired and it showed in the fourth quarter.”
Standouts for the Admirals were sophomore Keaton Regenor and junior Carlos Shay. Regenor had six solo tackles, five assisted tackles and one sack while Shay had threw a touchdown pass, had a sack and ran back the kickoff.
Black said both squads dealt with player injuries throughout the year, and that the Admirals did a good job of putting a compeitive team on the field for the game. Van Ausdall said the Admirals started the season with more than 20 players, but because of injuries only had 15 for this game.
“We played really well today,” he continued. “It was one of the best games we’ve played all year.”
The Alconbury defense was led by Kahlil Williams with seven solo tackles and 10 assists, and Taylor Williamson, with eight tackles and two sacks along with Kuheana and Hlatky-Hall.