The start of the 2009 season for the Golden Tide of Curwensville has been one of great success, but has also been one of missed opportunities.
Through the first three games, Curwensville has came from behind to defeat Port Allegany and overpower Otto-Eldred for their two wins.
Last Friday when the Tide returned home, things just didn\’t go their way and they lost to Coudersport.
The schedule doesn\’t get any easier this week as Curwensville is again on the road to face the undefeated Cameron County Red Raiders.
This game last year was one of the most exciting of the year for both teams. Inside a rowdy and loud Riverside Stadium, these two came into the game undefeated and at the top of the Allegany Mountain League. Curwensville erased a 14-point deficit to tie the game in the fourth quarter. However, in the second overtime, the Red Raiders scored a field goal then held back the Tide on the goal line to secure a 23-20 win.
This year, Curwensville is a different team and has a lot of work to do heading into this matchup. Despite having a winning record, the Tide has had a problem with turnovers in their first three games. Curwensville has fumbled the ball 12 times and have lost six of them. Quarterback Sam Gardner also threw his first interception of the season last week, but has made some very risky throws each game.
On the other side of the ball, the Red Raider offense has not turned the ball over once in their first three games. The key for that success is a very disciplined run game as the team averages nearly 300 yards per game on the ground. Nearly 50 percent of those yards have come from running back Andy Lippert. His ground game is superb as he has five touchdowns on the year to coincide with his 143 yards per game average.
Curwensville has just as an impressive run game, averaging 229 yards per game. Running back Jed Greslick has been the backbone of the ground game this year and will certainly be carrying the Tide into this game. If they are to have success, the running game must be working, which will give Gardner a chance to bring the passing game into the game plan.
Gardner has had a decent year throwing the ball, going 15 for 33 with 212 yards and only one interception.
It will be a team looking for redemption and one team looking to remain perfect when the game begins at 7 p.m. Friday night.