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The Racine Raiders gained two home victories at Historic Horlick Field in their first two weeks, and then they got a game off.

The opponent scheduled to come into Racine Saturday night had to forfeit due to not having enough players. Fans will have to wait until June 11 for the Raiders’ return for their next home game – against the Wisconsin Hitmen – to see their hometown team.

It’s a pretty good bet that fans will like what they see.

Longtime rival sees big-time defeat

On May 21, the Racine Raiders took care of longtime rival St. Paul Pioneers with a 29-7 drubbing thanks to complete efforts on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. Raiders head coach Wilbert Kennedy said the hot start has been due, in part, to an excellent coaching staff that always has the Raiders prepared for any situation.

“My coaching staff has done an excellent job in preparation, game planning and coaching up players,” Kennedy said. “There’s a lot of film study time that goes into getting ready for a game, and they all spend a lot of time breaking down our last game film and the current team we are playing that week. I have a great staff that puts in some serious overtime because they love the game.”

That dedication to film time allowed the Raiders to jump on St. Paul early. Quarterback Mitch Farr hooked up with Joe Garcia for three touchdown passes in the game, including two in the first quarter – both 26 yards – to give the Raiders a comfortable 12-0 lead. Alex Gonzalez added a 26-yard field goal to push the lead to 15-0, and then it was time for some more magic from Farr and Garcia. The dynamic duo connected for a 9-yard exploit this time, bringing the Racine Raiders into full control, up 22-0 at halftime.

“The team looked focused and ready to play against St. Paul. I was impressed with the energy the guys played with that night.”

Racine Raiders Head Coach Wilbert Kennedy

The Pioneers finally got on the scoreboard late in the third quarter with a one-yard touchdown run, but it would be their only opportunity to score any points. Farr answered right back through the air, this time with a 10-yard strike to semi-pro football veteran Ricardo Williams, putting the Raiders in cruise control at 29-7 early in the fourth quarter.

“This game gave us a better idea of what type of team we are and definitely showed our strengths and weaknesses. The biggest key to this victory was the way the offensive and defensive lines played. They were both physical from the beginning to the end. This game showed how our team conditioning has paid off so far.”

Key players

  • Eddie Strickland and J.D. Hardy each had an interception for the Raiders against St. Paul.
  • Farr was on fire, completing 13-for-23 passes for 172 yards and four touchdowns.
  • Garcia finished with 93 yards receiving on five catches.
  • Najee Parker led the Racine Raiders with five tackles.

The Raiders snapped a four-game losing streak to the Pioneers and now lead the all-time series, 5-4.

Racine Raiders stomp Sheboygan Sabercats

On March 14, the Raiders opened the season with a resounding 39-0 victory over the visiting Sheboygan County Sabercats. The Sabercats straight up did not belong on the field with the mighty Raiders, as there was minimal competition.

Racine racked up 301 total yards to only 24 for the Sabercats, who mustered a grand total of two first downs.

Kennedy was able to see what he’s got in the first game of the season.

“The biggest takeaway from the first game was just being able to see what type of players we have this season,” he said. “We were able to get a good look at new players and to get a feel of the skill level and desire to play hard.”

The Racine Raiders led 19-0 after the first quarter and increased their lead to 39-0 at the half.

Key players

Looking ahead

The next game for the Racine Raiders is June 4 on the road against the Illinois Cowboys.

“We need to keep working hard at practice, stay committed and continue with great preparation by the coaching staff to have our guys ready by putting them into position to be successful,” Kennedy said.

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