Red Devils break three-game losing streak with a win at home against Delran

Coach Lucas and the team attribute the win to consistency and dedication during practices

Lillian Drueding, Managing Editor

The Red Devils turned around their three-game losing streak on September 7, the team’s Senior Night, in their non-conference game against Delran. Their 36-14 win puts Rancocas Valley in a new position for the upcoming playoff season. 

The night started with recognition for the seniors not only on the Football Team, but those in the Marching Band and cheerleading team as well. Seniors celebrated their years at RV as they walked through the inflatable tube entrance escorted by family members. Seniors from the Sports Medicine Club, Anna Caporale and Melanie Earley, also earned recognition for their dedication to RV sports like football.

Both teams needed the win: RV, to break their three-game losing streak, and Delran to regain confidence after the struggle of an 0-6 season. 

The matchup was personal for RV Coach Lucas as the former coach of the Delran Bears.

“[For] Coach Lucas, that was his old ex-school, but he wanted this game more than any of us on the field,” said senior Jase Deiter. 

Coach Lucas may have started out at Delran, but he notes the importance of where he is now.

 “This is my team,” he said. “This is my home. [RV is] where my heart’s at.”

RV came out ready to play. They earned their lead in the first quarter of the game. Senior quarterback Kevin Burr handed off to Jerimya Paula, sprinting to gain yards in the first down of the night. RV moved into a hurry-up offense, and backup quarterback Deiter took the snap and threw the ball deep to his brother, Brody Deiter. The ball was caught, earning RV a touchdown in only the first minute of the game.  

The touchdown would provide momentum the team would carry through the rest of the game. 

“The ball was in our court the whole game,” said Deiter.

Delran responded with their own touchdown just four minutes later into the game. Delran quarterback Derek Nannum fired deep to the end zone where the ball was caught by sophomore Erza Thomas, bringing the game to 7-7.

RV got a break in the last four minutes of the first quarter. The ball was fumbled and dropped in the endzone, but Jase Deiter made the play to pick it up. In the following play, Deiter faked out Delran after he received the ball as quarterback and used his speed to dodge around defense into the endzone himself, securing the second touchdown of the night for RV. 

Delran answered this yet again with a touchdown in the second quarter, securing the Bears a 14-13 lead, but this would be their last touchdown of the night.

At the end of the second quarter, quarterback Burr handed off to Paula who sped past Delran defenders, breaking several tackles on the way. Although just short of the goal line, the yards he covered would set up RV for their next touchdown. The next handoff to Paula would place RV in the lead with their third touchdown of the night.

In the last five seconds of the second quarter, Paula threw deep to Brody Deiter, who caught the ball despite two defenders around him. Deiter spiked the football with one second left to earn them one more play. RV was successful in their field goal attempt, bringing the score to 22-14 before halftime.

The next touchdown wouldn’t come until the fourth quarter, when senior Jase Deiter cut past multiple defenders to run halfway down the field into the endzone. Then, RV’s fifth and final touchdown came in the last minute of the game, when Deiter ran in yet another touchdown—the third one he personally ran in of the night. 

The past three games before this [win were] a loss just because of us and we basically beat ourselves, but this week it seemed different. It seemed very personal towards Coach Lucas and the team.

— Senior Jase Deiter

“We focused a lot…much more [in] this week than we have in past weeks. We just brought it all together tonight,” Deiter said. “The past three games before this [win were] a loss just because of us and we basically beat ourselves, but this week it seemed different. It seemed very personal towards Coach Lucas and the team. All I gotta say is we’re gonna keep hunting.”

Coach Lucas said it all comes down to their “core foundation.” 

“It’s showing up, pouring in hard work, and doing it again and again and again,” he said.

RV’s next game will be this Friday against Northern Burlington, whose 3-4 record puts them only a game behind the Red Devils, making for a competitive game. The pressure to win is amplified by the fact that this weekend is RV’s Homecoming celebration.