From the game’s opening drive, the Tigers, the No. 6 team in The Courier-Journal’s Litkenhous Ratings, set the tone. Ridder accounted for all but two yards on the nine-play, 71-yard series, capping it with a 6-yard run.
In bouncing back from the loss to Trinity last week, Ridder would complete 10 of his first 13 passes, including a touchdown pass to Samuel Taylor to make it 14-0 in the second quarter. He finished with 151 yards passing on 14-of-24 passing, and he added 68 yards rushing and two scores on 16 carries.
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“He’s only going to get better,” St. X coach Will Wolford said. “He improved this week, and he works hard in practice. He’s a great kid. It’s good to see him have some success.”
The Tigers (5-2, 2-0 in Class 6-A, District 3) also asserted themselves on defense, holding the Crimsons to just three first downs in the second half. Manual, though, at times was its own worst enemy. The Crimsons committed 14 penalties, and some of them were very costly.
For example, trailing just 7-0 midway through the second quarter, the Crimsons faced a fourth-and-7 at the Tigers’ 38. Quarterback Tim Comstock hit Eric Niemann for a pass that would have sustained the drive, but a holding penalty negated the play and forced them to punt. The Tigers would block the kick, recovering the ball at the Manual 43, and score three plays later on Ridder’s 19-yard pass to Taylor.
After beating the No. 15 Crimsons (6-1, 1-1) for the 27th straight time dating back to 1993, St. X returns home next week for the first time in over a month to face top-ranked Male for the district title.
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