The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Clinton

October 13, 2012

Kings can't escape early hole

CLINTON — Clinton did not get the start it wanted Friday night against Mississippi Athletic Conference-leading Pleasant Valley.

It took the Spartans (8-0) just 13 seconds to take the lead as Pleasant Valley junior Nick Slavens returned the opening kickoff 81 yards for a touchdown.

“To get the opening kickoff and crack it like that kind of set the tone in the first half,” Clinton coach Lee Camp said. “I thought we maybe dropped our head a little bit.”

That letdown cost the River Kings (2-6) as Pleasant Valley took a 28-0 halftime lead en route to a 35-0 victory.

“I was really proud of our kids,” Camp said. “We came out and hit hard. We were really aggressive in the second half and played a lot better, more confident.”

After being a major weakness early in the season, the River Kings defense has continued to improve.

Heading into the game, one focus for the Clinton defense was limiting the running of Pleasant Valley quarterback Brady Letney.

Camp said he thought his team did a pretty good job of that. Letney — who averaged more than 100 yards rushing a game and 8.5 yards a carry — was held to 52 yards on nine carries.

“We’ve been getting better,” Camp said. “I think with the surge up front, our linemen are doing a good job. Our backers are rolling. We are doing some good things defensively.”

Letney did pass for a season-high 130 yards, including a 29-yard touchdown strike to AJ Smith, which put the Spartans ahead 28-0 with less than a minute left in the first half.

“They threw the ball well and caught it,” Camp said. “They had a couple of nice plays, but for the most part, they had to earn it. The defense did some things really well.”

On the opposite side, Clinton’s offense — which was a strength early in the season — was shut out for the first time this season and gained only 116 yards.

“We struggled,” Camp said. “A couple of times, we shot ourselves in the foot with a penalty or a mental mistakes. They were adjusting and really coming off the edge. We’ve got to make sure we pick people up. We’re trying to crack with receivers. We were moving some people around. It was giving us a bad angle and we tried to adjust it.”

Part of the adjustment was going into the Wildcat formation, run by twins Dustin and Alex Caldwell.

It worked for a while and Dustin Caldwell was Clinton’s leading rusher, but the River Kings could not sustain it.

“Like most Wildcats, it was temporary, not a fix for the whole time,” Camp said. “Our kids played hard. We did some things well. We just didn’t get it in the end zone when we needed to.”

Another positive for Clinton was its kickoff returns. Dustin Caldwell returned one 50 yards to Pleasant Valley’s 45. Alex Caldwell also had a return of more than 30 yards.

“I thought our kickoff return team did a really fine job,” Camp said. “We’ve gotten our people on theirs and created a seam. Those two guys, they’ll stick it in there pretty hard. Really what it comes down to a lot of times is they’re the not fastest kids on the field. They run hard and they’ve had some great returns. Ryan Driscoll and the couple kids right in front of them do a really nice job of creating a wedge.”

Pleasant Valley’s win combined with a North Scott 47-42 victory over Muscatine, gave the Spartans the outright MAC title.

The River Kings need a win next Friday against Bettendorf. With a win over the 5-3 Bulldogs, Clinton has a chance at a playoff berth. A loss and the season is over.

“I was impressed with the kids that they came out and played hard in the second half,” Camp said. “That’s leading up to now a one-game season. If you win, you move on. You can see their heads pick up when you put it that way. We’ve got to go out and do this. We told them if you’re close, you’ve got to get healthy and get back. We need everybody to buy in.”

Text Only
Clinton
  • photo-55.JPG UPDATE: 17-year-old fell, airlifted at Eagle Point Park (with VIDEO)

    A 17-year-old male was airlifted to Iowa City Monday afternoon after he fell approximately 80 feet from the bluff at Eagle Point Park. The male was not identified by authorities.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Interest in Ernst rises as his game does, too

    Brady Ernst is having a summer to remember.
    The rising River King senior is spending the summer playing for the Iowa Barnstormers traveling basketball team. This weekend they're playing in the Fab48 tournament in Las Vegas.

    July 26, 2014

  • PHOTOS: Clinton Junior Baseball 2014 Tournament Winners

    Clinton Junior Baseball 2014 Tournament Winners - Majors, Minors, Pee Wee

    July 25, 2014

  • JUST IN: Man shot in downtown Clinton

    A 32-year-old man was shot in downtown Clinton early today.

    July 25, 2014

  • YWCA offers lifeguard training

    CLINTON — The YWCA will offer lifeguard training in August.The course will be held from Aug. 4 to 10 at the YWCA. This 30-hour class will meet from 5 to 9 p.m. for four weeknights and from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday. A possibility of adding a class from 1

    July 25, 2014

  • Concurrent terms ordered in burglary case

    CLINTON — A Clinton man will serve four concurrent prison terms for his role in a string of 2012 burglaries.Assistant Clinton County Attorney Amanda Myers on Thursday requested the court to order Cory Mitchell, 38, to serve as much as 10 years in pri

    July 25, 2014

  • Whitecaps take away Clinton offense CLINTON — The Clinton LumberKings (13-19, 43-57) mustered only five hits as the visiting West Michigan Whitecaps (20-12, 61-41) shut down the hometown club at Ashford University Field.Whitecaps’ starter Jonathon Crawford (6-2) allowed only four men t

    July 25, 2014

  • 7-25-14 1B-Photo, Clinton track Clinton king of Brady DAVENPORT — It might not have been the blue oval, but Clinton track can place its mark at the top of the hill.The quartet of Barrion Collins, Marquis Robinson, Quavon Jones and Deshond Robinson won the high school boys division of the Battle Up Brady

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Habitat for Humanity hosts fundraiser

    CLINTON — Habitat for Humanity will host a fundraiser in Thomson, Illinois.The Clinton County group will showcase Laid Back Luau from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at Heirloom Cafe in Thomson. The event will feature games, prizes, music train rides for

    July 25, 2014

  • 7-24-14 1B-Photo, Choice 2 Cinderella run ends DUBUQUE — The playoff run was fun while it lasted. Dubuque Hempstead, the No. 1-ranked baseball team in Class 4A entering Wednesday, ended Clinton’s chances at back-to-back appearances in the state tournament in Des Moines. The Mustangs knocked out t

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

Clinton Herald Photos


Browse, buy and submit pictures with our photo site.

Facebook