Inderkum Tigers Too Hard for RLHS to Handle

Photomerge by John Todd/

Photomerge by John Todd/

RIOLINDAONLINE.COM | @riolindaonline

It was like a movie script, really. After a much needed, pounding rain during the afternoon, the skies cleared just long enough for a shootout at the Inderkum corral. The #6 Inderkum Tigers hosted the #13 Rio Linda Knights in a game that should decide the Tri-County Conference championship.

Inderkum started the day a half-game ahead of the Knights, having lost a non-league game to Monterey Trail early in the Season. Rio Linda’s sole loss was to league rivals River Valley.

The first half looked like a heavyweight boxing match with both teams grinding out yards and trading touchdowns. The Inderkum defense lead by Nu’umotu Falo contained Rio Linda college prospect RB Marcel Brown which freed up running backs Pieter Koopman and Calvin Robinson to score.

Early in the first quarter, two things happened that would affect the outcome of the game. 6-foot-1, 287lb defensive presence Fila Hingano took a turn at running back, and rolled his ankle. He would not return to the game. Later, Rio Linda QB Zak Burdan scored on a QB keeper which was called back on a holding penalty.

Eventually the Knights scored first (6:17), when Koopman capitalized on a fumbled Tigers punt return.

With 3 minutes left in the quarter, Inderkum QB Jonathan Henry chucked a 45 Yd pass to receiver Larry Hardy to even the score 7-7 at the end of the first quarter.

Knights speed-demon RB Calvin Robinson got into the end zone to open the 2nd quarter, putting the Knights ahead 14-7.

After trading fumbles, the Tigers made the best of their opportunity when RB Austin Thurman ran 77 yards to reach the end zone tying the score at 14.

With 44 seconds left to play in the half, Thurman scored again for the Tigers, but the PAT was missed, ending the half 20-14 Inderkum.

During the first half, Rio Linda controlled the ball, while Inderkum controlled the Knights running game. The Knights momentum was interrupted with the late 2nd quarter score by Thurman, but as long as they could keep the ball out of the Tiger’s hands they’d be able to grind out yardage and keep the game close… but that’s not what happened.

Inderkum went into the locker room at halftime with the momentum, ate their spinach, said their prayers and took their vitamins and came back to the field with a purpose.

Initially, things looked promising for the Knights. At nine minutes left in the 3rd quarter, the Knights held strong for 3 downs on a goal-line stand. On 4th down however, Inderkum RB Thurman found the end zone on a one yard dive over the left side of the line. Knights DB Seth McCoy intercepted the conversion attempt, which left the score 26-14 Inderkum.

If you’re a Knights fan, what followed wasn’t pretty. Inderkum took control and literally ran away with the game.

At 5:35 to play in the 3rd, Inderkum partially blocked a punt giving them the ball on the Knights 42. On the very next play, The Tigers’ Larry Hardy ran it in for a 42 yard touchdown. One minute later, The Knights had a particularly ugly series where they were penalized for holding, then fumbled a snap, then QB Burdan tossed an interception to Hardy. Another minute later, Thurman scored again for the Tigers and Ivan Prevost scored the 2-pt conversion.

The teams traded touchdowns to end the 3rd, with Burdan scoring on a 60 yard run for the Knights, and Jimmie Johnson scoring for the Tigers.

The 3rd quarter ended 48-21 in favor of Inderkum. The tigers scored four touchdowns in the third and didn’t look back. They had all the momentum, the Knights defense was flat, on their heels, and looking defeated.

Inderkum would close out the game by scoring twice more, once by Hardy and once more by Johnson. Rio Linda never got off the mat after the 3rd quarter barrage.

Final Score: Inderkum 62, Rio Linda 21.

The Inderkum defense held Marcel Brown to just 77 yards and no touchdowns, and they held the Rio Linda offense (which had scored a total of 141 points in the last 2 games) to just 21 points.
With this win the Tigers take an 8-1 record into the final game of the season against Pioneer (Woodland) as the presumptive TCC Champions.

Rio Linda sits at 7-2, and will travel to face River City in the TCC finale.


  • Officials ran the clock at 7 minutes left in the 4th
  • Inderkum’s Austin Thurman and Larry Hardy combined for 7 touchdowns
  • Inderkum Head Coach Terry Stark earns his 100th win at Inderkum

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