The Union football team did the best thing it could do entering last Friday night’s Mid-State 38 Conference-Delaware Division clash at Franklin.
That was to forget about the week before and concentrate on the task at hand.
Even when the home team came back with a touchdown and two-point conversion to tie the game in the fourth quarter, Union kept its cool and remained focus.
The Farmers then took the lead again and prevented the Warriors from scoring during their final two possessions.
An eventual 34-28 victory evened the team’s overall and division records at 1-1 and gave a young and inexperienced Farmers team that much more confidence going into tomorrow night’s home-opener.
It was a 75-yard kickoff return late in the fourth quarter by senior Zaire Adams that snapped a 28-28 tie after Franklin scored on a 45-yard pass and then ran the ball in for the tying points.
“He caught it (the kickoff) clean, got to his protection, made one quick cut and then turned on the burners,” said Union second-year head coach Lou Grasso, Jr.
Union also scored touchdowns in the first three quarters. First-year junior quarterback Tahweid Easterling completed a touchdown pass to senior Justice Stewart in the first quarter and then ran for scores in the second and third quarters.
“This was only his second start in a game as a quarterback, ever,” Grasso said. “He’s learning on the job. He’s very athletic and has a sponge for knowledge, he doesn’t seem to get rattled.”
Senior running back Maurice Francis also ran for a score in the third quarter.
“It was a big win just for the growth of our kids,” Grasso said. “They learned what it felt like to be successful.”
Union hosts Bridgewater-Raritan tomorrow night at 7.
Union opened with a 48-6 loss at Phillipsburg.
Grasso on Bridgewater-Raritan: “They’re always well-coached and always a tough team to play. They beat us last year in our opener.”
Union opened last season with a 27-13 setback at Bridgewater-Raritan.
“It’s a tough task,” Grasso said. “They have a tough group of kids that play hard. We have to keep progressing and playing better.”