– Samuel Frick

In New Haven, two NE8 rivals squared off for a crucial conference game. The Leo Lions pulled away with a dominant 35-8 win over the New Haven Bulldogs. The key areas going into the matchup were how would the New Haven defense do against Leo’s power running offense, and how would the passing game fare against Leo’s pass rush. 

The first half was all Leo as the Lions got on the board thanks to two Kaeden Miller runs from 36 and 2 yards out. Leo jumped out to the early 14-0 lead in the 1st, where the Lions had dominated the line of scrimmage. In the 2nd quarter, New Haven started to find some life thanks to the Bulldogs making key adjustments on defense and a couple good drives by Jakar Williams and the offense. 

In the 2nd half, with the Lions still up 14-0, the Lions forced New Haven to punt as the ball came to Kaeden Miller, who makes a couple great moves to the outside and took it to the house for 72 yards. Lions were up 21-0. New Haven wouldn’t go away without a fight as the Bulldogs kept pounding on the Leo secondary, and junior quarterback Jakar Williams forced his way to the end zone on a QB keeper. After a pass to Nick Myles on a 2-point conversion, into was 21-8 Leo going into the final quarter. 

In the end, Leo’s defense sealed the deal thanks to a pick six by Rylan Crawford to give the Lions a 28-8 lead. Landen Livingston, who recovered a fumble in the first quarter, makes a great play to pick off Jakar Williams’s pass. That play set up Kaeden Miller’s 4th TD of the night to route out the scoring.

Kaeden Miller ran for 134 yards and 4 scores. On a side note, Leo kicker Carson McCauley recorded a school record 71 punt. Leo (3-1) will host East Noble (3-1) for a crucial conference game, while New Haven (3-1) will travel to Norwell (3-1).