City High Football – A Season in Review


Natalie Green

2019 City High Varsity Football Team

Aaron Stalkfleet , Reporter

City High Football Record: 2-7


8/30 – 23-20 L @ Liberty 

9/6 – 52-7 L Cedar Falls

9/13 – 28-25 W @ Ames (Battle for the Little Cy-Hawk)

9/20 – 49-13 L @ Hempstead

9/27 – 10-7 W Muscatine

10/3 – 43-19 L @ Davenport North

1011 – 38-14 L @ Pleasant Valley 

10/18 – 62-14 L Linn-Mar

10/25 – 36-32 L West High (Battle for the Boot)


Little Hawk 2019 Season Stat Leaders


JR Raph Hamilton QB: 53/116 (45.7%)  766 passing yards (14.5 yds/comp) 4INT:4TDs  Longest of 30 yards QBR 105.6



SR Tonka Hickman RB: 189 rush attempts for 883 yards (4.7 yds/rush) 12 TDs 

Longest of 28 yards *883 rushing yards good for 14th best in 4A Football 



SO Gable Mitchell WR: 20 rec for 249 yards (12.5 yds/catch)  2 TDs Longest of 30 yards 



SO Gable Mitchell FS: 39 solo tackles    8.0 tackle assists 47 total tackles 


Fumble Recoveries:

SR Jackson Ernst OLB: 1 FR 

SR Denaro Smith DE: 1 FR

SR Josh Honson OLB: 1 FR

SO Aaron Stalkfleet OLB: 1 FR 



SO Gable Mitchell FS: 2 INTs


A Season in Review

A roller coaster season for the Little Hawks started off with a road game against Liberty, a game most would say they probably should have won. It was a weird game where City High would control most of the first 3 quarters, while Liberty would fight back late in the game and ultimately end up on top. Coming back home, the Little Hawks faced what would probably be their toughest task of the season; a showdown with Cedar Falls. The final score of 52-7 really didn’t reflect the performance of the Little Hawks, however, as they were in the game for most of the 1st quarter before things would start to get away in the 2nd. Unfortunately, it would be downhill from there. Starting the season 0-2, the Little Hawks knew they needed to bounce back and beat the Little Cyclones of Ames. It was a big game to say the least, and a game that was pretty back and forth. A game where the Little Hawks would narrowly escape with a 3 point win of 28-25. After the game, the Little Hawks were featured on ESPN’s College Gameday.

With a win on the road, the Little Hawks would stay on the road with a showdown vs. Dubuque Hempstead. Feeling better about themselves, although still at a 1-2 clip, the Little Hawks played what would probably be their worst performance of the season. The game had the feel that it was over after the first quarter, and the Little Hawks never responded, ultimately losing 49-13. The team regrouped after a 1-3 start and knew they had a very realistic shot at beating Muscatine on Homecoming. However, they would have their hands full with Muscatine’s running back, Tim Nimely, one of the conference’s best rushers. Throughout the season, the Little Hawks struggled to make tackles and many thought that would continue against Tim Nimely. It was just the opposite however, as the Little Hawks shut him [Tim Nimely] down for most of the night. A night of pouring rain leading to sloppy field conditions, the Little Hawks would escape with a low scoring 10-7 win on Homecoming.

Now at the halfway point of the season, the Little Hawks sat at 2-3; with a chance to still make the playoffs, the Little Hawks went back on the road for two games. They would first play Davenport North. It was a game that had the scores of 22-12 and 22-19 in favor of North, the Little Hawks were in this game. Unfortunately, Davenport North and senior QB Jack West would prove to be too much as North would escape with a 43-19 win. Still on the road, the Little Hawks would travel to Pleasant Valley. Pleasant Valley is a team that runs the triple-option, and the Little Hawks knew they had a tough task ahead of them. For about the first quarter, the game had the feel of a blowout and although the final score of 38-14 would support that, the Little Hawks played better football in quarters 2-4 doing a better job stopping the triple-option. Unfortunately, it was too little too late for the Little Hawks as they had dug themselves in too deep of a hole.

Now sitting at 2-5 with two games to go, the Little Hawks would return home for two final games starting with Linn-Mar. City High knew this was going to be another tough game as they were facing what could be the best QB they would have faced up to that point in the season, Linn-Mar’s senior, Marcus Orr. It was a game in which the Little Hawks were in for about the first quarter and a half, however, Linn-Mar proved to be too much and went on to win the game by a final score of 62-14. Now with one final game and a disappointing season to say the least, the Little Hawks had one more chance to prove themselves; what better way to do that than against West High in the Battle for the Boot. Coming in, the Little Hawks knew this was a very winnable game. A week leading up to that with quite possibly one of the best weeks of practice the Little Hawks had all season, this was becoming more and more realistic. The game would prove to be very close and back and forth. It was a game where the Little Hawks would give the ball 38 times to (RB) Tonka Hickman ‘20 and even with a couple of (WR) Gable Mitchell ‘22 touchdown catches, it still would not be enough. West would go onto win 36-32. It was yet another heartbreaker for the Little Hawks and a final 2019 season record of 2-7.


Interview with QB Raph Hamilton ’21

LH: If you could grade your performance this season on a 1-10 scale, what would you grade yourself?

Raph Hamilton: I would say probably a 7,  just because I thought I did pretty well for our team but they’re a lot of things I need to improve on.


LH: What are you looking to improve on most for next season?

Raph Hamilton: Working on my mechanics, those need to be a lot more consistent. Along with getting our team completion percentage up. 


LH: What are some goals you have for this team for next season?

Raph Hamilton: Obviously we want to be state champions and we wanna win our district. One of the goals I have for this team is that I don’t want us to ever lose at Bates Field because we need to protect our home turf. 


LH: What are some personal goals you have for next season?

Raph Hamilton: I want to be an all-district and all-state player next year. I just want to be the best possible version of myself as a football player that I can be.


LH: How can you improve your leadership and how you approach your teammates for next season?

Raph Hamilton: I just want to be a more vocal leader next year. As a senior and as a returning 2 year starter, I think guys are really going to look to me to kind of lead this team so I just wanna really take charge of this team because I think we are capable of doing great things.