Story and photo by Kadin Freauff, student reporter.
September 22, 2014
proved that they will never back down. Despite the 49-21 loss against reigning state champions Central Catholic, Oregon City played Pioneer football.
Central Catholic returned five starters on the offensive line the average height of that wall of an offensive line came in at six foot four and weighing in at 269 pounds each. The Oregon City defense took the challenge head on and handled it very well.
Central Catholic started the game with the ball and wasted no time. Junior wideout JJ Wells took the read option draw and took it to the house from 47 yards out. Central Catholic was up 7-0 early on in the first quarter.
Oregon City's offense had a solid balanced attack early on and made some great plays passing and pounding the ball on the ground. On the other side of the ball the Pioneer defense held the Rams to just 14 points in the first quarter.
Later on in the first quarter, Rams senior quarterback Sean Dack took the read option himself and found the endzone from 12 yards.
At the end of the first quarter, Central Catholic led 14-0.
Early on in the second quarter, Central Catholic established the run game. Senior running back and highly recruited Cameron Scarlett followed the wall of his offensive line into the endzone from a couple yards out.
Central Catholic rotated at least three to five running backs throughout the whole night.
With a couple minutes left in the first half junior tailback and linebacker Ronnie Rust almost took the whole Pioneer defense with him into the endzone. One by one Rust missed and shredded his way through the tough Oregon City defense from 13 yards out.
Central Catholic extended the lead to 35-0 by the time it was halftime.
Oregon City came out firing on all cylinders to start the second half.
Senior quarterback Thomas Hamilton put the Pioneer's offense on his back. The offense put together the perfect drive to open up the second half, as they marched down the field by pounding the ground with junior running back Connor Mitchell and setting up big passing plays for Hamilton in which he executed perfectly.
Hamilton found the endzone from 15 yards out by dropping a dime of a pass to a wide open junior wide receiver Sam Maughn.
Oregon City was now on the board; the scoreboard early on in the third quarter read Central Catholic 35 - Oregon City 7.
The Pioneers defense did some damage of their own by forcing Central Catholic to fumble on the ensuing possession.
The Pioneers were not able to get much going on the next possession after the fumble recovery. Central Catholic meanwhile kept finding the endzone.
Junior quarterback Carson Spitznagel found Xavier Hallinan in the back of the endzone to put the Rams up 42-7.
The Pioneers would not stop fighting. Hamilton rolled to his left and as he got drilled he threw a perfect ball to a jumping Trevon Bradford from nine yards out.
Central Catholic would score one more touchdown off a 16 yard run from junior Matt Nwerem.
Then on the ensuing kickoff after the Nwerem touchdown, Bradford proved yet again why he is one of the most dynamic play makers in the state of Oregon. Bradford awaited yet another booming kick, he waited patiently for his blocks to set up and looked for a hole. Bradford took the kickoff return 96 yards for the score.
The final score from Hillsboro Stadium. Central Catholic 49 - Oregon City 21.
The game was much more than what the scoreboard read.
Thomas Hamilton had a solid night passing the ball for the Pioneers. Hamilton finished, 13-23 for 189 yards to go along with his two touchdown passes and just one interception.
Connor Mitchell had a solid game running the ball. Mitchell finished with 23 carries for 112 yards.
After the game senior offensive and defensive tackle Chris Mengis talked about what the Pioneers can take away from this game. "We can play with anyone when we put our mind to it and stick together," Mengis said. "If we could play them again, we could get that win."
Junior starting linebacker Kiahve Dennis-Lee said. "I definitely feel like our defense stepped it up this week, we worked hard all week and came out tough," Dennis-Lee said. " Hopefully we see them again."
Photos by Kadin Freauff, student.
Photos by Christy Parrish, OCHS Band Boosters.
Photos by Meaghan Preston, student.
Photos by Teresa Parker, OCHS GridIron.