OROVILLE A 40-yard field goal by Dustin Nigg in the final seconds lifted Oroville to a 30-27 victory over Liberty Bell on Oct. 11.
“When the kick went up I knew it was good,” Oroville coach Tam Hutchinson said. “Tough game, exciting win.”
“The Oroville game was a tough one,” Liberty Bell coach Sy Bannick said. “We knew coming in that they would be a well-coached team and had good athletes. We also knew that we needed to play solid football from the first whistle to the last.
“But we came out flat in the first quarter and dug ourselves into a 20-0 hole.”
Dustin Nigg returned the kickoff to the 42 to set up Oroville quarterback Luke Kindred, who scored on the first play from scrimmage on a 58-yard run. Nigg kicked the extra point.
On its first series, Liberty Bell went three-and-out, punting from its 15.
Kindred, on first down after the punt, ran left for a 48-yard touchdown. Nigg made the extra point kick for a 14-0 lead with 9:40 left in the first quarter.
On the first down of the second quarter, Kindred (2-4, 42) threw a 39-yard touchdown pass to Connelly Quick. The extra-point kick was blocked.
Liberty Bell could not get much going early, partly due to losing speedy, two-time all-league tailback Austin Watson.
Watson had been trying to get healthy after suffering back spasms during a workout program, Bannick said.
“He could not quite get back to full strength,” the coach said. “We pulled him early in the first quarter because we could tell he just wasn’t healthy enough to play. It really took away our run game.”
The Mountain Lions went to the air to fight back, capping a 78-yard drive with Chip Jones (24-35-2, 364, 3TDs) passing three yards to Milo Holston (10-207, 2 TDs) to cut the lead at the half to 20-7.
The Mountain Lions crept closer to the lead, 20-14, with Holston catching in stride a throw by Jones before finishing off a 57-yard touchdown with 10:45 left in the third quarter. The extra-point kick by Jorge Lara was good.
“Liberty Bell and their passing attack was very impressive,” Hutchinson said. “It’s been a few years since I’ve seen a team execute as well as they did. Their quarterback, Jones, did an outstanding job, and Holston had some great receptions.”
Lara scored on a 12-yard run before Kindred ran up the middle to block the extra-point kick and leave the score tied, 20-20 with 4:03 left in the third.
Oroville scored early in the fourth quarter when Kindred (16-147) ran 21 yards on a keeper. Nigg’s extra-point kick was good.
Jones dived between three Hornet defenders to score on a 6-yard run with 5:40 remaining. Lara’s kick knotted the game 27-27.
After Liberty Bell’s defense stopped Oroville, the Mountains Lions used two plays to move to Oroville’s 36.
The game swung to Oroville when Jones passed to Chase Kurtz, who leaped high only to have the ball knocked away by Quick.
Lane Tietje jumped on the loose ball at the 32 with 1:57 remaining.
Seven plays later Oroville was at the right hash on the 20 with seven seconds on the clock.
Oroville called time out, with Hutchinson having a play in mind.
“But the boys when I got there started saying ‘let D’ kick it, he can make it,” Hutchinson said. “I knew he had the leg to get it that far, because he has made them from further out in practice.”
Nigg said after the game he knew he could make the kick, since he’s made 48-yarders in practice.
The coach said the junior free safety and running back was upset because he felt responsible for some of Liberty Bell’s passing touchdowns.
“So when he said ‘I can do it,” I knew he needed the chance to make up for it,” Hutchinson said. “I wasn’t worried about his kick, but if he would have the time.”
The holder was at the 30, Oroville statistician Steve Quick said, before Nigg drilled the winner and pandemonium erupted on the Hornet sidelines.
Kindred had a first-half interception and Logan Mills recovered a fumble for Oroville.
“We showed great resilience with the comeback we made, but in the end we turned the ball over too many times to really put ourselves in a position to pull off the comeback victory,” Bannick said.
“You just can’t put the ball on the ground against a good team and expect to come out with a win.”
Nigg intercepted a “Hail Mary” pass by Jones on the final play of the game.
For Liberty Bell, Cesar Dominguez forced a fumble and recovered it.
Other Hornet rushers included Tanner Smith (16-94), Sean DeWitt (15-90) and Nigg (4-4).
Oroville (4-1 overall, 2-1 league) is at Lake Roosevelt (3-3, 0-2) on Friday, Oct. 18.
Liberty Bell (2-1, 2-1) has a bye week.
The Hornets are in a three-way tie for second place in the Central Washington 2B League with Kittitas and Liberty Bell.
White Swan (4-1, 2-0) is the league leader.
CURLEW – Curlew earned its first victory of the season 64-6 over winless Northport during homecoming Oct. 11.
“I thought our guys played a good physical game and executed our offense well,” Curlew coach Dave DeVoe said. “I think Northport should be commended. They never gave up and fought hard to the end, especially Ben Short.”
The Cougars sprung fast with Chance Wheaton returning the kickoff 60 yards. Daniel Tresham ran for a two-point conversion for an 8-0 lead.
By halftime, Wheaton ran for additional scores of 15 and 52 yards. A running clock was used for the final three quarters after the Cougars had a 45-plus point lead.
Curlew stayed mainly on the ground with Gunner Brown scoring on runs of 10 and 50 yards, Jerad Hastings on a 7-yard run and big Kolten Fanning on an 8-yard run.
Kyle Engebretson threw touchdown passes of 7 yards to Mathan Knapp and 27 yards to Hunter Beedle.
Neither side sported big rosters for the eight-man game.
Curlew’s roster included 16 players, two being eighth-graders and Fanning as the lone senior.
Fanning and Molly Reynolds were named at halftime the homecoming king and queen.
Gunner Brown was named prince and Natalie Miller princess.
Other royalty included senior Cole Chamberlin, juniors Kayleona Fanning and Hunter Beedle, sophomore Jamiee Keenan and freshmen Taleigh Bockman and Wyatt Stoddard.
Northport, which scored on a 30-yard run by Short in the third quarter, brought 11 players, including two eighth-graders and two seniors.
Curlew (1-5 overall, 1-4 league) could move up the league standings another notch with a win this Friday when the Cougars host Wellpinit (1-4, 1-3) at 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18.
OMAK – Brewster picked up a rare victory over Omak in a big way, 56-13, on Oct. 11.
“We started out of the gate very fast,” Brewster coach Jake Johanson said. “We were able to hit some big plays that we haven’t been able to get this year. This was a big win for our kids and everyone was able to get involved.”
Raf Varelas (14-140) rushed for 3 scores for the Bears, which last beat the Pioneers 28-3 on Oct. 5, 2007.
Hayden Bayha (12-208) scored a touchdown.
“Our ‘O’ line did a great job of blocking and creating holes for our backs,” Johanson said. “Both Bayha and Varelas ran tough all night.”
Other rushers included Oscar Roa (3-15), Cade Smith (1-22) and Ed Ambriz (1-5).
Mitch Boesel completed 10 of 16 passes for 156 yards, 2 touchdowns and no interceptions. He ran twice, once for a 1-yard touchdown.
Smith finished with 4 receptions, 103 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Other receivers were Cameron Jacobsen (3-35), Raul Olvera (2-16) and Bayha (1-3).
“Defensively, we gave up some big plays early on, but found a way to stop them and rally to the ball,” said Johanson. “We won the turnover battle tonight, which was big for us and we were able to get scores off those turnovers.”
Adrian Urias and Luis Garcia forced fumbles. Jacobsen picked up a fumble and ran 30 yards for a score. Gene Orozco recovered the other fumble.
Chris Varelas and Olvera led the team with 7 tackles each. Raf Varelas, Orozco and Raf Varelas each had 6 tackles. Hunter Riggan and Hunter Bach had 5 tackles each.
The Chronicle was unable to reach Omak coach Nick Sack for scoring, which ncluded two touchdowns and a field goal.
No. 8 state-ranked Cashmere (4-1 overall, 3-0 league) is at Brewster (3-3, 2-2) and Omak (0-6, 0-4) is at Chelan (2-3, 1-2) on Friday, Oct. 18.
CASHMERE – Okanogan may still be spitting “pitts” as in Cashmere fullback Rex Pittsinger after he rushed for 222 yards and 4 touchdowns in a 49-14 win between league unbeatens Oct. 11.
“Cashmere played well and executed their run game very effectively,” said Okanogan coach Erick Judd, whose team is 5-1 overall, 3-1 league. “We threw 4 interceptions, which Cashmere turned into touchdowns.
“We have to get over this fast and get ready for Cascade (4-2, 3-1),” Judd said of the homecoming game Friday, Oct. 18.
A tailgate party with hotdogs and hamburgers runs 5:30 p.m. until kickoff at 7 p.m.
Okanogan trailed 28-7 at the half, with its lone score by Justin Rivas (11-(-1)) on a 5-yard run. Arturo Ramos kicked the extra point.
Okanogan’s Tyler Morris (7-46) ran two yards for the final score of the game. Ramos kicked the extra point.
Also rushing for Okanogan were Ramos (3-35) and Morgan Poulin (8-26).
Rivas was 7-of-13 passing for 113 yards and the 4 interceptions.
Receivers included Jason Perez (1-9), Justin VanderWeide (3-56), Fabian Rodriquez (1-31) and Ramos (2-17).
PESHASTIN – A road-weary Tonasket squad fell, 40-10, to Cascade on Oct. 11.
Michael Orozco led the Tigers in its fourth-straight road. He rushed 23 times for 63 yards and scored on a 12-yard run in the first quarter.
Derek Sund booted a 38-yard field goal to end the half with Tonasket trailing, 21-10.
“We played with great effort,” Tonasket coach Jay Hawkins said. “We were able to make some big plays with our offense and defense in the first half.
“For the first 40 minutes we played as good as we have played all year. I think we got tired of chasing No. 3 around.”
No. 3 was Cascade’s Dennis Merritt, who ran for 327 yards – nine short of the school record – and 3 touchdowns.
Also for Tonasket, Collin Aitcheson rushed 6 times for 40 yards, Trevor Terris completed 8-of-16 passes for 132 yards, Sund caught 3 passes for 62 yards and Roberto Juarez had 2 catches for 63 yards.
Quincy (2-4 overall, 2-2 league) is at Tonasket (2-4, 0-4) for homecoming Friday, Oct. 18.
SELKIRK – Republic remained undefeated in the Northeast 1B League by pounding Selkirk, 52-18, on Oct. 11.
Aaron Fritts scored on runs of 3, 2, 1 and 18 yards to lead the Tigers, who led 46-12 at the half.
Fritts also passed for four scores – 40 and 43 yards to Alex Rivera, 50 yards to Remington Wieseler and 50 yards to Garrett Weller.
No. 9 state-ranked Republic (4-2, 4-0) is at Waterville (0-6) for a non-league game at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18.
WILBUR – No. 3 state-ranked Wilbur-Creston took an early lead and never looked back in topping Pateros, 82-50, in a Northeast 1B League southern division game Oct. 11.
Pateros (3-3, 2-2) found success through the air.
Mikey Piechalski tossed 4 scores (60, 25, 7 and 60 yards) to Carlos Ceniceros, who also returned a kickoff 79 yards for six.
Jorge Caballero caught a 47-yard pass to score and ran 15 yards for another touchdown.
Pateros, tied for third in the league with Almira/Coulee-Hartline, will be seeking revenge at Entiat (4-2, 1-2) at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18. The Tigers beat Pateros, 56-34, in a non-league game Sept. 13.
WELLPINIT – Columbia-Inchelium remained undefeated in the Northeast 1B League with a 64-44 win over Wellpinit on Oct. 11.
The Timberwolves, winners of their last three games, trailed 30-28 after three quarters before erupting for a 36-14 fourth-quarter advantage.
Thomas Cohen scored on runs of 10 and 11 yards. He also caught a pass from Quenton Holford.
In the fourth quarter, Edward Stensgar played large. He scored on runs of 6 and 8 yards, caught a 21-yard pass from Cohen and sealed the victory with a 47-yard interception return.
Holford scored in the final period on a 10-yard run.
Jason Holt scored three touchdowns on the ground for Wellpinit (1-5 overall, 1-3 league).
Cusick (3-2, 2-1) is at the No. 6 state-ranked Timberwolves (5-1, 3-0) for a 3:15 p.m. game Friday, Oct. 18, at Inchelium.
MANSON – Manson scored late and made it hold up in a 25-24 victory over Lake Roosevelt on Oct. 11.
“For the most part, we had trouble stopping their inside runs,” Lake Roosevelt coach Steve Files said. “We have to be more physical up front and get off blocks.”
The Raiders’ Austin Rosenbaum (8-(minus-19)), who missed the last couple games with a concussion, ran for a 9-yard score to tie the game in the first quarter, 7-7.
The Raiders trailed, 19-17, at the half after Josh Harris scored on a 34-yard pass from Rosenbaum (2-3-1, 59) and Bryson Whalawitsa kicked a 35-yard field goal.
Josiah Desautel (11-148) scored on a 41-yard run to put the Raiders up 24-19 after the third quarter.
“We had two costly turnovers in the second half that really hurt us,” Files said. “Pass protection broke down at times and we had a dropped pass on what looked like a sure touchdown.
Other rushers for the Raiders, which finished with 266 yards on 44 carries, included Jesse Louie (10-20), Kyle Holt (10-71) and Harris (2-11).
The Trojans won on a screen pass in the fourth quarter. A two-point conversion failed.
Defensively, Jake Palmer had 10 tackles, 2 for losses.
Oroville (4-1 overall, 2-1 league) is at Lake Roosevelt (3-3, 0-2) for the Raiders homecoming Friday, Oct. 18.
KETTLE FALLS – Kettle Falls’ defense proved nearly undentable in beating Bridgeport, 26-7, in a non-league game Oct. 11.
Bridgeport’s Christian Lopez scored on a 34-yard pass from Bailey Morris-Evenson in the second quarter.
Kittitas (2-3, 2-1) is at Bridgeport (0-7, 0-2) for the Mustangs homecoming Oct. 18.