Orion football chalks up first win

Mindy Carls
Orion’s Josh Fair brings down the Monmouth-Roseville quarterback late in the game on Thursday, April 1, in Monmouth. Also closing in on the quarterback are Zack Riddell (74) and Jayson Johnson (72).
Orion’s Coby Schultz, front, goes down at the end of an 18-yard run early in the third quarter of a 13-8 win over Monmouth-Roseville on Thursday, April 1, at Sunny Lane Field, Monmouth.

The suspense built throughout the game, but Orion finally secured its first win of the spring 2021 football season.

Orion defeated Monmouth-Roseville 13-8 on Thursday, April 1, at Sunny Lane Field, Monmouth.

The Chargers received the opening kickoff for the first time in three games. Coach Chip Filler likes to score first and put pressure on the opponent to keep up.

It turned out Orion did not score, but they held the ball for nine plays, picked up two first downs and reached Mon-Rose territory before punting.

Mon-Rose drove to the Orion 15 before the Charger defense forced the Titans to turn the ball over on downs. The key play was Jayson Johnson’s sack of the Mon-Rose quarterback, who was dropped six yards deep in the backfield.

Orion’s defense kept pressure on the Mon-Rose quarterback all night long.

After the Chargers had to punt on their next possession, the Titans drove to the Charger 10 only to stall. On fourth-and-goal at the 15, Hayden Lilly, Josh Fair and Zack Riddell sacked the quarterback at the 22.

Orion could get no farther than midfield for the rest of the first half. In the third quarter, the Chargers forced the Titans to punt with 6:05 on the clock. Cole Kratzberg returned the ball to the Charger 30.

Braydi Mascari blocked for Orion quarterback Jared Mohr on a 15-yard run to the Mon-Rose 38. Kratzberg gained two yards to the 36, and on the next snap went all the way to paydirt. He also kicked the extra point.

With 2:10 to go in the third, Orion had its first lead of the season.

Mon-Rose responded with a scoring drive of its own, marching 65 yards and burning five minutes off the clock before scoring on a five-yard pass and then converting on a two-point play for an 8-7 lead.

Orion then proved it could stage a sustained drive of its own, using up about five minutes of clock time while driving 62 yards.

On third-and-1 at the Mon-Rose 29, Coby Schultz moved the sticks with a 10-yard run. The Chargers advanced the ball to the 5-yard line, but two penalties moved the ball back to the 19.

No problem. Mohr hooked up with Quinn Hoftender on a 19-yard pass to give Orion the 13-8 lead with 4:14 to go in the game. Mon-Rose stopped the two-point run short of the end zone.

The Charger defense kept the pressure on the Titan quarterback, whose passes advanced the ball only four yards.

Taking over on downs, Orion ran out the clock.