Oak Ridge hammers Lancers, 69-27

By: Jim Stiles, Telegraph Correspondent
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In front of a packed homecoming crowd, the Oak Ridge Trojans got on the throttle early and never let up in a 69-27 victory over Cordova. The dominant offensive line ensured that the Trojan attack, whether by air or ground, had plenty of protection. The Trojans scored at least one touchdown every quarter. In the first they scored three with Nick Barnett starting the game receiving the Cordova kickoff and returning it 90 yards for an electrifying touchdown. The Trojans scored on their next two possessions, first with a 15-yard pass from quarterback Connor Benander to tight end Nick Buerki then again on a 24-yard run from Robbie Beyer. At the end of the first quarter the home team held a solid 21-7 lead. In the second quarter the Trojans put up four touchdowns. Jacob Allen started the scoring with a 10-yard run up the middle before Benander hooked up with Beyer for another score. Barnett returned his second kickoff for a touchdown and Benander and Buerki hooked up a second to, as the Trojans held a commanding 49-19 lead at the break. The Trojans started spreading the workload in the third quarter, as Colby Wilmer scored the team’s first touchdown on a 20-yard run up the middle of the Cordova defense. Benander had a fantastic night, completing 11-of-13 passes for 181 yards and four scores. He even ran for a touchdown in the third quarter before Will Tostenson relieved him with the game already decided. With a dominating 62-19 lead going into the fourth quarter, Oak Ridge focused on clock management, relentlessly running the ball at the Lancer defense. Wilmer pounded the ball up the middle, at times dragging defenders. The efforts paid off with an 11-yard run into the end zone for the last Trojan score of the night. Defensively, the home team looked good but missed tackles by special teams provided the Lancers with long kick and punt returns and good field position to begin their drives. Senior Cordova running back, Michael Lindsey found holes and sliced through the Trojan defense for 168 yards and three touchdowns, mostly during the first half. However, despite the best Cordova efforts, the Trojans were simply too effective for them. The credit goes to offensive line. “I’m very happy with our offense,” Oak Ridge coach Eric Cavaliere said. “The line really took care of business and they are the guys that get it done every week. We dominated the possession and it’s hard for the other team to score if they don’t have the ball.” JV wins in a rout, 34-0 The scoring started with the first play of the second quarter when Dylan Collie caught a screen pass from Frank Trifeletti, crossed the field and raced down the sideline into the end zone. Maybe it was the inspiration from having big brother and Indianapolis Colt Austin Collie on the sideline, but Dylan later added numerous tackles and two more touchdown catches to complete his hat trick for the game. Tight end Trent Stigerts and Jake Rosada each added a score of their own. Stigerts caught five-yard toss and Rosada took a handoff up the middle before breaking to the outside on a 30-yard scamper. Despite the scoring frenzy it was the Trojan defense that really stood out. The Cordova quarterback was rushed or pressured on nearly every down, especially in the second half. “We gave our defense the game ball tonight,” Oak Ridge coach Aaron Brackney said. “They were key, but what really stood out the most was the way the whole team supported each other through the whole game. That energy makes things happen.”