MORRICE — Entering Friday night’s matchup between Morrice and Mayville, neither team had surrendered a point this season.
Something had to give.
Led by junior quarterback Jonathan Carpenter’s 200 yards rushing and 88 yards passing, the Orioles outlasted Mayville, 20-12.
“That’s probably one of the best teams we’re going to play in the regular season, and it is going to be the biggest team that we see,” Morrice head coach Kendall Crockett said. “We’re not going to see too many teams with four 240-pound plus offensive and defensive linemen … We just moved a pretty darn good team out of the way for a 20-12 win … I know some people are used to us putting up 30 to 40 points, but a win is a win.”
Despite early offensive struggles, the Oriole defense held Mayville scoreless in the first half, forcing three turnovers along with a goal-line stand.
Carpenter finally broke the scoreless tie with nearly 6 minutes remaining in the second quarter, connecting with wide receiver Shane Cole for a 39-yard touchdown. Carpenter followed with a successful two-point conversion, giving the Orioles an 8-0 lead at the half.
Mayville responded with a quick touchdown drive to open the second half. Morrice had an answer, with Carpenter’s 15-yard touchdown run late in the third, making it 14-6 Orioles.
The Wildcats brought it within two points once more, with a 62-yard touchdown run by quarterback Austin Middleton, but Morrice put the game away early in the fourth with Carpenter’s second rushing touchdown of the game, making it 20-12.
Crockett said he was quite impressed with the junior quarterback in just his second start, in addition to the Orioles’ defense.
“It’s nice to see your sophomores and juniors step up and be resilient like what they are, watching Jon run the ball as many times as he did, and he was carrying the load there for us for a while, watching a junior Petyon Smith crack that big number 81 all night long … He’s hitting a kid that’s probably 100 pounds more than him and he’s playing a heck of a game. The resilience of our young players, our sophomores, our juniors, from watching last year’s squad go all the way, here’s where we are. We’re aiming one week at a time, trying to get better one week at a time.”
With just an eight-point lead at halftime, Crockett told his players there’s a reason they run through the tires in practice.
“We have to have the legs in the third and fourth quarter, we have to be ready to keep playing the ballgame,” Crockett said. “Bigger teams are going to wear down. They’re going to punch us in the mouth but what are we going to do? We’ve got to stand there, we got to play football.”
Junior Peyton Smith, who recorded six tackles and an interception, said he had no doubt the Orioles would come out on top.
“We always have that confidence in ourselves that we can win because we go out on the practice field every day and we practice our hearts out,” Smith said. “We go to work, we’re a family and we know we’re going to give everything for this team…We’re going to do everything to win.”
With the win, the defending eight-man Division 1 champion Orioles extended their active win-streak to 15 games. The team will head on the road next week to take on Atherton.
MORRICE 20, MAYVILLE 12
Mayville 0 0 12 0 — 12
Morrice 0 8 6 6 — 20
MOR: Shane Cole 39 pass from Carpenter (Carpenter run), 5:51
MAY: Jeffrey Frost 3 pass from Middleton (run failed), 8:00
MOR: Carpenter 15 run (pass failed), 3:33
MAY: Middleton 62 run (pass failed), 3:21
MOR: Carpenter 12 run (pass failed), 10:55
RUSHING: Morrice — Carpenter 38-200; Wesley 3-4
Mayville — Middleton 17-215; Gilbert 7-30
PASSING: Morrice — Carpenter 5-8-88-0, TD. Mayville — Middleton 6-13-54-3, TD.
RECEIVING: Morrice — Cole 2-46, TD; Wesley r1-28; Jarrett Wood 1-15; Peyton Smith 1-9
Mayville — Gilbert 3-48; Mrock 1-4; Frost 1-3, TD.
DEFENSE: Morrice — Cole 13 tackles, interception; Wesley 12 tackles, interception; Todd Nanasy 7 tackles, one for loss; Peyton Smith 6 tackles, interception.
Records: Morrice 2-0 (0-0); Mayville 1-1 (0-0)