BREWSTER – Despite some of the fits and starts that often characterize season-opening games, Oroville’s football team ended three years of frustration with an 18-7 victory at Brewster on Friday, Sept 6.
The Hornets withstood a disastrous first five minutes that included a botched punt attempt and a pass interference penalty that combined to set the Bears up for the opening score on a 1-yard Raf Varelas run.
But the Oroville defense bailed its offense out repeatedly after that, allowing the Bears just 90 yards of total offense. Brewster had the ball inside the Oroville 25-yard line three times, but the Hornet defense came up with big plays on each occasion to end the threats.
Oroville led 12-7 at the half on the strength of a 3-yard Luke Kindred run and a 17-yard pass from Kindred to Tanner Smith, who also led the Hornets with 117 yards rushing on 10 carries.
The Hornets had a chance to salt the game away late in the fourth quarter, but twice had big fourth down plays erased by penalties and gave up the ball at midfield with 2:15 to play.
Ricky Mathis picked off Mitch Boesel’s pass to end the threat and two plays later Smith broke loose for a 49-yard run to give the Hornets some breathing room. Mathis followed up with his second interception in less than a minute of game time to end Brewster’s final drive.
Kindred finished with 53 yards on 4-of-12 passing, with Smith catching all four passes.
Kindred, Smith, Sean DeWitte and Joe Sarmiento led the Hornets’ defensive effort.
The Hornets (1-0) host Mary Walker on Sept. 13.