By Bruce Sayler
Head coach Don Peoples Jr. was direct about Butte Central’s lopsided homecoming football game loss to Corvallis Friday night.
“We’re very disappointed in our performance,” he said after the Maroons suffered a 53-0 beating at the hands of the Blue Devils on Montana Tech’s Bob Green Field. “Corvallis is a big, physical football team and we didn’t respond at all.
“We did have sophomores and freshmen out there tonight playing and it was challenging for them to be out there against a big, physical team.”
The notation was that not all positions were filled in such manner. The more experienced BC players received the bulk of the field time. Butte Central was missing four starters, including free safety Keefer McGree and two-way starters Tanner Keith, Jake Tauscher and Aidan Ossello. McGree and Tauscher are both out for the rest of the season, Peoples said, because of neck and shoulder injuries, respectively. Keith had an illness and Ossello was sidelined because of a concussion.
Younger players saw more time because of the injured players’ absences.
“We just have to keep fighting,” Peoples said. “I know our players and our coaches will keep trying and working to get better as a team.”
Punt returner Gideon Boswell ran back consecutive kicks for Corvallis to break the Western A Conference high school game open, and defensive back Bennett Boelman all but sealed the victory with a third-quarter pick-six.
Fielding, perhaps, their best team during their stay in Class A, the undefeated Blue Devils dominated from the early parts.
Corvallis was both grinding and explosive on offense, and nearly impenetrable on defense. The Blue Devils held the Maroons to five yards on the ground and kept them out of the end zone. BC trips past the 50-yard line were rare.
Corvallis drove 71 yards to pay dirt on the first possession of the game. Quarterback Aydan Mayn finished the drive with a 7-yard flip to tight end Hunter Loesch.
Butte Central punted away its first possession, but got the ball back when cornerback Jack Keeley forced a fumble Maroon defensive end Zane Moodry recovered on the BC 42-yard line. Again, the Corvallis defense held its ground and Moodry punted away. Boswell fielded the one-hopper at his own 16-yard line, then raced down the West sideline behind a wall of blockers to the end zone.
The next series was too similar for the Maroons. The possession lost a yard on three plays and a false-start penalty. Again, they punted. Again, Boswell received and repeated, using the West sideline wall of blockers for a route to the end zone on a 53-yard TD runback. The Blue Devils took a 21-0 lead into the second quarter.
Keeley nearly completed a pass to Moodry at the goal line on BC’s next possession. It was a fourth-down attempt and Boswell broke up the pass play. Corvallis took over on offense launched a march from its own 22-yard line. Logan Avery carried the ball 11 yards into the end zone seven plays later. Just before halftime, Mayn flicked a shovel pass to Solomon Morgan that was good for a 49-yard gain and set up the quarterback’s 2-yard sneak into the end zone for a 34-0 Blue Devil command at halftime.
Butte Central drove to the Corvallis 36 on its next series, but Keeley was sacked by Justus Brickley for a 10-yard loss one play before the end of the half.
Keeley was crowned king and Ali Stajcar was chosen queen during the homecoming halftime festivities.
The Maroons had first possession in the second half, but gave it up on Boelman’s second-down interception he took 24 yards for the touchdown. The Blue Devils led 41-0 and the clock was running on the 35-point difference rule.
Touchdown carries by Levi Reynoso and backup quarterback Reese Tucker ended Corvallis TD drives as the Blue Devils ran out most of the remaining clock.
“Corvallis is a good team,” Peoples credited. “They’re big, physical and you can tell they’ve been in the weight room.”
The win lifted the Blue Devils to 4-0 this season. Butte Central fell to 0-4 and will play at Browning next Friday.
Corvallis 21 13 13 6 – 53
Butte Central 0 0 0 0 — 0
COR – Hunter Loesch 7 pass from Aydan Mayn (James Nordenstrom kick), 8:32. Drive – 71 yards in 9 plays. Key play – Gideon Stoker 17-yard pass from Mayn to Butte Central 18-yard line.
COR – Gideon Boswell 84 punt return (Nordenstrom kick), 4:50. Drive – none. Key play – Scoring play.
COR – Boswell 53 punt return (Nordenstrom kick), 3:33. Drive – none. Key play – Scoring play.
COR – Logan Avery 11 run (Nordenstrom kick), 9:44. Drive – 78 yards in 7 plays. Key play – Boswell 24-yard pass from Mayn to Butte Central 21-yard line.
COR – Mayn 2 run (kick failed), 2:09. Drive – 57 yards in 4 plays. Key play – Solomon Morgan 49-yard pass from Mayn to Butte Central 13-yard line.
COR – Bennett Boelman 24 pass interception return (Nordenstrom kick), 10:56. Drive – none. Key play – Scoring play.
COR – Levi Reynoso 6 run (run failed), 1:15. Drive – 41 yards in 5 plays. Key play – L. Reynoso 11-yard run to Butte Central 6-yard line.
COR – Reese Tucker 1 run (kick blocked), 8:47. Drive – 37 yards on 5 plays. Key play – Justus Brickey recovered Butte Central fumble on Butte Central 37-yard line.
First downs 15 7
Rushes-yards 30-186 19-5
Passes 6-9-0 10-31-1
Passing yards 115 104
Total offense 301 109
Return yards 164 0
Punts-avg. 1-31.0 6-32.8
Fumbles-lost 2-1 3-1
Penalties-yards 6-65 7-70
RUSHING – Corvallis, Logan Avery 11-91, Aydan Mayn 5-28, Levi Reynoso 3-24, Russell Reynoso 3-22, Ayden Spencer 1-13, Solomon Morgan 3-4, Reese Tucker 1-1, Caleb Johansen 1-1, Team 2-(-2). Butte Central, Justus McGee 9-13, Jack Keeley 9-3, Team 1-(-11).
PASSING – Corvallis, Mayn 6-9-0-115. Butte Central, Keeley 10-30-1-104, Zane Moodry 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING – Corvallis, Morgan 1-49, Dillen Potter 2-31, Gideon Stoker 1-17, Gideon Boswell 1-11, Hunter Loesch 1-7. Butte Central, Moodry 6-81, McGee 3-17, Ryan Peoples 1-6.
TURNOVERS: Pass interceptions – Corvallis 1 (Bennett Boelman), Butte Central 0. Fumble recoveries – Corvallis 1 (Justus Brickey), Butte Central 1 (Moodry).