The Blazers were outmaneuvered on offense but managed to improve their defense in the second half
On Friday, Sept. 29, the Blair Blazers (2-3) lost to the Quince Orchard Cougars (5-0), the defending state champions, in a one-sided duel ending in 0-41. Blair hoped to come back from their loss last week to the Einstein Titans while Quince Orchard hoped to maintain their one-year-long winning streak.
The Cougars started with the ball and went straight to work, getting two crucial pass completions and a 14-yard run. Consequently, during the 8th minute, Quince Orchard got their first touchdown from a 33-yard run and converted, making the score 0-7. On offense, the Blazers struggled to break through the Quince Orchard defense and couldn’t manage to gain a single yard in four downs.
With the ball going back to Quince Orchard on the 45-yard line, the Blazers focused on defending the passing game. Unfortunately for the Blazers, the Cougars could not be stopped as they got a first-down conversion from a pass to lead them to the 15-yard line. Eventually, during the 5th minute, Quince Orchard added to their exceptional start with a 23-yard touchdown from senior tight end Christian Britt. With the kick, the score sat at 0-14.
The Blazers, still scoreless with three minutes left in the first quarter, seemed to improve on offense, as they were finally able to gain their first yard of the game with a one-yard run from sophomore running back Junior Rodrigez. However, back-to-back tackles for losses and a sack on senior quarterback and captain Quinn Stofa plagued the Blazers, leaving them to punt in the 2nd minute on 4th and 19.
The Blazers also managed to deflect the ball but were unable to come away with the interception. The Cougars capitalized on this mistake and scored a 19-yard rushing touchdown.
Blair eventually improved their offense as Stofa rushed seven yards on first down, and eventually passed to Rodriguez for their first second-down conversion of the game to end the first quarter.
To start the second, Blair began to utilize Stofa for more quarterback sneaks. Though their first attempt didn’t gain any yards, Blair managed to get their second first down after a timeout in the 11th minute via a QB sneak from Stofa. Unfortunately, he was sacked on third down forcing Blair to punt once again.
Following an out-of-bounds punt, the Cougars’ decision to run a quarterback sneak only led to a two-yard gain. However, while on Blair’s 39-yard line, Quince Orchard got a first down from a 5-yard run and then scored a 34-yard passing touchdown. It was the fourth consecutive drive leading to a touchdown by the Cougars. They also converted their kick.
Blair’s further attempts at quarterback sneaks were unsuccessful. The Cougars’ offense remained hot with a 20-yard completion to junior wide receiver Josiah Teasley. A great run by junior running back Iverson Howard put the Cougars at the goal line with two minutes remaining in the half.
Quince Orchard then used this opportunity to fake Blair's defense onto the right side of the endzone, leading to an easy touchdown to make the score 0-35 at the end of the first half.
The beginning of the second half started with Blair on their own 27-yard line, seeking to improve from the offensive rabbit hole they were stuck in from the first half.
The Cougars managed to score another touchdown, but the Blazers’ defense significantly improved in the second half as they kept Quince Orchard to just that one throughout the second half.
Blair will face Walter Johnson next away on Friday, Oct. 6 at 7 PM. Tickets can be found here.
Mooti Chimdi. Hi I'm Mooti (he/him). Besides writing for SCO, I like to eat and go for walks. More »