Freshman football keeps win streak alive with 28-22 win over Byron Center

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Owen Meyer, Sports Reporter

The freshman football team went up against Byron Center Bulldogs on Thursday, where the Rangers ended up securing the win with a score of 28-22. Freshman Drew Fortino, being a huge impact player for the Rangers, made multiple big plays and a 20 yard catch at the end of the half; unfortunately for the boys, they couldn’t get the snap off as the time ran out.  The Rangers dominated the line on offense and on defense, making fundamental tackles and precise throws and blocks to keep moving the chains and wearing out the Bulldog defense. In the first half, the Rangers pushed through the Bulldogs defense with ease, making it look easy. The offensive line hit their blocks and made the right calls, burying the Byron Center line into the ground.

Offensive tackle freshman Joey Wing played a great game, making plays on offense and defense. On the first possession on offense in the 2nd quarter, freshman quarterback Mason McDonald on a read option play, took the ball 58 yards into the end zone untouched.

Freshman kicker J Coe kicked the ball 60 yards and the Byron Center returner took it all the way back for 90 yards for a touchdown. Head coach Ty Hallock brought the kickoff return team in a huddle during the two point conversion, letting them know to snap and clear, and told them that kind of stuff happens. The boys took that as momentum and rallied through the Bulldog defense the next drive, coming just short due to the halftime buzzer.

The Rangers in the second half were playing just as good as they were in the first half, coming out with tons of intensity and thinking they were going to come out on top. On the second drive of the 3rd quarter, on 3rd and long, McDonald threw a perfect pass to freshman Nolan Hartl for a 46 yard touchdown. That really got things going for the Rangers, obtaining the exact momentum and enthusiasm they needed to punch in another touchdown.

Entering the 4th quarter, the Rangers were ahead with a reasonable lead. They continued to move the chains, but the Bulldogs weren’t giving up yet. They came down the field with a sense of urgency, knowing that it was key to move quick in order to come back. In 4 minutes, the Bulldogs added 16 points to their total score, making the game 28-22 with the Rangers still holding the lead. A few plays later on offense, the Rangers were finally in victory formation.

Winning this game puts them at 3-0 in the regular season, and maintains their spot as one of the top teams in the area.