By Gini Davis
The Creswell Chronicle
The Bulldogs battled valiantly against the 17th-ranked defending state champion Harrisburg Eagles, forcing an early turnover on downs and making some spectacular catches. But the effort ultimately fell short at the Dawgs dropped their Homecoming game, 14-49, on Oct. 6.
“It felt pretty good offensively with some of the things we did, moving the ball down the field,” said Creswell Head Coach Scott Worsham. “It was not a bad showing for Homecoming – of course you want to get the win, but the kids played well against a good team, so that was nice to see.”
The Dawgs neared the 10-yard line on their first drive before a bad snap on fourth down forced a turnover. “We had a great first drive, and we had a good play called; we were in the zone, trying to score a touchdown,” Worsham said.
Creswell returned the favor on Harrisburg’s first drive, forcing a turnover on downs.
It was 0-0 at the end of the first quarter, but Harrisburg racked up 21 in the second period and led 36-0 after the third.
“Our game plan was our short passing game, to get rid of the ball early, and we were pretty successful at that – and we ran some running back screens that worked well for us,” Worsham said. “But Harrisburg’s big thing is they’ve got two sophomore running backs – Gabe Knox and Wyatt Dennis – who are big, strong and fast; they’d get the ball into their hands and we struggled to bring them down before they got into open field.”
The Bulldogs got on the board in the fourth quarter. Jack Callahan scored first, on a 23-yard pass from quarterback Colton White, then Bryson Forsman scored on a 15-yard run. Christian Tucker capped both TDs with the extra-point kick.
The Eagles added 13 points to bring the score to its final margin.
White completed 27 of 44 passes for 264 yards through the air. “He had a good game,” Worsham said.
Callahan had 14 receptions for 134 yards. “That’s a lot of catches in a ballgame, and he made some great ones,” Worsham said. “He’s been doing that all season, making amazing catches; he’s a great wide receiver for us.”
Dylan Miller had five receptions for 84 yards; Dallton Dewey had four receptions for 32 yards; and Tyler Frieze had four receptions for 15 yards.
Dean Howard led Creswell with five tackles; Callahan and Dewey each had three.
“Harrisburg’s got a good football program; they lost four or five really good seniors last year, but they’re still strong,” Worsham said. “It was good to see our kids play, for the most part, pretty well offensively against a good team. We’ve improved a lot from day one, and the kids have worked hard all season.”
Worsham hopes the payoff for all that hard work and steady improvement will come this Friday at Pleasant Hill: “We’ve got a good shot against Pleasant Hill; it’s two pretty even teams,” he said.