Sandite defense overcomes Patriot surge for 29-24 victory at home

 Photo: Morgan Miller

Photo: Morgan Miller

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

SCORING SUMMARY

1Q 6:07 Gooch 23 yard pass to Robinson. Castillo PAT. 7-0 PCW.
2Q 11:51 Greathouse 9 yard run. Bales PAT. 7-7.
2Q 2:41 Greathouse 1 yard run. Bales PAT. 14-7 SS.
2Q 2:39. Greathouse 26 yard pass to Morgan. Bales PAT. 21-7 SS.
2Q 0:05 28 yard field goal by Castillo. 21-10 SS.
3Q 5:42 Scott 1 yard run. PAT missed. 27-10 SS.
3Q 5:33 Safety. 29-10 SS.
4Q 10:21 Gooch 5 yard pass to Potts. Castillo PAT. 29-17 SS.
4Q 2:20 Gooch 14 yard pass to Robinson. Castillo PAT. 29-24 SS.

The No.6 ranked Charles Page High School varsity football team (1-2) scored their first win of the season in their home-opener against No. 11 Putnam City West (2-1), dealing the Patriots their first loss of the season. The Sandites were the favorite to win, but penalties and turnovers made the game far closer than it should have been. 

The Sandites received the opening kickoff and started the game with some fireworks as senior quarterback Hunter Greathouse received a double reverse and fired a pass downfield to junior tight-end Dash Fleischman for a 26 yard gain. The rest of the drive fell flat, however, and the Sandites turned the ball over after a failed fourth and 8 pass attempt at the Patriots' 34. 

The Patriots were simple and methodical in their first drive, taking four minutes to drive 66 yards to be the first team on the scoreboard. Putnam quarterback Trey Gooch connected with Nick Robinson from 23 yards out and Pablo Castillo sent in the point-after to take the 7-0 lead.

The Sandites' second drive also fell short due to penalties and solid Patriot defense. Payton Scott picked up a pair of first downs on the ground and landed the home team at the Patriot 14 thanks to a big run with a facemask penalty tacked on the end. From there, everything went in the visitors' favor. Greathouse dropped the snap for a loss of five, and Scott took a tackle-for-loss on the corresponding play. It looked like Scott might get a shot at the endzone on the next handoff, but the play was blown dead due to a holding penalty on the Sandites. A third-and-nineteen pass attempt was broken up in the endzone by Arich Ansley, and on fourth-down, Greathouse was sacked at the 32 by Jordan Ealy.

The Patriots didn't keep the ball for long, however, turning it back over just a minute later and this time the Sandites hit pay-dirt. 

In the last minute of the first quarter, the Sandites drove their way down to the Patriot nine-yard-line for fourth-and-one. In the opening play of the second quarter, the offense piled behind Greathouse on a keeper to try and get the down, and ended up going all nine yards to the endzone for a touchdown. Kasey Bales sent in the point-after and the game was tied up.

Once again the Patriots failed to find traction and punted without a first-down. The Sandites ate up the clock on their corresponding 90-yard drive, and ultimately took the lead. The first play was a fifteen-yard screen to Caleb Wash. Greathouse added another first-down with a 30-yard pass to Bales, Scott picked one up on the ground, and Greathouse hit Bales again for 12. A run from Scott with a facemask at the end put the Sandites in the red zone at the 15-yard line. Greathouse hit Bales at the 1-yard line and scored on a sneak to take the 14-7 lead after Bales's PAT.

The next Sandite drive needed only two plays. Cade Looman sent the kickoff into the back of O'Neal Cotton and Brett Freeman was there to recover it for the Sandites at the Patriot 26. A repeat of the opening play of the game found Greathouse connecting with Dalton Morgan for the touchdown and a 21-7 lead.

The Patriots mustered up a solid drive, aided by some Sandite penalties, and marched to the 11-yard line before settling for a 28-yard field goal by Castillo.

The Sandites tried to score on a deep pass with less than a second remaining, but it was intercepted by T'Mahjai Scales who was tackled by the intended receiver, Bales, to end the half 21-10.

Freeman made yet another great play in the second half, picking off a pass to give the Sandites the ball at the Patriot 16. After being pushed back to a fourth-and-fourteen attempt, Greathouse connected to Mack Thompson at the 2-yard-line and Payton Scott punched it in a few plays later. Bales' PAT missed, but the Sandites led 27-10.

The Sandites scored yet again less than 10 seconds later. Looman's kick pinned the Patriots in at their 19, Delvin Jordan tackled Ealy for a loss of 3, and an unsportsmanlike penalty pushed the visitors back to their 8. A high snap over the quarterback's head traveled all the way into the endzone for a safety, and the Sandites took the ball once again.

From there it was the Patriots' game. The Sandites drove all the way to the visitors' 24 before Greathouse's pass was intercepted. The Patriots retained the ball into the fourth quarter and soon scored on a 5-yard pass to Chris Potts to cut the lead to 29-17.

 The Sandites' next drive was another turnover on downs after a pair of passes were broken up to give Putnam the field at their 32. Putnam marched downfield in yet another successful drive to score on a fourteen-yard pass to Robinson for a touchdown. Castillo's PAT sailed true and cut the deficit to 29-24. 

The Sandites held on to the ball for the remaining two minutes and picked up a first down run the clock out and secure the victory. 

Greathouse finished the evening 10-24-2-172 with one touchdown passing and was 6-(-7) with two touchdowns rushing. The Sandites split receiving duty fairly equally between five players, but Bales led with four receptions for 59 yards. Scott led the ground game with 37 carries for 147 yards and one touchdown. Jordan, Tre Finch, and Gage Fain led the defense with 5 unassisted tackles each, and Freeman was the star of the show with two tackles, an interception, and a fumble recovery.

Gooch led the opposition with a 16-25-1-131 passing record and 14 carries for 72 yards. He was in on all three touchdowns of the evening. 

The Sandites will play their first district game at home next Friday when they take on their Highway 97 rivals from Sapulpa. The Chieftains are ranked fourteenth in Class 6A-II with an 0-3 record after dropping this weekend's game 35-7 to 5A No.8 Bishop Kelley (2-1).

The Patriots will kick off district play at No. 10 Enid Friday (1-2) who just dropped a 44-14 loss to 5A No.7 Bishop McGuinness (2-1).