The Augusta Orioles came out on top against the Circle Thunderbirds by a score of 7-6, on the back of a strong defensive performance and a solid run game by the Orioles on Friday night.
A fumble by the Orioles on the opening drive gave the Thunderbirds the ball in Oriole territory. A strong and consistent rushing attack by the Thunderbirds led the offense to a first and goal situation, where the Orioles made a huge stop to force a turnover on downs.
After the Thunderbirds forced a three-and-out, Luke Myers lead the offense down the field and ran it in for a touchdown from one yard out with one minute left in the first quarter. A failed two point conversion would end up being the difference in the ball game.
Neither team could get the offense rolling as a combination of good defense and penalties kept the offensive side of the ball for either side from finding their rhythm.
Going into the half the Thunderbirds led the Orioles 6-0.
Both offenses continued to struggle until late into the third quarter, where the Orioles found their stride with Jayden Wilson running the offense.
Early in the fourth quarter, Jayden Wilson and sophomore running back Ryan Andrews led the Orioles down the field with a balanced rushing attack, ending with a two yard touchdown by Andrews. The Orioles would cap off the drive with a successful PAT attempt giving them a 7-6 lead over the Thunderbirds.
The Orioles defense continued to give the Thunderbird offense trouble, keeping the Circle offense from moving the ball. The Orioles would eventually run out the clock to secure their first win of the season.
Head Coach Jason Filbeck was not happy with how the Orioles looked at times, explaining that it was an all-around sloppy performance but in the end a win is a win.
The Thunderbirds offense was led by Corbin Ingram and Luke Myers, who each totaled over 30 yards on the ground, including a touchdown run by Myers.
Augusta’s offense was led by Sophomore Ryan Andrews, who finished with 67 yards and a touchdown. Jayden Wilson added 39 yards on the ground to help propel the Orioles to week two victory.
The Circle Thunderbirds fall to 0-2 on the season and extended their losing streak to 18 games. With the win, Augusta improves to 1-1. Circle will travel to Winfield to take on the Vikings on Friday, Sept. 14, while the Orioles will host the Buhler Crusaders.