For The Daily Reporter
PENDLETON — “Sometimes, you just get beat.”
That was the refrain of Mt. Vernon head coach Doug Armstrong after his Marauders’ season came to an end with a 41-7 loss to the Pendleton Heights Arabians on Friday.
“Last time, we had a little bit of trouble stopping the run against them (Pendleton) due to their size and their push,” Armstrong said. “And honestly, we just couldn’t stop ‘em to get the ball back.”
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After playing to a 0-0 tie at the end of the first quarter, Pendleton turned on the pressure and began to bury the Marauders.
In the last five minutes of the second quarter, the Arabians scored two touchdowns on runs by senior running back Chase Cochran to take a 14-0 lead into the break. Cochran would finish the game with 200 rushing yards and three touchdowns.
After receiving the second half kickoff, Pendleton methodically marched down the field on a 17-play, 74-yard and 9-minute drive to go up 21-0. From there, the Arabians put the game out of reach.
Pendleton Heights would add three more touchdowns, one of which was a fumble return for a score, to lead 41-0 before Mt. Vernon would get on the board with a 5-yard run by junior running back Nathan Seifert to make the final score 41-7.
Where there was sadness on the Marauders’ sideline, there was elation on the Arabians’ sideline.
“Just what a great effort from these kids tonight,” Pendleton Heights coach Doug Broughton said as his team was singing the fight song on the sideline. “To come out and avenge a loss was great.”
According to Broughton, who is in his 40th season coaching the Arabians, the difference was all in his team’s effort compared to its 35-7 loss to the Marauders earlier in the year.
“Honestly, it seemed like we wanted it a lot more than we did a few weeks ago, and hopefully we will keep that attitude going forward,” Broughton said.
As for the seniors leaving the Mt. Vernon program, Armstrong put it nicely: “There’s some fine football players there, but there are also some fine people leaving us.”
The cupboard is far from bare for the Marauders, however. Twenty starters will return to next year’s team, and the outlook is bright.
“They are great, hard-working kids, and we can be a highly-contending team next year I think,” Armstrong said.