RED OAK — Through two quarters, Homecoming 2016 looked like it contained all the ingredients of a football game the Red Oak Hawks would remember for homecomings to come. Unfortunately a relentless Lake Ridge offense had other plans.
Behind three touchdowns in the third quarter, (4-2, 2-1) Lake Ridge sent (2-4, 0-3) Red Oak home with its third home loss of the season, 45-29.
“The third quarter was the deal. We got a few turnovers and stayed in the game during the first half,” Red Oak Head Coach Brian Brown said. “We missed down there on the one-yard line one time and should have scored a touchdown, but the third quarter — we had a fumble returned for a touchdown, the onside kick they got and the one we didn’t get — it just gnarled up on us.
“The thing that I was proud of was that we got back within 10 points and then we were going for two points to try and get it within two but missed on that and had a good shot to get it. Our kids fought back, we just shot ourselves in the foot so many times that we couldn’t come back from it.”
Red Oak found the end zone twice in the first quarter on a pair of short Chris Bugg touchdown runs. Edgar Perez extended the Hawks’ 14-13 lead to four points in the second quarter when he drilled a 23-yard field goal with 9:35 to play in the first half.
Later in the quarter, Jason Bean took an Eagle handoff 20 yards for the fist — and last — lead change of the game. The touchdown was the first of three rushing scores for the quarterback on the evening. In addition to his 12 carries for 183 yards (15.25 YPC), Lake Ridge’s 6-foot-1 junior signal-caller finished the night 12-of-25 through the air for 163 yards and two scores.
“Our defense has played well all season, but [Lake Ridge] did something that hurt us. They hadn’t run the quarterback much, and what was funny was that I was talking to a coach before the game and he said this guy was faster than the one they had last year, which I didn’t know if I believed but I may now,” Brown said. “But he can run the ball and he is fast. We have been playing great defense and at times tonight we played good, but had a few little breakdowns. Our coaches will fix that, though, they do a good job on Saturdays and Sundays.”
Red Oak had another chance to add at least three, if not six or seven, points when a big Vincent Doblado hit caused an Eagle fumble that put the ball back into the Hawks possession with 2:20 to go in the first half.
An Eagle pass-interference penalty followed three snaps later and gave the Hawks life with under a minute to play.
Bugg (14-29, 164 yards, TD, INT) then found Munoz on a corner route for a 23-yard gain into the Lake Ridge red zone. Munoz, a 6-foot-2 senior wide receiver, finished with a new season-high 105 yards on seven receptions for a 15.0-yard-per-catch average.
But three plays for not and a missed 32-yard field goal followed the Munoz catch and sent the Hawks into the locker room in the same 19-17 hole.
Out of the locker room, Lake Ridge scored 20 unanswered points during the third quarter. Red Oak finally responed when Munoz hauled in a three-yard touchdown reception from Bugg with 9:49 to play in the fourth quarter. The extra point kick clanged off of the upright to keep the deficit at 16 points, 39-23.
Each team added a score late, with Red Oak’s coming after a tough four-yard run by Blake Sonnier with 8:25 on the fourth-quarter clock. The touchdown was the third of the season for Sonnier, who finished with 44 yards on 14 carries, and pulled the Hawks within 10 points after failed two-point attempt.
Sonnier still leads the Red Oak rushing attack with 445 yards on 74 carries (6.0 YPC) this season.
Fifty-two seconds after Sonnier’s score, Bean added his fifth total touchdown of the night — this time of the 51-yard rushing variety — to put the proverbial nail in the Red Oak coffin, 45-29.
The Hawks will travel to (2-4, 0-3) Mansfield Summit on a short week for a 7 p.m. kickoff on Thursday, Oct. 13.
*A full preview of Thursday’s game will be in the WDL on Thursday, Oct. 13.
EAGLES 45, HAWKS 29
Mans. Lake Ridge — 13 6 20 6 -- 45
Red Oak — 14 3 0 12 -- 29
R — Chris Bugg 2 run (Edgar Perez kick)
L — Cartraven Walker 48 pass from Jason Bean (Addison McCarther kick)
R — Bugg 1 run (Perez kick)
L — Tyler Robinson 15 pass from Bean (kick failed)
R — Perez 23 field goal
L — Bean 20 run (attempt failed)
L — Zach Johnson 14 from Chandler Rogers (kick failed)
L — Bean 25 run (Chandler Rogers run)
L — Samaje Daugherty 1 run (attempt failed)
R — Jordan Munoz 3 pass from Bugg (kick failed)
R — Blake Sonnier 4 run (attempt failed)
L — Bean 51 run (attempt failed)
First downs 22 20
Rushes-yards 34-240 42-121
Passing yards 233 164
Passes 15-29 14-29
Fumbles–lost 3-2 4-2
Penalties–yards 6-55 8-56
Mans. Lake Ridge — Jason Bean 12-183, Darrius Lee 14-49, Chandler Rogers 3-5, Joseph Rowe 3-2, Samaje Daugherty 1-1, Bryce Williams 1-0
Red Oak — Dee Johnson 15-58, Blake Sonnier 14-44, Chris Bugg 14-19
Mans. Lake Ridge — Jason Bean 12-24, 163 yards; Chandler Rogers 3-4, 70 yards
Red Oak — Chris Bugg 14-29, 164 yards
Mans. Lake Ridge — Zach Jackson 6-78, Cartraven Walker 4-72, Malik Knowles 1-35, Tyler Robinson 2-29, Darrius Lee 1-10, Deven Langston 1-9
Red Oak — Jordan Munoz 7-105, Brock Houston 6-64, Blake Sonnier 1-(negative) 5
Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith