Class 6A football — The Tigers gift Glencoe the only score of the game on a fumble return and miss multiple chances to secure the go-ahead score

HILLSBORO – Looking to snap its two-game losing streak, Newberg put forth its best defensive effort of the season in pitching a shutout Friday night at Glencoe.

The Tigers turned away the Crimson Tide offense repeatedly, but at the same time, couldn’t break through on offense either.

In a battle of attrition, it was the Tigers who made the bigger mistakes on offense, gifting Glencoe a 56-yard fumble return for a touchdown that proved to be the only score of the game and the difference in a 6-0 SETH GORDON - Smashmouth - Newberg fullback Matthew McCarthy takes a handoff during Newberg's 6-0 loss to Glencoe on Friday night at Hare Field in Hillsboro. McCarthy was held to 49 yards rushing on 21 carries as the Crimson Tide focused on shutting down the Tigers' interior run game.

“We stuffed their offense, but they also did an awesome job on us,” head coach T.J. Tomlin said. “We just didn’t execute. I feel like I’m a broken record. We’ll keep working at it. We’ll keep going.”

After forcing Glencoe to punt on the opening possession of the game, Newberg was set up with good field position and moved into Crimson Tide territory on its second offensive play of the night.

Facing third-and-short — the first of several promising opportunities — Newberg fumbled the handoff, which defensive back Kainoa Hanchett scooped up and raced down the sideline for the only points Glencoe would need.

Grayson Oviatt’s 33-yard field goal attempt on the next possession sailed just wide to keep the Tigers off the board, but it was the Crimson Tide’s turn for a major miscue, fumbling the ball two plays later.

Newberg drove to the 4-yard line, but was stopped on back-to-back plays to come away empty-­handed.

Following another Glencoe fumble in the second quarter, the Tigers once again drove inside their opponent’s 10-yard line, but a holding penalty pushed them back to the 24 and Oviatt was intercepted on the following play.

Still trailing, Newberg fumbled the ball on back-to-back possessions, but both times the defense stepped up and stopped the Crimson Tide to get the ball back.

Even when a pair of personal foul penalties set Glencoe up at the 13 yard-line, the Tigers stuffed the Tide on four consecutive plays to get the ball back with 2:57 to play.

Newberg promptly moved the ball across midfield, with Oviatt completing a pass to fullback Matthew McCarthy to set up second-and-one from the Glencoe 29-yard-line with just more than a minute to play.

Unfortunately, the Tigers were stuffed for no gain on their next three plays to ice the game.

“We had those two personal fouls, which I’m not happy about, but they’re on the 15-yard line going in with six minutes to go and our defense stuffs them and gives us an opportunity,” Tomlin said. “We take that opportunity and we just didn’t grab it at the end. We just didn’t grab it.”

Tomlin said Newberg, which will host Tualatin at 7 p.m. Friday, showed spirit throughout the contest, especially on the defensive side of the ball.

“Now the test is, can we keep it together?” he said. “We’ve lost three games that could have easily gone our way, so our kids have to keep their heads up and keep their attitudes high and understand we still have a long season and it’s not over by a long shot.”

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