Buffs win big during homecoming game
The Madras White Buffalos football team hosted the Dayton Pirates Sept. 27, during its homecoming game and came away with a 39-12 victory.
Madras was able to establish a dominant run game with senior power back Treyvon Easterling, which helped their offense rack up 345 total yards of offense. The White Buffalos scored six touchdowns in the game and Easterling had a spectacular night, ending the game with 226 yards and four rushing touchdowns on 22 carries, averaging 10.3 yards per carry.
"Today's game was great, we had everything working in our favor," Easterling said. "We had a couple things we need to fix, but all in all, it was a really good game and I am proud of the whole team. My focus was just to do my best, honestly. The last few games had me in a type of mood, so I knew I just had to do what I do and everything would handle itself."
Dayton started with the ball, but the ball was intercepted by Madras' Angel Jimenez, after Buffalos linebacker Jeremiah Smith hit Dayton quarterback Kaden Fergus as he was throwing the ball.
On the first offensive play for Madras, the Buffalos were spread out wide, as sophomore quarterback Ethan Graeme threw a picture perfect streak to wide receiver Donnie Bagley for a 33-yard touchdown pass and catch. The point-after kick was good and Madras took a 7-0 lead with 7:15 left in the first quarter.
"As everyone saw, I was pretty excited and pretty emotional after that throw," Graeme said. "I thought this was a good team effort win. We worked really hard this week, did a lot of conditioning and team stuff; we just stayed disciplined and did our best."
The Buffalos held on to its lead after the first quarter, but on the first play in the second quarter, Fergus was able to find a wide-open teammate in the end zone. Gavin Arce caught the ball in the end zone for a 31-yard touchdown catch. The PAT was blocked and Madras held on to a small 7-6 lead with 11:54 left in the second quarter.
Former Madras quarterback and current outside linebacker, 6-foot, 190-pound Liam White took over as quarterback for Graeme. The Buffalos went back to a power running fast tempo offense they ran in 2017.
In the 2017 season, Madras ran an offense with Easterling, during which he would take a direct snap with the QB and fullback lead blocking for him. That offense saw Easterling earn 4A first-team honors, ending the season with 1,068 yards and 11 touchdowns as a sophomore. White was the quarterback during that time.
The White Buffalos powered and countered their way to a first-and-goal on the 6-yard line. Easterling ran straight up the middle for a touchdown and the Buffs took a 14-6 lead with 9:27 left.
On offense, Dayton decided to go for it on fourth down, but after the quarterback mishandled the ball, he was tackled by Madras linebacker Robert Pacheco for a loss and the Buffs took over the ball on offense.
Pacheco, another former Buffalo quarterback, was then the quarterback for Madras, having him lead block for Easterling. Madras again found success with Easterling running north and south. His runs set up several counters run by Smith on offense.
The White Buffalos marched down the field and Easterling scored on a sweep to the right side, set up by a lead block from Pacheco. The PAT was no good and Madras took a 20-6 lead with 5:16 left in the half.
Dayton's offensive drive was ended by a fumble recovered by White on defense.
Madras' offense took the ball over on the 55-yard line with 1:14 left in the first half. The first play was a sweep on the right side to Easterling, who took it to the house, giving the Buffalos a 27-6 lead.
The Dayton Pirates were desperate to score before halftime. They were able to use passes and quarterback runs to reach the 37-yard line with 2 seconds left in the half. The Pirates needed to throw a Hail Mary in the end zone to score and that was exactly what they did.
Fergus threw the ball as far as he could down the field and the ball found an open Kody Fuller in the end zone for a touchdown as time expired. The Pirates couldn't convert on a 2-point conversion and Madras had a 27-12 lead at halftime.
The Buffalos went right back to its offense in the second half and Easterling found the end zone for the fourth time, giving Madras a 33-12 lead.
"The offense was perfect," said Easterling. "We went so hard and I have to give a shoutout to my line, to my lead blockers, Liam, Robert, Kody, Keenan, everyone who put in the effort. They were the whole reason we found success. They helped me and I followed through."
The third quarter was filled with penalties on both teams, which didn't allow the Pirates or the White Buffalos to find a rhythm on offense.
With Graeme back at quarterback, the Buffalos again used its running attack to set up a quarterback sneak by Graeme, sealing a 39-12 victory over Dayton.
Graeme ended the game 3-for-5 with 39 yards, with one passing and one rushing touchdown. He finished the game with a 191.5 passer rating. Bagley had two catches for 34 yards and a touchdown.
"Our offense was just something in the making," he said. "It worked a little bit at Rainier and we worked on it this week. It really just clicked and worked for us. Liam and Robert both can throw, so it would be a great way to switch up things when we are pounding it down their thrown."
Smith played a crucial role in the Buffalos' running game, as he ended with 55 yards on six carries, averaging 9.2 yards per carry. Tony Salazar also ended the game with 30 yards rushing on six carries.
"I thought it was a good game," head coach Kurt Taylor said. "They responded very well after two weeks of not very good football and we asked them to respond, gave them an avenue to do so and they did. Kudos to them for taking ownership of it and doing what we needed them to do. They played a hard-fought game and moved the ball offensively, as well as great things defensively."
"The best part for me is, yes the outcome is in the right column, but they grew," he said. "That is what I am excited about. We changed our motto to own it, instead of prove it and we gave them as much adversity as we could. They did self-discipline all week and our conditioning was on a whole new level because we wanted to push them to see how they would respond."
"On Monday, they got a little chippy because we did a lot more conditioning than they were used to and we had coaches push them past limits," he said. "At first, we thought the wheels were coming off the wagon, but then they responded. It was really neat to see them grow this week, but they have to keep going. If they do, it will be pretty special in what they can do."
Madras has a big task ahead of them this Friday, as the team takes on the 4-0 Yamhill-Carlton Tigers. The away game at Yamhill-Carlton is at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4.
"Yamhill is much improved; I will give them that for sure," Taylor said. "I think we have to continue with this own it and self-discipline. We can't have any self sabotage stuff and we have to go in there to strive for excellence and go for a league title. It is going to go through Yamhill-Carlton, Scio and Corbett. It starts with Yamhill and we will take it one game at a time."
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