Tualatin starts fast, and then holds off Oregon City
OREGON CITY — It wasn't easy.
It got interesting.
But the Tualatin High School football team is still perfect on the season.
The Timberwolves, jumping to a 29-7 halftime lead over Oregon City, and then holding off the Pioneers in the second half, scored a 36-28 win in a Three Rivers League opener played Friday at Pioneer Stadium.
"We had plenty of opportunities to put them away but shot ourself in the foot with turnovers and penalties," Tualatin coach Dan Lever said. "It was a physical game, and I'm proud of the way our team responded to a big physical Oregon City team."
With the victory, the Wolves moved to 2-0 on the season.
"If we can get healthy in certain spots and continue to improve then we are going to continue to have a lot of fun," Lever said.
Oregon City moved to 1-1 with the setback.
"Oregon City is a good football team they are going to go surprise people and win some games," Lever said.
Tualatin, in the victory, had big plays on both sides of the ball. On defense, the Wolves came up with four turnovers. Senior linebacker Garrett Boespflug had an interception and fumble recovery. Junior linebackers John Miller and Luke Marion each had an interception.
Senior receiver Caden Dickson provided a big spark on offense, catching a 50-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Kyle Dernedde, throwing a 39-yard touchdown to senior receiver Jett Searle on a trick play and also running nine yards on a sweep.
Dernedde, for the game, completed seven of nine pass attempts for 68 yards and two touchdown. He also ran for 39 yards. Senior running back Dominique Loggins rushed for 103 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 21 carries.
Searle had three catches for 42 yards. Senior running back Kyle Kamp had the other touchdown reception for the Timberwolves.
Despite all the heroics, Tualatin saw its 29-7 halftime lead cut to 36-28 after Oregon City quarterback Colby Iverson threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Calvin Green with 2 minutes and 21 seconds left to play in the game. But Tualatin ended up with the ball following the Pioneers' ensuing onside and killed off the rest of the clock to wrap up the victory.
Iverson, for the game, completed 10 of 28 passes for 181 yards. Tualatin limited Oregon City standout running back Zakayas Dennis-Lee to 54 yards on 17 carries.
The Timberwolves will be back on on Friday to face McNary (0-2) in a non-league game starting at 7 p.m. at Tualatin High School.