SUGARCREEK If the Generals loss last Saturday to Liberty Center was a rare event, then what they did this past Friday was an extremely rare event. They lost their second game in a row.
After going on a 27 regular season win tear, the Generals suddenly find themselves on a two-game losing streak.
This time it was to Garaway as the Pirates, who had lost their last 10 games to Ridgewood, used a tough defense and wide-open aerial show to score a 13-8 IVC win on a chilly and windy night.
Indeed, the General offense did not cross the goal line, also an extreme rare event, as Ridgewoods only score came on a 15-yard interception return by Lenard Davidson early in the third quarter. Trent Lingos two-point conversion gave the Generals the lead, 8-7, with 10:43 remaining in the frame.
But the Pirates came back strong with a nine-play, 68 yard drive that culminated with junior quarterback Tyler Walter hitting Matt Ridenour on a five-yard scoring pass. The two-point conversion failed and the Pirates led 13-8.
Davidson would intercept another pass deep in General territory later in the quarter to end another Pirate threat.
Ridgewood had its chances in the fourth period. They drove to the Pirate 20 before being stopped on downs. Then with 2:35 to play, they took the ball from their own 23 to Garaways 16 but four incompletions later, the game was over as the Pirates ran out the last 52 seconds.
Garaway had scored its only points in the first half on a four-yard run by Eric Schie to cap a 10 play, 47 yard drive. Gabe Elmore added the extra point to make it 7-0 with 50 seconds to go in the quarter.
One Pirate threat early in the first quarter ended when Dakota Albertson intercepted a Walter pass in the Generals end zone. Garaway also missed a 36-yard field goal.
In a night of rarities all around, its not often a team can throw four interceptions and still win the game.
But thats how many Walter ended up with, although the Generals could only capitalize on one of them. (Brian McElhaney had the other pick.) However, Walter did complete 26-for-39 for 305 yards to keep the Generals off balance. Duane Troyer was his favorite receiver with seven catches for 101 yards.
Ridgewood finished with 204 yards of offense. Quarterback Chris Saylor was 10-for-18 for 102 yards with non interceptions. The team had 102 yards on the ground on 26 carries with Lingo accounting for 81 of that total on 17 totes.
Garaway racked up 373 yards, including 68 on the ground. Walter ended up going 26-for-39.
The Pirates held a substantial lead in first downs, 25-9. The Generals lost one fumble while Garaway lost none.
Both teams not stand at 3-1 in league play and 6-2 overall. That puts a four-way tie at the top of the IVC between the Generals, Pirates, Tigers, and Hornets (Oh my!) with only two weeks to play.
In a huge matchup this Friday that will help determine the champion, Ridgewood hosts powerful Strasburg. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.
Ridgewood 0 0 8 0 8
Garaway 7 0 6 0 - 13
G-Schie 4 run (Elmore kick)
R-Davidson 15 interception return (Lingo run)
G-Ridenour 5 pass from Walter (pass failed)