Though the night went into Wallowa’s loss column upon firing of the final gun, the football Cougars gave their fans further reason Friday to expect big things this season.

The Cougars ultimately fell to Adrian, 38-22, but last year’s state champ team couldn’t notch the win without staging a third- and fourth-quarter comeback from a 22-14 Wallowa halftime lead.

After the Antelopes got the only first-quarter points — a 53-yard rushing touchdown followed by a failed conversion — Wallowa quarterback Koby Frye blasted free on a keeper for 67 yards to tie the score, and teammate Chandler Burns ran in a 2-point conversion to put Wallowa ahead. A little while later in the quarter, Noah Allen completed a Wallowa drive with a 15-yard scoring run, and a 2-point conversion attempt failed, leaving the Cougars up 14-6 at this point.

After the Antelopes tied the game with a 2-yard TD run and successful 2-point conversion, Wallowa capped the first-half scoring, Frye first connecting to Travis Haga on a 28-yard TD pass, and then running the ball in for the conversion and Wallowa’s 8-point advantage at the break.

Unfortunately, the Cougars’ offensive magic was missing during a second half dominated by the Antelopes, who scored two touchdowns in the third quarter, and one in the fourth, and succeeded in all their conversions.

Wallowa stats: Chandler Burns had 89 of Wallowa’s 163 total rushing yards to lead the team, and quarterback Frye, who was 3-of-14 passing with one interception, twice found Cole Hafer in addition to the TD toss to Haga. Frye and Wallowa had 69 yards through the air. On defense, Gus Ramsden led with 6 tackles, Allen, Haga and Chandler Burns had 5 tackles each, and Patrick Ritthaler was next with 4 takedowns. Ramsden intercepted an Adrian pass.

This Friday the Cougars travel to Notus, Idaho, for a game starting at 7 p.m. Mountain Time, 6 p.m. Pacific.

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