Wallowa boys slip, slide down to third place

<I>Hector del Castillo/Chieftain</I><BR>Coach Kelly Guentert and junior Tyler Chrisman

Wallowa High scored first and last; in between, it was all Cove ... and rain.

Just two minutes into the Cougars' Oct. 23 football game at their home, junior running back Cody Green splashed about 51 yards en route to the end zone. Two minutes remained in the last quarter when backup quarterback Dusty McDaniel, a sophomore, went 30 yards for another six. But Cove High School's Leopards had already mounted a sizeable lead with four touchdowns in the second half and left with a 56-38 victory.

"We've come out of situations like that before," Wallowa senior lineman Sean Hunt said. "We've been a second-half team. We needed coach to yell at us at halftime. But today, we couldn't figure out how to get the ball down field."

The setback knocked Wallowa - now 5-3 overall and 2-2 in Old Oregon - down to third place in the league, tied with Pine Eagle. Cove (3-1) seized sole possession of second place. This coming weekend the final games of the regular season could throw the standings into confusion. Cove will host Pine Eagle, while Wallowa plays at home against Joseph (0-4).

After Green's scoring run in the opening minutes, Cove took over. Quarterback Jered Witty scrambled 13 yards for a 22-6 edge. But a second before halftime, Wallowa's senior quarterback Tyler Harshfield found senior Jake Johnson over 18 yards in pay dirt. Junior receiver Ronald Gladden added two points and pulled Wallowa back to within a 28-22 margin.

However, the Cougars would have to wait until the last quarter, when they emptied their bench of junior varsity players, for their next score.

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