Short fields for Baldwin made for a rough season-opener Friday at Steve Grogan Stadium. The Ottawa High School football team fell 35-7 against league rival Baldwin.
The Bulldogs drew first blood when Cade Grossoehme, junior, blocked a punt in the endzone by Ottawa’s Cameron Reynolds, senior. The ensuing two-point attempt was no good and Baldwin led 6-0.
Ottawa’s Jackson Allan, senior quarterback, was picked off with 5:21 left in the first half on a bubble screen pass by Devin Owings, senior. That gave the Bulldogs the ball on the Ottawa seven yard-line. Zach Flowers, senior, fumbled the ball into the endzone on the next play, but his teammates were there to recover for a Bulldog touchdown. The two-point attempt was good to give Baldwin a 14-0 lead, which it would keep into halftime.
“We gave them everything they had in the first half with penalties, an interception basically for a touchdown,” Rob Hedrick, OHS head football coach, said. “They had very little offensive yardage in the first half, but had a 14-0 lead because we hurt ourselves so bad. In the second half we got a little better, but we still made so many terrible mistakes. I’m sure we looked like a circus out there at times and that is embarrassing.”
Ottawa’s lone score came when Allan found senior wideout Brandon Carlson for a diving catch in the endzone on fourth-and-10. That made it a one-score game, 14-7. The Cyclones however, never found the endzone again.
Baldwin scored three times in the fourth to put the game out of reach. Connor Quick, junior, punched the ball in from one yard out with 10:15 left in the fourth. The Cyclone offense then fumbled in their own territory with eight minutes to go, leading to an eight-yard touchdown run by Flowers with 6:05 left.
Ottawa (0-1) plays 7 p.m. Friday at Spring Hill.
“I believe in this team,” Hedrick said. “I still have such a good feeling about this team. They play hard and they practice hard. Hopefully the penalties and mistakes get better.”