Portland Football Routs Ionia, Capturing 6th Straight League Title
“We’ve got a tough one in front of us. We’ve got to prepare like we always do; get ready to play them. If we win, we’re going to be at home”, said Portland Head Coach, John Novara just moments after winning their 6th straight league title. That’s the mentality the Raiders have heading into the home stretch of their regular season. The boys are ready to confront any challenge that lies in front of them and they did just that against the Ionia Bulldogs on Friday Night.
Reis Phillips led the offensive attack early for the Raiders, using a series of explosive runs to put the Raiders in the red zone. Running back, Trent Trierweiler broke through the line, scoring the first touchdown of many for the Raiders on the night. The Raiders defense locked down the Bulldogs, forcing a fumble, which was recovered by Reese Townsend. The boys marched down the field scoring again on yet another rushing touchdown from Trierweiler, giving the Raiders a 14-0 lead at the end of the 1st Quarter.
Portland continued to run the ball well for the majority of the 2nd quarter, mixing a few passing plays in here and there to keep the Bulldogs on their toes. Reis Phillips notched his first touchdown of the night to give the Raiders a healthy lead. Portland continued to pressure Ionia resulting in another fumble recovery for Townsend. Phillips continued to surprise fans, plowing through defenders and scoring his second rushing touchdown of the game. The Raiders went into halftime with a whopping 28-0 lead.
The second half started off with a bang. The Bulldogs muffed the kickoff and Trevor Meagher recovered the ball for the Raiders. However, the Raiders were unable to gain any sort of traction after the play. Ionia simply could not hold on to the ball tonight and the trend continued throughout the third quarter as Nathan Zimmerman capitalized on another Bulldog fumble. On the Raiders next drive, Quarterback, Haden Getchell entered in on the fun, breaking many tackles, securing his first touchdown of the night.
The fourth quarter was a wet one. The sleet led to very unpleasant, fall-like conditions but that didn’t stop the Raiders from finishing the night off on a high note. Drew Miller was able to score a rushing touchdown and the defense continued to do what they had done all night long. Despite the harsh conditions late in the game, the Raiders shut-out the Bulldogs 42-0.
Along with the win came quite the accomplishment; 6 straight CAAC White titles and 30 Straight League Victories. “This is 6 straight for us. Our kids prepare hard. Ionia has some tough kids, but I just thought we executed well and we got up early before this weather came in”, said Coach Novara in his thoughts on the game. The Raiders will look to close out their regular season strong, next Saturday afternoon against Battle Creek-Pennfield.