KEEPING IT 100
ORTEGAS HIT CENTURY MARKS — TOUCHDOWNS FOR RICKY, COACHING VICTORIES FOR MATT — AS RED RAIDERS REACH CLASS 6A SEMIFINAL
Coatesville jumps to big lead, will host Garnet Valley
CALN >> If No. 10 Downingtown East was to pull off the upset against No. 2 Coatesville, it would need its trademark power run game to come through.
Friday, at a rainy Coatesville stadium, the Red Raiders eliminated any chance the Cougars had with a stifling defensive performance.
Coatesville stopped East on a fourth-and-two and fourth-and-one in the first half, allowing its offense to get going.
That it did, as the Red Raiders scored 31 points in the second quarter to roll to a 38-19 victory over East in the District 1-6A quarterfinals.
A week after the Cougars ran for 349 yards against Spring-Ford, Coatesville held them to 49 rush yards and one first down in the first half and 122 on the ground for the game.
The Red Raiders (12-0) will host No. 3 Garnet Valley in the semifinals next week.
“We prepared all week but our game plan didn’t change much,” Coatesville linebacker Nik Thompson said. “We added things we could do and now we get Garnet Valley next week.”
It was Coatesville’s second win over East in as many weeks, following a 42-7 win in week nine.
A bit of history was made as junior quarterback Ricky Ortega threw his 100th career touchdown pass (and added another pair on top of it) and his father, Matt Ortega, collected his 100th win at the helm of Coatesville.
“It’s a great accomplishment for me and I really enjoyed that moment,” Ricky Ortega said. “The biggest thing was being able to celebrate with my team and move onto the next round. That was the biggest accomplishment.”
Ricky has quarterbacked the Raiders for 36 of his father’s 100 wins at Coatesville, and the pair has won five straight against East.
“It’s awesome,” Matt Ortega said. “To be able to play our arch rival, and they do a great job over there, but to come out and share this special night with the team is special. The most important thing is we made it to the semis and we’re playing next week and we’ll see what happens.”
Ricky Ortega threw his first interception since week six on Coatesville’s first drive, spotting East the ball at the Raiders’ 33.
Coatesville’s defense was ready and and stuffed Garvey Jonassaint on fourthand-two. “Their defense has played really well,” East coach Mike Matta said. “Their defense is vicious.”
The Raiders followed their stop with a conversion on third-and-24 the ensuing drive when Dapree Bryant took a pass from Ortega and weaved his way for a 47-yard touchdown.
Bryant added a 49-yard TD pass in the second quarter and set up a touchdown runs by Aaron Young and Ortega with an interception and a long punt return late in the second.
Bryant now has 979 receiving yards on the season, and Young delivered another big game with 142 yards on the ground. Frankie Sherman added his fourth TD of the year on a 28-yard catch and run.
“They’re a good football team, a really good football team,” Matta said of Coatesville. “They beat us in all phases of the game, offense, defense and special teams. Give all the credit to them. They have good players and since Matt (Ortega) got there, he turned that program from above average to an outstanding team.”
Matta also pointed out his Cougars are 19-5 the past two seasons, with four of those losses coming at the hands of Coatesville.
The Raiders pulled their offensive starters at halftime and East was able to find the end zone three times in the fourth against Coatesville’s backups.
The attention will now shift to Garnet Valley in a rematch of the district final last year, won dramatically by Coatesville, 35-28, in the final moments.
Dapree Bryant (2) and Ricky Ortega (1) of Coatesville celebrate their second touchdown connection in the second quarter.
Coatesville’s Dapree Bryant returns an interception into Downingtown East territory in the second quarter.