MILTON-FREEWATER — Mac-Hi quarterback Chase Copenhaver completed just two passes during the Pioneers’ non-conference football game with Enterprise Friday night at Shockman Field.
The latter of the two connections — a 58-yard bomb to tight end Derek Richwine with six seconds left in the fourth quarter — put Mac-Hi in position to seize a victory from the visiting Outlaws.
But the opportunity for an early-season miracle ended on a failed 2-point conversion try and Mac-Hi exited the playing field with a 19-18 setback to drop to 0-2 on the season.
Enterprise, an Oregon Class 2A school that competes in the Blue Mountain Conference, got 108 yards rushing and a pair of running scores from Cody Duquette while improving its record to 2-0.
Friday’s game was marred by penalties. Mac-Hi was flagged 16 times for 107 yards while Enterprise was penalized 101 yards on nine infractions.
“We lost focus,” Mac-Hi coach Tim Hutchison said. “It was tough to overcome. You can’t win a game with (16) penalties.”
The opening quarter of the contest ended in a scoreless stalemate despite a couple of Pioneer possessions that began in the red zone.
On the first, Mac-Hi started at the Enterprise 11-yard line after an Outlaw fumble. But a trio of five-yard penalties helped bring the series to a halt.
On their next possession, the Pioneers failed to cross the goal line despite having first-and-goal at the Outlaws’ 9. Enterprise’s defense stopped Mac-Hi running back Beau Birdwell inches short of the end zone on a fourth-and-goal play from the 1.
The Outlaws used the closing stages of period one and the early moments of the second quarter to fashion a 99-yard drive. Duquette raced the final 53 yards with 9:26 left in the first half. Blu Risseeuw’s PAT kick made it 7-0.
Duquette’s run came three plays after a roughing-the-passer penalty that gave Enterprise a first down at its 42.
Mac-Hi responded on a 56-yard march that ended with a 1-yard sneak by Copenhaver at the 3:16 mark.
Enterprise led 7-6 at halftime.
The Outlaws extended their lead on the first snap of the fourth quarter. Duquette busted in from 7 yards out to give Enterprise a seven-point margin, 13-6, with 11:57 on the clock.
Dustin Freemantle gave the Pioneers hope with a red-zone interception on the Outlaws’ next series. He returned it from the Mac-Hi 18 to the Outlaws’ 45.
Seven plays later, Brayden Moller crashed in from two yards out with 7:51 remaining to bring the score to 13-12, a razor-thin edge Enterprise kept intact by blocking the extra point.
Jeffrey Jones, who carried six times for 45 yards prior to Moller’s score, rushed 16 times in the game for 101 yards to lead Mac-Hi ball carriers.
After an exchange of punts, the Outlaws drove 61 yards to once again up their lead to seven, 19-12, on a two-yard run by Dustin Dean with only 23 seconds to go.
The Pioneers’ Tavis Hodgen returned the ensuing kickoff 20 yards to the Mac-Hi 42.
On the next play from scrimmage, Copenhaver lofted a deep pass down the middle that Richwine corralled between two Outlaw defenders. Richwine was able to muster enough strength to drag would-be tacklers into the end zone and Pioneer fans went wild.
The jubilation, though, ended abruptly when a 2-point pass attempt by Copenhaver sailed off target.
“The kids never quit,” Hutchison said. “We’re proud of the boys. Derek played really well (at both tight end and defensive end). Chase (a back on defense) was really good. Jones ran and ran and ran.”
The contest ended after an unsuccessful onside kick and one offensive snap by the Outlaws.
Mac-Hi’s next game is Saturday at Portland Christian.
“We’re waiting for them to turn that corner,” Hutchison said. “We’ve got a lot left in the tank.”
Enterprise’s Damon Walker suffered a neck injury late in the first quarter that caused a 25-minute stoppage in play. Officials from both schools confirmed afterward the severity of the injury was not as bad as first thought.
Enteprise 19, Mac-Hi 18
Enterprise 0 7 0 12 — 19
Mac-Hi 0 6 0 12 — 18
Enter — Duquette 53 run (Risseeuw kick).
Mac-Hi — Copenhaver 1 run (pass failed).
Enter — Duquette 7 run (kick failed).
Mac-Hi — Moller 2 run (kick blocked).
Enter — Dean 2 run (pass failed).
Mac-Hi — Richwine 58 pass from Copenhaver (pass failed).
First downs 14 11
Rushes/yards 47-172 38-141
Passing yards 74 69
Passes (att-comp-int) 16-6-1 7-2-1
Punts 4-28.8 3-28.7
Fumbles-lost 2-2 3-1
Penalties-yards 9-101 16-107
RUSHING — Enter: Duquette 23-108-2, Castillega 11-38, Dean 10-30-1, Team 2-0, Morehouse 1-(-4); Mac-Hi: Jones 16-101, Hodgen 10-22, Copenhaver 6-11-1, Moller 2-4-1, Birdwell 3-3, Team 1-0.
PASSING — Enter: Castillega 6-16-1, 74 yards, 0 TDs; Mac-Hi: Copenhaver 2-7-1, 69 yards, 1 TD.
RECEIVING — Enter: Risseeuw 2-59, Morehouse 2-11, Duquette 2-4; Mac-Hi: Richwine 2-69-1.