GREELEY — It’s hard not to take it personally when you get scheduled as the opponents homecoming game.
Over the last few seasons, the Frederick Warriors have had to deal with that on more than one occasion.
But the past is the past, and the 2017 Warriors have a distinctly different feel about them and it showed on Friday night at District 6 Stadium against Northridge … on the Grizzlies homecoming.
Frederick dominated their winless opponents from the opening kickoff and rolled to a 48-12 victory to run their record to 3-1.
Coach Travis Peeples, his staff and his players didn’t concern themselves with whole homecoming opponent identity.
“I don’t take it personally, it’s just what they thought of us and we thought we were able to come out here and do what we did,” said Peeples, whose team wraps up the nonleague portion of their schedule next Thursday against Centaurus before entering the rough-and-tumble Tri-Valley.
“To me, this was a huge game and a turning point. They believe in themselves, they have through the first three games and know it is something that has come to fruition.”
The Warriors, as they like to do, established their powerful running game behind their talented offensive line on the very first possession of the game.
They diced up an undersized Grizzlies defense in less than two minutes for the opening score — a 10-yard run right up the middle by Jacob Cole.
After a quick three-and-out from the defense, the second drive was even quicker. James Jones, who didn’t even touch the ball on the first drive, made the most of his initial carry. He went 55-yards for an easy score.
“That’s what we like to do because we feel like our strength is on the lines,” Peeples said. “And our backs tonight were awesome. The quarterbacks did their job and we were able to mix it up a little bit.”
The rest of the night belonged to senior Matt Olsen, whom his coach called a “next level type of kid.” He scored on runs of 14 and 3 yards in the second quarter and then capped off a 29-0 first half with the first of his two interceptions of Chance Eben.
“Everyone did their assignments and I couldn’t have done anything without the team around me,” said Olsen, who hauled in an 11-yard pass from Jacob Green at the end of the third quarter. “This feels amazing. We haven’t had a good season in years and I was a little nervous coming into this game.”
Olsen finished with 122 yards on 15 carries to pace the potent Warriors ground game that churned out 286 yards … mostly on short fields.
The defense was on point all night, with the exception of Eben’s 79-yard scoring run to start the second half, and made the tired Grizzlies pay late in the game. Sophomore linebacker Joe Notero had two punishing hits, including one that wobbled Eben early in the fourth.
FREDERICK 48, NORTHRIDGE 12
At District 6 Stadium
Frederick (3-1)1415127—48Northridge (0-4)0066—12
Frederick — Jacob Cole 10 run (Luke Dunker kick).
Frederick — James Jones 55 run (Dunker kick).
Frederick — FG Dunker 25.
Frederick — Matt Olsen 14 run (kick blocked).
Frederick — Olsen 3 run (kick failed).
Northridge — Chance Eben 79 run (pass failed).
Frederick — Cole 15 run (kick failed).
Frederick — Olsen 11 pass from Jacob Green (kick blocked).
Frederick — Dante Ciaravola 23 pass from Kyle Polansky (Dunker kick).
Northridge — Cort Cunningham 20 fumble recovery (no attempt).
RUSHING — Frederick: Matt Olsen 15-122, James Jones 12-85, Jacob Cole 13-58, Brandon Hornby 1-11, Jacob Green 1-9, Joe Notero 1-3, Tyce Morgan 1-2, Dante Ciaravola 1-1, Jesse Roe 1-(minus-4). Northridge: Chance Eben 12-117, Cort Cunningham 7-27, K.P. Werner 8-22, Devin Lunsford 4-6.
PASSING — Frederick: Kyle Polansky 3-5-0-56, Green 3-5-0-29. Northridge: Eben 5-17-3-40.
RECEIVING — Frederick: Cole 3-36, Ciaravola 2-38, Olsen 1-11. Norhtidge: Levi Mueller 2-22, Lunsford 1-7, Hayden Rose 1-6, Werner 1-5.