The Chadron Eagles’ season came to a close, Saturday, in Golden, with a 49-20 defeat at the hands of the Colorado School of Mines Orediggers.
Mines offense, which had 763 yards in the game, scored early and often despite Chadron’s best defensive efforts.
The loss brings the Eagles’ season to a close with a 7-3 record. A win might have meant a playoff bid.
Mines’ first possession went 75 yards on 11 plays, finished by a five-yard run by Orediggers running back Cameron Mayberry, junior of Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Chadron wasn’t able to find the same success on their own first drive, but a missed Orediggers field goal from 27-yards out opened the door for the Eagles to tie the game in the first quarter.
The Eagles’ ensuing drive ate over six minutes of the clock as Chadron drove 80 yards to the 1-yard line where Kevin Coy Jr., senior of Davenport, Florida, punched into the end zone to tie the game. Earlier in the drive CSC quarterback Dalton Holst, sophomore of Gillette, Wyoming, found receiver Chad Mikelson, redshirt freshman of Julesburg, Colorado, for a gain of 35 yards to keep the drive alive after the Eagles were forced to third-and-20 from the Mines 47-yard line.
Chadron wouldn’t score again until late in the third quarter when Holst again found Mikelson for a 22-yard TD.
Chadron receiver Cole Thurness, sophomore of Rapid City, accounted for the Eagles final score of the game on one of his patented big receiving plays that went 80 yards and into the end zone.
Despite the loss, Chadron’s defense managed to pick off Orediggers quarterback Isaac Harker, senior of Lebanon, Indiana, three times. The Eagles Deandre Barthwell, junior of Westland, Michigan, Demetrius McFadden, junior of Pahokee, Florida, and Zecharie James, senior of Hampton, Virginia, were credited with the interceptions.
Barthwell and James’s interceptions came on back-to-back Oredigger possessions late in the first half.
The Chadron defense was led by Keenan Johnson, senior of Chadron, who had 12 tackles, two solo and one assisted. Teammate Tyree Fryar, junior of Burlington, New Jersey, and Tayven Bray, freshman of Highlands Ranch, Colorado, each had nine tackles.
Holst threw 63 times in the contest, completing 32 passes for 412 yards and two touchdowns. The sophomore quarterback was sacked on three occasions. Holst passed to nine CSC teammates, none more than Mikelson who caught 10 for 147 yards and one touchdown. Thurness was Holst’s next most found receiver, catching six passes for 111 yards.
The Oredigger defense did well to contain the typically strong Chadron run, limiting the Eagles to just 52 yards on the ground. Coy took the ball just 21 yards on 10 carries.