Orange County’s defense sparks Hornets past Flucos


On Friday, Orange County’s football team was looking for a win after a rivalry loss last week to Louisa.  Against Fluvanna, they got that win, led by a strong defensive effort on the way to a 20-7 victory.

“It was just a good high school football game,” said Orange head coach Jesse Lohr.  “We moved the ball like we wanted to, but then we had penalties that took us out of drives, but we were able to overcome some of those penalties. It’s high school football, not everything’s gonna be perfect but we were able to get the win and that’s the most important thing.”


The first quarter came and went without much fanfare, with only one clock-grinding drive for each team being completed in the quarter that resulted in a scoreless ballgame.  However, on a drive that started in the first quarter, the Flucos marched down the field from their own 16-yardline and scored on a 7-yard run from Trace Harris with 6:58 left in the second quarter to put them up 7-0. Harris was one of the key performers for the Flucos with six carries for 20 yards and a touchdown while catching two passes for 22 yards. Chase Paschall chipped in another 15 carries for 52 yards.


After that, with an offense that had struggled to put the ball in the endzone, the Hornets forced a big turnover on downs after the Flucos went for it on fourth and one from their own 19-yardline.  Afew plays later, Paul Poirier got into the endzone from near the goaline with 46 seconds left in the half to tie things up at 7.  Poirier offensively ended the night with 14 carries for 103 yards and a score, while going 9 of 16 through the air for 143 yards.  


Then early in the third quarter, that Hornet defense struck again and struck hard, with Poirier picking off a pass from Owen Leydig and taking it to the house to help give Orange a 13-7 lead. After that, the swarming Hornets defense seemed to not give up any ground to the Flucos in the second half.


“We put in a new type of scheme, specifically for their offense, and we played it around the second quarter and really started to pick it up after the first drive,” said Poirier.  “We were just playing our positions, DBs, we’d been getting beat recently and we put emphasis on staying with our man until the quarterback crosses the line.”


In the fourth quarter the Hornets’ defense stayed strong, and a late interception by Naziere Mcintosh led to a 31-yard touchdown run by Bryant Chiles to help put the game away with 3:07 to play as Orange led 20-7.  Chiles ended the night with five carries for 40 yards and a score and one catch for 56 yards.


The Hornets will look to continue their winning ways at Monticello, while the Flucos will look to regroup with a tough home game against Western Albemarle.