Oracles poach Cougars on the road

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Oracles poach Cougars on the road

The Oracles line up on defense as the Cougars begin their possession.

The Oracles line up on defense as the Cougars begin their possession.

Provided by Angel Prince

The Oracles line up on defense as the Cougars begin their possession.

Provided by Angel Prince

Provided by Angel Prince

The Oracles line up on defense as the Cougars begin their possession.

Joe Perry, Sports writer

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Last Friday, Carroll hosted Delphi for the annual Bacon Bowl. The battle for the skillet was teeming with fans, as the beautiful weather and heated rivalry attracted fans from all across the county. The matchup has been relatively even the past few years, as the skillet has swapped hands each year since 2017.

Carroll received the ball first to start an underwhelming first quarter. A Cougar three-and-out forced a punt, and the Oracles took over on offense inside their own territory. After picking up some small yardage, QB Jordan Roth failed to connect with WR Jayden McClain on a long streak route and the ball was intercepted. Carroll used this momentum shift to break down the gaps in the Oracle defense and drive down to the Delphi 13. Delphi’s defense held in the red zone, though, and brought up 4th and 3 on their own 5. The Cougars took a gamble on fourth down, only to be stopped short. The quarter ended with a blank box score as the Oracles began to work their way into Carroll territory.

Out of the break, Delphi’s offense got to work. On 3rd and 5 at the Carroll 46, Roth completed a 20 yard pass to WR Kullen Lowry for a first down. A 10 yard gain by RB Isaac Dekalb put the Oracles in the red zone, and two plays later, Roth completed an 8 yard pass to WR Jaden Roth to put the Oracles on the board. Kicker Gavin Gleason nailed the PAT and the Oracles were up 7-0. After a string of failed series and punts, Jaden Roth made another spectacular play, this time on defense. As the Cougars’ QB dropped back in the pocket, Roth broke around the corner of the line, jumped up, and intercepted the ball just as the QB released the pass. He took the ball back 35 yards to complete the pick six, and the Oracles were up 14-0 at the half.

Dekalb received the second half kickoff and took it back all the way to Carroll’s 47 yard line. Although the offense couldn’t capitalize on their field position, they were able to punt and pin the Cougars down inside their own 15 yard line. On the ensuing play, the Carroll QB was hit and fumbled the ball, and DE Brady Oliver was able to scoop and score. After a botched PAT, the Oracles were ahead 20-0. From here, Carroll began to make a comeback. After a series of punts, Carroll forced an Oracle three-and-out, setting up a Delphi punt. This snap was high, and punter Jordan Roth was forced to run the ball back for a safety. Carroll used their ensuing possession to score on a 5 yard rush, and the Cougars were down 20-9 with 3:29 left in the third quarter. Carroll’s momentum was subdued by a series of failed drives, and the quarter ended with an 11 point advantage for Delphi.

With the biggest rivalry of the year being played out, Carroll was given two major opportunities to turn the game around. At the beginning of the fourth quarter, Carroll drove to the Oracle 22 but lost possession after a turnover on downs. On their next possession, Carroll took over at their own 21 and managed to drive 55 yards to the Oracle 24. On 3rd and 5, they converted on a 5 yard out route to continue the possession inside the red zone. However, Jaden Roth’s spectacular performance continued, as he added a 6 yard sack to his stat sheet to force a turnover on downs. After a Delphi punt, Carroll took over in a desperate attempt to come back into the game. Unfortunately for Carroll, a 13 yard heave was intercepted by CB Jaren Reef. From here, the Oracles were able to run out the clock and bring home the bacon as they managed to keep the skillet for a second straight year.