Josh Hartman | Sports Editor
Our Oriole football squad opened up the season Friday night at Dwaine Bell Stadium, home to the Lawrence North Wildcats. Avon came in with high expectations after a disappointing finish to last season, falling to rival Brownsburg in the opening game of the playoffs. Just like Avon, the Wildcats were looking to start the season 1-0. And that’s exactly what they did.
North opened up the scoring in the first quarter, going up 7-0. The Orioles answered right back with a 12 yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Henry Hesson to senior Wallace Stovall to tie the game up. From that point on, everyone in the stands and watching from home knew this game would be back and forth all the way until the final whistle in the fourth quarter. Hesson added three more touchdowns in the first half, including two more to Stovall and a 53 yarder to junior Joe Hall. The offense can only do so much though, as the defense struggled all night. Heading into the locker room at halftime, the Wildcats had a 48-27 lead. Avon tried to get it going late in the third, as Hesson threw another touchdown to Stovall, making the score 48-34, but it was a little too late to mount a comeback. Senior Lawrence quarterback Donaven McCulley was a problem for Avon all night with one rushing and four passing touchdowns in the game and was given the honor of MIC Network player of the game. He led his Wildcat squad to a 62-34 win over our Orioles, forcing Avon to fall to 0-1.
“With us both coming in freshman year as transfers, we got close real early and being able to start all 13 games sophomore year created chemistry on the field like no other,” Stovall said following the game about him and Hesson.
Stovall talked about his teammates on defense. He described that the defense is very young but has a high ceiling and that they’ll continue to grow and get better.
“It’s week one and I have no doubt that our defense will bounce back next week,” Stovall said.
The 6’0 receiver previewed the home opener against Ben Davis from his perspective.
“Coming into film Saturday morning, we had to put week one behind us,” Stovall said. “If we play how we know we can, I believe we will not have a problem with them.”
The Orioles have their second game of the season this Friday, August 28th, at the Hendricks Regional Health Stadium against Ben Davis, a team who is also looking for their first win.
Photos by Morgan Jones.