Lake Orion’s Corey Ester (17) out races Rochester’s Joe Iannetta (81) to the corner during the first quarter of the game played on Friday Oct. 4, 2013 at Rochester High School. Lake Orion won the game 41-20. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
FOOTBALL: Dominating running game powers Lake Orion to 41-20 victory over Rochester
Christopher Leigh (24) of Lake Orion steps out of the tackle attempt of Rochester’s Zach Gordon (2) during the third quarter of the game played on Friday Oct. 4, 2013 at Rochester High School. The Dragons beat the Falcons 41-20. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Lake Orion’s Kyle Bell (12) looks for running room around Rochester’s Anthony Cicala (84) during the second quarter of the game played on Friday Oct. 4, 2013 at Rochester High School. Lake Orion won the game 41-20. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Rochester wide receiver Demetrius Magee (9) catches a pass across the middle and is up ended by Lake Orion’s Charles Highlen (3) during the first quarter of the game played on Friday Oct. 4, 2013 at Rochester High School. The Falcons lost to the Dragons 41-20. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
ROCHESTER — Lake Orion and its tandem of running backs were too much for the Falcons as they powered through Rochester 41-20 Friday night.
The game plan for Lake Orion was to run the ball all night long and see if the front seven for Rochester could stop them. The Dragons charge was lead by senior running back Christopher Leigh.
Leigh had 8 carries for 143 yards and four touchdowns for the Dragons.
Lake Orion had 421 rushing yards in the game and did not even attempt a pass in the second half.
“We did a much better job blocking on the perimeter and executing," said head coach Chris Bell. "We put the ball in their (Running backs Ester and Leigh) hands and when in space they are a threat. So they played very- very well.”
Lake Orion running back Corey Ester also was a major contributor in the running game as he carried the ball 6 times for 59 yards and scored a touchdown in the crucial minutes of the fourth quarter.
“We’re the kind of guys that can take over games and carry the team and we have to do that every week to be successful,” said Ester about the dominating running game.
Rochester was able to throw the ball well tonight against the Dragons as their quarterback Kevin Byrd threw for 253 yards and a touchdown.
“We knew coming in we had a severe disadvantage in the speed category. We had to stop the big plays in order to stay in the game tonight and we weren’t able to stop the big play and we lost,” said head coach Erik Vernon.
With this victory, Lake Orion improves its record to 5-1.
“Next week we have a chance to get number six against Pontiac. Hopefully we can win next week and clinch a playoff spot. That is our first goal,” said Bell.
“It’s great motivation for us. Our first goal is to get six (wins) and clinch a sport in the playoffs. After that then we will have an opportunity to go after the league title. League title or not it’s a chance to play Clarkston so it doesn’t matter,” said Bell when asked about going for the league title.
With the loss, Rochester falls to 3-3 and could still have a chance to make the playoffs.
“We have to take it one game at a time. I mean we will talk about it when we get to it. We are just excited to have the opportunity to play. We are playing three good teams, two definitely in Stoney Creek and Adams. Hopefully we can get there and take care of them,” said Vernon.
Rochester will be on the ropes the rest of the season with three losses. They will start their run to the playoffs against Troy Athens (1-4).
“We got to worry about Athens first because Athens is a good team. They can beat us for sure. We just have to take it one game at a time,” said Vernon.