Scoring early and often was the key for OPRF as they nailed down their second win of the season.
The Huskies (2-3, 1-1) cruised past the Morton Mustangs 49-9 Saturday at Morton stadium, after a rain-soaked night postponed the Friday night matchup. The Huskies held Morton to just three points in the first half and reached a season-high 35 points before halftime as junior Naahlyee Bryant grabbed an interception and ran it in for a touchdown to put his team up 35-3 with 19 seconds to go in the second quarter.
“Usually on second down [Morton] likes to run a screen pass or throw a deep ball, so I was already thinking that pre-snap,” said Bryant. “When I lined up, I saw the quarterback backing up for a screen pass so I kind of retreated, and he threw the ball and I saw it and just went for it.”
“That was an amazing play,” said Huskies head coach John Hoerster. “That’s a very difficult thing to do to catch a ball coming in that fast and to have the athleticism to catch it and then score. It’s pretty awesome.”
The Huskies kept the scoring going as junior quarterback Jaden McGill connected with receiver Frank Krusinski in the corner of the endzone on a three-yard touchdown pass to put OPRF up 42-3 with 9:11 to go in the third quarter.
“We needed to get a little rhythm on offense, and I think the guys did some good things today,” said Hoerster. “We still have a ways to go, but it was great to see these guys execute the way they’ve been coached up to do.”
McGill went 15 for 21 with 215 yards and two touchdowns in the Huskie victory, while senior running back Nazareth Bryant rushed for 147 yards on 10 carries with two touchdowns. Senior wide receiver Jalen Davis grabbed four receptions for 79 yards, and junior wide receiver Ryan McFadden had six receptions for 60 yards with a touchdown. It was a spectacular offensive showing for the Huskies, as Hoerster and the rest of the coaching staff got them ready.
“Our coach [sparked the offense],” Bryant said. “I know coach got on them a little bit. They got it together today and started picking the ball up, and I’m proud of them. I saw my brother [Nazareth Bryant] moving the ball, and I knew [the offense] had it today.”
Defensively, along with Bryant’s interception, senior Henry Detmer and junior cornerback Jalen Bates each notched an interception for the Huskies.
“I’m proud of my defense,” Bryant said. “I know we’ve been struggling so far this season, but today we really picked it up. We came through all the way to the end from the first stringers to the fourth stringers. It was one of the best games we played this season, and from here, we’re only going to get better.”
Morton added to their scoring with an 8-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Allen Miramontes to sophomore running back Mason Bryant with 2:53 left in the third, but the Huskies sealed the win with a 5-yard rushing touchdown to the left by junior running back Jack Landis to complete the 49-9 victory.
The storm-ridden Friday night made for a longer weekend than the Huskies are used to, but they showed they were up for the challenge.
“It was a weird turnaround,” Hoerster said. “It’s tough when you expect to play on Friday and have to come back Saturday, it makes for a long weekend. The guys did a great job adjusting to that; it’s not easy.”
The Huskies continue their 2019 campaign at 7:30 p.m., Oct. 4 in a conference game at Proviso West. Bryant believes his team can build off the win and get some momentum going as they get into the bulk of the season in October.
“I’m proud of this team and getting this win today,” he said. “Now we just have to try and win out and finish the season strong.”
Hoerster echoed the sentiment.
“Some good things happened today, but we have to keep getting better,” he said. “We have to keep improving and enjoying each other’s company and be grateful for the opportunity to play the game.”