Ironwood Ridge wins season opener 42-40 - The Explorer: Sports

Ironwood Ridge wins season opener 42-40

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Posted: Friday, August 23, 2013 11:37 pm | Updated: 9:14 am, Sat Aug 24, 2013.

The Ironwood Ridge Nighthawk - no doubt frustrated from repeated lightning delays and a 17-7 halftime deficit - scored 28 points in the third quarter en route to defeating the Liberty Lions on Friday night.

Liberty jumped out to an early 7-0 lead after quarterback Tyler Wyatt broke free for a 72-yard touchdown carry in the first play of the game.

In their next offensive drive, the Lions utilized their running game effectively, driving to the Nighthawks’ 14-yard line, where Wyatt connected with wide receiver Gage Lytle to put the Lions up 14-0.

The reigning D-II state champion Nighthawks, who lost all but one starter to graduation last year, struggled to find any offensive rhythm until late in the first quarter.

In a 77-yard drive, Ironwood Ridge answered with a running game of its own via tailback Cole McLafferty. From the Lions’ one-yard line, McLafferty finished that push and put the Nighthawks on the board.

Liberty closed out the half with a 37-yard field goal to build a 17-7 lead.

The Nighthawks had a while to discuss things after a 45-minute lightning delay prolonged the beginning of the third quarter.

But when the third quarter did come, the Nighthawks were ready.

It was again McLafferty who would start things off, returning Liberty's kickoff to the Lions' 44-yard line, and Vartanian would finish things off with a one-yard score to make it 17-14.

The Lions answered right back when Wyatt went 74 yards for the score.

But it was the night of Vartanian and McLafferty. McLafferty scored on a five-yard run, and after Liberty failed to convert on offense, Vartanian struck again for the Nighthawks on an 18-yard rushing touchdown to give the Nighthawks a 28-24 advantage.

Liberty regained the lead soon thereafter on a 65-yard score, but Vartanian and McLafferty would each add another touchdown to give the Nighthawks a 42-31 lead.

Wyatt looked to even things up, however, after he knocked in a field goal, and soon after connected with receiver Gage Lytle for a 44-yard score

The Nighthawks ahead 42-40, Liberty's two-point conversion attempt failed and Ironwood Ridge collected its first win of the season.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)

Swimming

Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

 

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