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East Ridge football: No surprises as Raptors fall to Cretin 40-14

Sophomore quarterback Brandon Johnson and the East Ridge football team fell 40-14 to No.3-ranked Cretin-Derham Hall in the Suburban East Conference on Friday, Sept. 25 on the Raiders' homecoming night in St. Paul.

Without a senior on the roster, the East Ridge football team will learn a number of lessons on the field in its inaugural year.

On Friday, Sept. 25 the lesson was to have a short memory and to move on.

The Raptors fell to No. 3-ranked Suburban East Conference foe Cretin-Derham Hall 40-14 in St. Paul on the Raiders' homecoming night.

With an obvious size and experience advantage, the Raiders (4-0; 4-0 SEC) worked over the youthful Raptors in the first half, taking a 33-0 lead into the locker room at halftime. Cretin-Derham Hall senior quarterback Mark Alt, who didn't play in the second half, led the way with 113 yards passing and two touchdowns on 7-for-10 passing. At the break, the Raiders had out gained East Ridge 247 to -1 as the Raptors were unable to get into Cretin-Derham Hall's end of the field.

In the second half, however, East Ridge (0-4; 0-4 SEC) had much more success, outscoring the Raiders 14-7.

After Cretin-Derham Hall took a 40-0 lead on its first possession of the second half, the Raptors had back-to-back scores to cut the Raiders' lead to 40-14 with 2:45 remaining in the third quarter.

East Ridge's first score came from an eight-play, 3:24 drive capped by a 27-yard touchdown run by tailback Ezekiel Okeleye, who had a team-high 102 yards rushing on 22 carries to lead the Raptors' offense.

Less than two minutes later, after the Raptors' defense held Cretin-Derham Hall to a three-and-out, East Ridge junior Dayo Idowu blocked the ensuing Raiders' punt, allowing sophomore Jon Balagot to scoop up the loose ball and rumble 40 yards into the end zone.

However, that's as close as East Ridge would get as each team rested its starters.

Next, East Ridge hosts SEC foe Mounds View on Friday, Oct. 2 at the Raptors' Nest.

See the full story and additional photos in the Sept. 30 issue of the Bulletin