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PRESSURED PASSER: La Grandes Weston Weaver (left) and Joseph Waite rush Pendleton quarterback Brian Nooy. (The Observer/PAT PERKINS).
PRESSURED PASSER: La Grandes Weston Weaver (left) and Joseph Waite rush Pendleton quarterback Brian Nooy. (The Observer/PAT PERKINS).

By Pat Perkins

Observer Staff Writer

Three lost fumbles in the first quarter might have signaled that the La Grande Tigers werent concentrating on football Friday night.

Pendleton converted two of those turnovers into touchdowns and left Community Stadium with a 37-0 non-league victory.

Fans observed a moment of silence before the game and lit candles in honor of those killed in Tuesdays terrorist attacks on the East Coast.

Their minds are elsewhere. They know theyre having to give the fans a release, La Grande coach Randy Waite said of his team.

Tenth-ranked Pendleton (3-0) wasnt nearly as affected. Quarterback Brian Nooy marched his team downfield on the opening drive, and Scott Sweet lunged in the end zone from the 1-yard line to give Pendleton a 7-0 lead.

They worked on a lot of things that they dont normally do, La Grande coach Randy Waite said.

Nooy threw the ball well he completed 13 of 19 passes for 145 yards threw two second quarter touchdowns and ran for a score in the third quarter.

La Grande, meanwhile, didnt get a first down until midway through the second quarter. Pendleton had a 14-0 lead before the Tigers took a snap. Casey Fenwick fumbled on the kickoff return after Pendletons opening touchdown, and two plays later, Jason Lambert rumbled 11 yards for a touchdown.

When Nooy fumbled on Pendletons next series, La Grande got two plays off before Tyson Stebbins fumbled and Pendleton recovered. The Bucks couldnt move the ball, but Fenwick fumbled the ensuing punt return, Pendletons Scott Sweet recovered and the Bucks scored five plays later on Nooys 14-yard pass to Drew Larson.

Twice in the second half, La Grande got within Pendletons 10-yard line but turned the ball over.

The first time, after a 13-play drive that put the ball at the 7, Kyle Bomberger threw a pass that Pendletons Drew VanCleave intercepted in the end zone.

Pendleton responded with a 14-play drive that ate 7 minutes off the clock. Kenley Wallis finished it with a 26-yard field goal that put Pendleton up 37-0.

Late in the fourth quarter, La Grande moved to Pendletons 2, but Bomberger couldnt get to a high snap and Chase Berry recovered the ball for Pendleton with 16 seconds to play.

La Grandes defense did have its good moments. The Tigers sacked Nooy or backup Andrew Wilde six times, with lineman Robbie Sloan getting 2 of those sacks.

Our defense played well, Waite said. We knew we were a lot smaller. Weve just got to work hard and get better for next week.

La Grande opens its Greater Oregon League season Friday against Grant Union in John Day.

Pendleton 14 13 7 3 37

La Grande 0 0 0 0 0

First quarter

P Scott Sweet 1 run (Kenley Wallis kick), 7:04

P Jason Lambert 11 run (Wallis kick), 6:27

Second quarter

P Drew Larson 14 pass from Brian Nooy (Wallis kick), 11:55

P Michael Blanc 11 pass from Nooy (kick failed), 3:00

Third quarter

P Nooy 8 run (Wallis kick), 8:23

Fourth quarter

P Wallis 26 FG, 2:00


First downs 23 10

Rushes-yards 42-183 26-77

Passing yards 145 81

Comp-att-int 13-19-0 11-21-2

Penalties-yards 9-75 8-48

Third-down conversions 7 of 12 2 of 9

Fourth-down conversions 1 of 1 1 of 1

Sacks byyards lost 1-8 6-24

Time of possession 27:59 20:01

Individual statistics

RUSHING Pendleton, Sweet 9-59, Hawkins 4-42, Lambert 3-30, Chapman 3-21, Wilde 7-20, Larson 5-9, Nooy 10-3, Oliver 1-(minus 1). La Grande, Fenwick 14-59, Bomberger 3-11, Wagner 5-9, Henderson 3-1, Simonis 1-(minus 3).

PASSING Pendleton, Nooy 13-19-0-145. La Grande, Bomberger 5-10-1-50, Wagner 6-11-1-31.

RECEIVING Pendleton, Blanc 5-66, Lambert 3-33, Larson 3-27, Chapman 1-11, Waterland 1-8. La Grande, Fenwick 4-41, Henderson 2-18, Stebbins 1-13, Gloria 1-7, Kleck 1-4, Simonis 1-0, Troutman 1-(minus 2).

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