PENDLETON - A strong running game led the Mountain View Cougars to a 27-16 Intermountain Conference win over the Pendleton Buckaroos Friday.
Mountain View out-rushed Pendleton 297-82 and the Bucks dropped their second-straight game of the season.
"It was a great effort by our kids," said Mountain View head coach John Nehl.
The Bucks (0-2, 0-1 IMC) had trouble in the first half, allowing Mountain View to jump out to a 19-0 lead.
"Mountain View came over to play," said Bucks head coach Brice Gundlach. "They pretty well outplayed us for about 80 minutes of the game."
Pendleton started to turn it around in the closing minutes of the first half. With about four minutes left a possible touchdown pass from Trevor Patterson went slightly long, barely off the tips of Matt Gundlach's fingers .
Patterson and Gundlach made up for it with three seconds left in the half, when they found each other for a short pass into the end zone. Patterson ran in the two-point conversion.
The Bucks came out strong in the second half. The defensive line held Mountain View scoreless for 10 minutes in the third quarter and Gundlach ran in a touchdown and a two-point conversion to pull Pendleton to within three points. Gundlach also blocked a possible touchdown pass from Mountain View in the third quarter.
"We had a lot of bright spots, we just had trouble with consistency," Brice Gundlach said. "It was a lot like last week."
Pendleton's good luck didn't last, however, as Mountain View running back Aston Eaton broke through for an 80-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to seal the Bucks' fate.
"I was so fired up," Eaton said of his run. "I told my fullback, 'you better get through because I'm going to fly.'"
Mountain View's Drew Entler ran in the two-point conversion, and the Cougars held the lead for the remainder of the game. Patterson got sacked by a pack of Cougars to end the game on a bitter note for Pendleton.
"We just have to practice hard and get better," Gundlach said, adding that the Bucks' passing and blocking were solid at times Friday night.