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Maple Grove Voice

Another Osseo Comeback Leads to Championship

Nov 14, 2015 01:54PM ● By Doug Erlien
Call them the cardiac kids, the comeback kids or whatever descriptive word you want to use to describe the resilient Osseo Orioles.

Just make sure you include champs.

The Orioles won their first Prep Bowl championship at TCF Bank Stadium 14-13 over East Ridge. For the fifth straight game in the playoffs, the Orioles rallied from a deficit as Prince Kruah scored the game winning touchdown with just 24 seconds left. The score capped off an amazing 16 play 71 yard drive.

“I wanted it so bad,” Kruah said. “I was like ‘please give the ball to me’.”

He got it for the 43rd time in the game and then gave the Orioles a championship.

His 43 carries for 198 yards against the Raptors gave him 186 carries and nearly 1,100 yards and 11 touchdowns in five playoff games.  

The Drive:
With 3:22 remaining in the game, the Orioles took over on the 24 yard line with two timeouts remaining. Kruah ran 8 times on the drive accounting for 38 yards including the score on the final play. The Orioles converted on third down four times on the drive and Damario Armstrong made three catches including a beautiful over the shoulder catch that set the Orioles up at the East Ridge 8-yard line.

Kruah picks up the credit for the touchdown, but it was the offensive line, that led the way. John DelMonico, Evan Williams, Jackson Ehlert, Nehemian Beckstrand, Nash Jensen and Christian Tharp provided the holes and played more physical than the Raptors on the final drive.

Getting Defensive:
Defensive Coordinator Mike Johnson stood in the corner of a packed Osseo gym, smiled and shook his head.

“We held them to 13 points,” said Johnson. “That’s the fewest points they have scored all year.”

It wasn’t easy. The Raptors, a big physical football team were held to just 197 yards. There was no bigger stop than early in the fourth quarter when the Raptors were in the midst of a 17 play drive that would have given them a two possession lead. The Orioles defense made a stop at the 11-yard line forcing East Ridge to attempt a 29-yard field goal. Raptors kicker Grant Ryerse, who had made field goals from 41 and 36 yards in the game missed wide right, giving the Osseo offense the ball and hope for the comeback.

“If you want to talk about the key to the game, you’ve got to talk about our defensive coordinator Mike Johnson,” said head coach Derrin Lamker. “To hold these guys to 13 points, even though they missed a field goal, that’s pretty special.”

Osseo opened the scoring on a 51-yard touchdown pass from Malik Gaillard to Armstrong, who finished the game with 10 receptions for 139 yards in the game.

The Orioles finished the season 9-3 and won the second football championship in school history but first in the Prep Bowl era. The first came in 1970. 

More Prep Bowl Coverage:

Osseo Wins 2015 6A Prep Bowl Championship - Nov 13, 2015 05:39PM
Osseo 1986 A Look Back - Nov 13, 2015 02:37AM
Osseo Preparations for Prep Bowl Complete - Nov 12, 2015 09:32PM
Osseo Completes Fourth Quarter Comeback; Advances to Prep Bowl - Nov 06, 2015 12:19AM

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