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Coatesville becomes first District 1 team in history with 700 wins

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CALN >> For the Coatesville High School football program, the years and the wins have ticked off one by one, piling up like a mountain. On a humid Friday evening at the Coatesville Area Multi-Purpose Stadium, one more summit was climbed in grand fashion.

Aaron Young ran for two scores, while Ricky Ortega accounted for three scores as the Red Raiders turned back Cumberland Valley, 35-19.

In the small picture, the win moved Coatesville to 3-0 on the season and kept them among the top-raked teams in Pennsylvania.

But, in the bigger picture, it was more important, as the Red Raiders collected their 700th victory in school history, becoming the first school in District 1 to hit that impressive milestone.

“Coming in and knowing we were 0-2 to Cumberland Valley and come in and beat them for our 700th win is huge,” said Ortega “We’ve been preaching that all week.”

Ricky’s father, head coach Matt Ortega paid homage to the coaches that came before him.

“It is awesome, to win 700 games and to give credit to all the great coaches that came before me,” he said. It’s an honor to be the coach for the 700th win and being the first team in the district to do that. It goes back to the tradition at Coatesville and the great coaches who have been here. That tradition is what got us here.”

The win was also a bit of revenge over the Eagles, who beat the Red Raiders the last two seasons.

The struggles continue for the Region 3 power, which is rebuilding after suffering major graduation losses last year, falling to 0-3 for the first time in over a decade.

Coatesville received the opening kickoff, and right away, it was evident the Red Raiders could do whatever they wanted to do on offense. They marched 52 yards in just five plays to take the early lead, Young took a late option pitch from Ortega, broke into the open, juked a defender, and cut all the way to the right side of the field to score on a 33-yard run.

“We took what they gave us,” said Young. “They gave us the run at certain times, then when the run wasn’t there, we took advantage with the pass. We took advantage of everything.

Cumberland Valley punted after its first posession yielded one first down, one of the top offenses in the state came back to inflict more damage. The seven-play drive was topped off by Ortega breaking off a 28-yard touchdown run to make it 14-0, seven minutes into the game.

The passing game then took over, on the first play of the second quarter, Ortega hit Dapree Bryant on a bubble screen, and he took care of the rest, speeding 52 yards to paydirt for a 21-0 lead.

A quick Cumberland Valley posession turned the ball back over to the Red Raiders on their own 45-yard line. Ortega hit Dymer Miller on a slant, he thwarted his defende with a well-placed stiff-arm, then waltzed in the end zone to complete the 55-yard score.

“We have so many skilled players, they try to take away the perimeter with Dapree, but Dymere and Frankie (Sherman) can score from anywhere on the field,” Ortega said. “I’m just so blessed to have these receivers and have him (Young in the backfield.

The Eagles did take advantage of the lone Coatesville turnover to get on the board. They recovered a muffed punt on their 47. QB Jared Plessinger hit a wide-open Stone Hoffman, who rumbled 42 yards to the Coatesville 11. Six plays later, Connor Madison burrowed in from the two, and the half ended, 28-7.

The wing-T offense came to life to start the third. The Eagles went on a 19-play, 77-yard march that took up almost 10 minutes. 

Coatesville shrugged that off and used Young and Ortega to run on the Eagles and put another TD on the board as Young powered in from eight.

CV went on another long drive, this time, a 13-play drive paid off with a 13 yard scoring pass from Plessinger to Hoffman to make it 35-19.

The Red Raiders then ran out the final five minutes to stay undefeated as the beginning of the Ches-Mont League slate looms next week with a trip to Bishop Shanahan.

“We’re real excited about that,” said Ortega. “We’ll going to keep working and keep coming.”

NOTES >> Individually, Young gained 179 yards on 18 carries. Ortega was 13 for 108 and threw for 168 yards. … Bryant, one of the best receivers in the area, caught four passes for 78 yards. … Even though they only had the ball twice in the second half, the Red Raiders still outgained CV, 471-223. … Nik Thompson had 1 1/2 sacks to lead the defense. 

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