Mountain View avoids trap game, beats Pendleton

PENDLETON — Upset-minded Pendleton scored on its first possession Friday night, but Mountain View answered with a momentum-stealing drive and went on to claim a 21-6 Class 5A Special District 1 football win.

Star junior running back Jonas Larson rushed for 230 yards on a whopping 44 carries and scored all three Mountain View touchdowns as the No. 3-ranked Cougars stayed undefeated at 4-0 in SD1 and 6-0 overall.

“We kind of saw this as a possible trap game, coming off a big win last week (35-13 at Summit) and going out on the road,” said Mountain View coach Brian Crum. “Our kids were resilient, that was good to see.”

Pendleton (2-2, 3-3) took a 6-0 lead just over two minutes into the game on a 12-yard touchdown run by Jon Swaggart.

After the ensuing kickoff, the Cougars countered — forcefully if not quickly. Mountain View drove 93 yards on a 6½-minute march capped by Larson’s 2-yard TD run. Cam Houchin’s point-after kick put the visitors ahead to stay at 7-6.

Larson tacked on another score from a yard out with just under two minutes left in the half, which ended with the Cougars up 14-6. After a scoreless third quarter, Larson iced it for Mountain View with a 15-yard touchdown run that made it 21-6 with just 4:42 left in the game.

The Cougars are at home next week to play a struggling Ridgeview team that is winless through six weeks of the season.

“With another Central Oregon opponent, you always have to be careful,” Crum cautioned with a look ahead to the Ravens. “We’re lucky … I think we have a mature team, and we’ve been able to avoid the pitfalls so far.”