PLAIN CITY — The Fremont football team was staring at the depressing prospect of a fourth straight loss to open up the season, but kept positive and ultimately rallied late to score a big 28-24 win over Northridge on Friday.
With 1:58 remaining, Northridge kicker Logan Smith booted through a 24-yard field goal to give his team a 24-21 lead, putting the Silverwolves in an unenviable spot. That spot was made more difficult when the ensuing kickoff pinned Fremont deep, although according to Silverwolves’ coach Ross Arnold, his players were confident in their ability to work it out and come away with a win.
“The attitude was really good from our players coming off the field, actually,” Arnold said. “Players know that we’re really just about four plays away from being undefeated on the year, so they kept their composure, like we’ve discussed, and were really positive they could get it done.”
The Silverwolves marched it clear past midfield, but then encountered some trouble and soon found themselves fraught with a 4th-and-8 predicament from Northridge’s 44 yard line. It was then when Fremont quarterback, Mitch Stratford, found receiver Brandon Baray breaking free in coverage in what culminated with a touchdown pass with just 34 seconds left.
“Brandon is our fastest guy and he got open on a vertical route. Mitch found him and man, that was just really big,” Arnold said.
Turns out Stratford found Baray a bit earlier for a 46-yard touchdown pass, which tied the game at 21-21 early in the fourth quarter.
“We’re fortunate to have Brandon. That’s for sure,” Arnold said. “He’s just a guy who makes plays with his speed and he made a play, along with Mitch when we needed it most. They just kept with it and delivered, which was obviously a big moment for our team.”
Good moments have been sparse for Fremont, as evidenced by its 0-3 record entering last Friday’s game, although as mentioned, all of those games could very well have been placed in the win column.
“All three of them were tough losses, but losses we took good lessons from,” Arnold said. “We’ve been turning the ball over too much, but we were able to fix that some on Friday, and that kept us in it, along with several other things.”
The win puts Fremont standing at 1-1 in Region 1 play, which is a far cry from 0-2, according to Arnold.
“It keeps us in it,” Arnold said. “You start 0-2 and that really makes it a tough hill to climb with how competitive our region is.”
Fremont will work to keep it rolling hosting Clearfield next week, with Arnold hopeful his players were able to do away with the aspect that failed them over their first three outings.
“Little things tend to become big things when they don’t have to be,” Arnold said. “We talked a lot about fixing the little things, and when you win, those things become little, like they should, if that makes sense. We just need to keep it going and I’m confident in our kids. Friday’s win was a big one.”