PORTLAND, Mich. (WLNS) – It doesn’t get much better than catching the game-winning touchdown against a reigning state champion.
Just ask Portland’s Ethan Patrick.
With 22 seconds remaining in the game, Patrick caught a pass from quarterback Haden Getchell in the corner of the endzone, to give the Red Raiders a 20-17 lead over DeWitt. Portland would win the game by that same score and improve to 2-0 on the young season.
“Haden just threw the ball in the corner of the endzone, I just dove at it, and was inbounds and caught it. It was a surreal feeling,” Patrick said at practice on Wednesday. “There was a lot of people doubting us, thinking we weren’t going to win that game.”
The 6’0 senior wasn’t just making on offense against the Panthers. On the defensive side of the ball, he was also showing off his ballhawk abilities. In the second half, he intercepted a pass for the second straight game.
“He’s been a three-year varsity starter for us. Works really hard in the off-season,” Portland coach John Novara said. “He’s a confident kid, and he should be with the work that he puts in.”
Patrick showed on Thursday night against DeWitt, he can be a real problem for opposing defenses when he gets the ball in his hands. The speed he showed off against the Panthers is something he worked on in the offseason, by joining the Raider track team.
“Last year was the first year that he ran track, just to gain some speed. He’s got some aspirations of playing college football, so he did all the work that he needed to do to perform like he had Thursday night,” Novara said.
“He went to football camps, college camps, this summer, and he’d come back and say what his 40-yard-dash time was and I was kind of mind-blown. I thought it was awesome,” Getchell said.
That speed was on full display in the third quarter, when Patrick took a pass from Getchell 74 yards to the house.
“I knew that there were some DeWitt players behind me and I just had to keep running, so I ran to the corner of the endzone at an angle. And Haden threw a great ball,” Patrick said.
Portland will look to keep its momentum rolling from Week Two into Week Three when CAAC White foe Ionia comes to town Friday night.