Scott Beats Dixie, Bellevue Romps Over Dayton, St. X Rolls Over Cov Cath, & Other Highlights
For only the second time in nearly three decades, Scott defeated Dixie Heights on the football field – this time, 36-7 Friday night at Dixie’s Rice Mountjoy Stadium on the strength of three touchdowns by senior running back Roberto London.
But, the Eagles’ win and subsequent 2-0 start was not without potential subplots: Fellow senior back Deondre Pleasant, originally injured in a preseason scrimmage vs. Lloyd, tweaked his ankle in the first quarter being twisted down fielding a punt. According to Scott Head Coach Dan Woolley, “this early in the season it’s more precaution to keep him out. We’re using these first five games to try to get better. I’ve been telling the kids since January, if we’re 0-5 or 5-0, I don’t care as long as we improve. He’s a difference maker, definitely could’ve helped us in this game but at the same time, we’re looking long term,” he said.
Then it was more salt on the wound for Scott. Following Pleasant’s exit from the game, senior quarterback Danny Fitzgerald fumbled the shotgun snap deep in this own territory and the Colonels recovered for what turned out to be their only score of the night, tying the game at 7.
After an Eagles three-and-out and a bad snap that forced the punter to a kick that netted only a few positive yards, Dixie took over at the Eagles’ 34. Senior quarterback Gunther Faeth ran around the left side for 31 yards down to the Scott three. On the ensuing play, Faeth was hit immediately and fumbled. Eagles’ senior defensive back Jordan Velasquez scooped up the football, taking it 97 yards for a Scott score and a 14-7 lead. Dixie received the ball back but was unable to coax any momentum its way.
Only a few ticks into the second, Faeth was sacked inside his own 25, fumbled, and defensive tackle Ron Rice landed on the bouncing football in the end zone to give his team a 20-7 lead (it missed the extra point.)
The Colonels’ next possession progressed down to the Scott one. When Faeth was stuffed at the line on fourth-and-one, the Eagles took over. On its first play from scrimmage, London (16 carries, 149 yards) took the handoff 99 yards for a touchdown. The senior also converted the two-point conversion with a two-yard run and a 28-7 margin, a lead the Eagles took into halftime.
At the midway point of the third, Dixie put together one of its deeper drives of the night. Taking over at midfield, senior running back Keegan Barmore took a screen pass 11 yards to the Scott 39-yard line. Barmore advanced another screen six yards. On third-and-four, junior Cameron Barrett gave the Colonels a first down at the Eagles’ 24. But their momentum ceased. More pointedly, it steadily regressed. Following two quarterback sacks, an incompletion and an illegal procedure penalty, Dixie found itself facing a fourth down and 40.
Each team exchanged punts and the score remained unchanged until a few seconds into the final quarter. London again found the end zone for his third and final touchdown of the evening and a 29-point lead, 36-7.
“2-0 versus quality teams, that’s the most important thing and we upgraded our schedule to make sure we were better come district and playoff time,” Woolley said. “Win, lose or draw, we’re going to be better because we played Dixie Heights and New Cath.”
Scott travels to face Newport next Friday while Dixie looks to rebound at Milford.
Bellevue 35, Dayton 0
For the 136th time, these two rivals appeared together on the football field in the Battle for the Paddle. The Bellevue Tigers had little trouble with the neighboring Greendevils, routing Dayton 35-0 and starting the season 2-0 for the first time since 2008.
Dayton drops to 0-2 on the season.
Bellevue committed to a running game with 45 run plays compared to just two pass plays on the night. Dayton, on the other hand, had a hard time getting anything going, even after a fumble recovery in good field position early in the first half. The team turned the ball over in the red zone once and couldn't cross into the end zone another time after getting inside the 10. The Greendevils moved fewer than 200 yards on the night.
After going to the locker room at halftime with a 14-0 lead, the Tigers put up four more touchdowns in the second half. Adam Hazeres led BHellevue with 149 rushing yards and a touchdown. Cameron Chase added 95 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Tucker Thomas ran for 80.
Dayton's Dylan Adams accounted for more than half of the Greendevils' offense.
Bellevue is 2-0 and hosts undefeated Brossart next week while Dayton, 0-2, will look for its first win when Pendleton Co. comes to town next week.
Cincinnati St. Xavier 57, Covington Catholic 7
“That was easy,” was the chant coming from the stands of the St. Xavier student section in the newly remodeled Nippert Stadium at the University of Cincinnati as the Bombers quickly annihilated Cov Cath in route to a 57-7 trouncing in the Skyline Crosstown Showdown series.
The Colonels were simply outmatched in every phase to the much larger St. X squad that only allowed Cov Cath to rack up 21 total yards on the night while amassing 346 themselves. The score got so out of hand so quickly, that the Colonel faithful had to be astonished to look up at the scoreboard and see their team down 50-0 at halftime. It was reported that the St. Xavier scorekeepers could not remember another occasion where the Bombers score 50 points in one half.
The misery began almost immediately for head coach Eddie Eviston’s team as they had their punt block on the first possession that resulted in a safety and started the bleeding with a 2-0 lead. From there, St. X tailback Sean Prophit ran it in for 12 yards for the Bombers first touchdown and broke the seal. St. X would go on to score four more times in the first quarter alone.
Cov Cath is by no means a team made up of small players, but St. Xavier’s offensive line looked more like Ohio State than any high school team. Even the Bomber’s tight ends are big, strong athletes that proved to be mismatches for the Colonels. If being bigger wasn’t enough, the perennial powerhouse of Cincinnati’s GCL League showed plenty of speed as well, as players like Prophit and quarterback Pete Rumpke were simply able to run past the Colonels secondary on long runs in the first half. The bombers racked up 215 yards on the ground on 30 carries for an average of over 7 yards per rush.
Conversely, the Colonels could get nothing going on the ground as the offensive line was routinely pushed backwards at the point of attack from the brutish bomber defensive front. This often caused the Cov Cath ball carrier to run into the backs of his own linemen and were swallowed up before any ground could be gained. The lack of rushing presence in their offensive attack made passing downs predictable where sophomore quarterback A.J. Mayer managed just 6 passing yards and one completion and threw for two interceptions. It was only Mayer’s second career start at quarterback and while he remains inexperienced to some degree, even a four-year starter would have had major problems against such a formidable foe in St. Xavier. Mayer did play well a week prior in his career debut against Ryle in a tough 35-28 loss to Ryle.
Losing to GCL schools is not all that unfamiliar to the Colonels. Last year they were thumped at Moeller, 39-0, and also lost at home to Moeller in 2013, 45-7. The GCL has a long and rich football tradition that has produced numerous NFL players like stars linebacker Luck Kuechly (St. Xavier) and Kyle Rudolph (Elder) among others. Last season, then Coach Dave Wirth said that the big losses to the GCL team early in the season played dividends later on in the postseason, and the same could be true for Eviston’s current team. The new head coach who was an assistant at Georgetown College last year is still seeking his first team with CCH as he is now 0-2 on the season.
Despite St. Xavier’s tremendous beef along the line, the Bombers capitalized on the area outside the hash marks on offense where their dual quarterback system of Sean Clifford and Pete Rumpke would roll out to the flats to where they then would decide to either throw or run. Clifford was more of the passing option as he went 9-11 passing for 102 yards and two touchdowns while Rumpke racked up the yardage on the ground thanks in large part to a keeper that went 64 yards and a score. That run made the score 40-0, 20 second into the second quarter.
Although the scoring settled down in the second half, the first half was a blowout of historic proportions. The Colonels suffered five turnovers and had a punt blocked; they fumbled the ball four times and gave it up on three of those occasions. Sometimes, the ball was fumbled on the center/quarterback exchange before a play could even properly develop. The only Cov Cath score on the evening came in the fourth quarter when Logan Beagle ran it in from two yards out to cut the lead to 50, 57-7.
The important thing for Cov Cath to do is put the loss behind them and focus on their next challenge which comes in the form of another Cincinnati team at Sycamore September 4.
-Story by Bryan Burke, photos by Bob Burke
Holmes fell at Paris, 13-7; .... Highlands bounced back from its shocking loss at Cooper last week, beating Campbell Co., 38-15; .... Holy Cross picked up its second straight win to start the season, doubling up Walton-Verona, 28-14; .... Ludlow pulled away fast from Bracken Co. and won 24-6; .... Beechwood won big over Lloyd, 41-14; .... Brossart took care of Cincinnati Aiken, 26-22; .... Cooper sent Newport Catholic home with its second loss of the year, 35-0; .... Conner dropped Boone Co., 43-6; .... Ryle finished off Lexington Catholic, 31-24; .... Simon Kenton took care of Lexington Bryan Station, 52-35.