Late score sends Cards past Pacers


The defenses controlled things most of the night, but the Thomas Worthington offense ended both halves well on the way to a 17-10 OCC win over host Delaware Hayes Friday night.

The Pacers (3-5, 1-4) took an early 7-3 lead when Blake Eiland found Nabil Abdus-salaam streaking down the middle of the field for a 58-yard touchdown midway through the second quarter. The Cardinals (3-5, 2-3), though — who broke the scoring seal with a 23-yard field goal from Owen Graham at the 7:11 mark of the second — regained the lead 31 seconds before the break when Nate Bourghese hauled in a 10-yard TD pass from James Gaiters.

After a scoreless third quarter, Kyle Klumpp got Hayes back to even with a 26-yard field goal midway through the fourth, but Thomas secured what proved to be the game-winning score on the ensuing series thanks to a five-yard run from Sharon Phipps with 1:56 to play.

Eiland led Hayes with 100 yards on the ground while Abdus-salaam finished with three receptions for 77 yards and the Pacers’ lone TD.

Olentangy Liberty 24, Olentangy 21

Trent Maddox found Caleb Gossett for a pair of touchdowns, the second of which gave the Braves a 21-17 lead with 6:18 to go in the fourth, but Jackson Roberts answered with an eight-yard score with 1:06 left to help the visiting Patriots stay perfect Friday night in Lewis Center.

The game was back and fourth throughout. Liberty (8-0, 3-0) scored the first 10 points with special teams and defense. Keaton Butler connected on a 25-yard field goal with 6:10 left in the first and Ryan Ritter returned an interception to the house a few plays later to make it 10-0 with 5:18 left in the opening quarter.

Olentangy (4-4, 1-2) battled back with a 15-yard scoring strike from Maddox to Gossett early in the third and, after Brennan Rowe put the Patriots up 17-7 with a one-yard run, Maddox found Jake Coleman for a 40-yard score to cut the deficit to 17-14 with 11:17 left in the game.

The Braves moved the ball through the air, with Maddox completing 20 of his 34 passes for 317 yards and the three scores, but managed just 26 yards on the ground.

Roberts led Liberty with 180 yards passing while Aidan Kenley had 12 carries for 48 yards.

Olentangy Berlin 32, Dublin Scioto 29

Jacob Moeller found Corey Hill for two fourth-quarter touchdowns to lead the Bears to a key OCC win over the host Irish Friday night in Dublin.

The first — an eight-yard strike with 2:14 left in the game — gave Berlin (5-3, 4-1) a 25-22 lead.

Scioto (4-4, 3-2) answered in a hurry, regaining the edge when Chad Ray hit Xavier Lopes for a 25-yard score with 43 ticks left on the fourth-quarter clock, but the Bears weren’t done.

Moeller and Hill connected on a 47-yard pitch-and-catch to get into position before teaming up for the game-winner — a 27-yarder — with 16 seconds left.

Moeller completed 17 of his 28 passes for 236 yards and the two TDs, Hill had five catches for 99 yards and two scores and Johnny Spinner carried the ball 36 times for 231 yards and a touchdown of his own.

New Albany 26, Big Walnut 20

The Golden Eagles took a 17-14 lead into the fourth quarter, but the visiting Eagles scored a pair of touchdowns in the final frame to rally for a league win Friday night in Sunbury.

Big Walnut (4-4, 2-1) answered an early New Albany (5-3, 2-1) touchdown with a 17-yard score by Jagger Barnett and erased a 14-7 halftime deficit when Caden Williams opened the second half with a 51-yard touchdown run.

BW took its lead when Landen Rutkowski hammered home a 25-yard field goal with 6:07 left in the third, but New Albany outscored the Golden Eagles 12-3 in the fourth quarter to cement the win.

Barnett completed 10 of his 24 passes for 136 yards while Zack Barnecut had four grabs for 84 yards.

Reed Hall rushed for 112 yards and two scores to lead New Albany.

Grandview Heights 14, Buckeye Valley 3

The Barons (0-8, 0-5) played well defensively, staying within a score until the fourth, but couldn’t overcome early turnovers en route to a league setback at the hands of the host Bobcats (6-2, 3-2) Friday night in Grandview.

A 36-yard Felipe Scharff field goal with 3:14 left in the second quarter accounted for the BV scoring while Luke Lachey (23-yard reception) and Darrion Davis (48-yard reception) had the Grandview touchdowns. Davis’ smoothed out the scoring summary with 11:24 to play.

Hayes quarterback Blake Eiland (17) finds some running room during the first half of Friday’s OCC showdown against visiting Thomas Worthington. quarterback Blake Eiland (17) finds some running room during the first half of Friday’s OCC showdown against visiting Thomas Worthington. Ben Stroup | Gazette
Liberty, Berlin rally for key league wins

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