COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) -The Cuyahoga Heights Redskins ended the Columbiana Clippers season with a pounding rushing game in a 28-21 win Saturday night at Firestone Park. The loss end the Clippers season at 9-2.
The Redskins would rush the ball 56 times for 287 yards and eat up the game clock in scoring two touchdown in each half of the contest. That time possessing offense kept the Clippers standout quarterback Mitch Davidson from being able to light up the scoreboard.
“The best defense in the world is when you can keep Mitch Davidson on the sideline,” Clippers coach Bob Spaite remarked. “We threw everything at them that you can throw at them. We were blitzing, changing fronts, everything we could do. Give them credit. We could slow them down, but we just couldn’t get the ball off of them.”
“We needed to,” Redskins coach Al Martin remarked about controlling the ball. “They are use to playing a ton of snaps, and their quarterback is awesome, he never makes a mistake. So we really felt like we needed to limit their possessions. they only had two possessions in the first half. So we were able to grind the ball on the ground and we converted a few pass plays.”
The Redskins utilized a 10-play and 16-play drives in the first half to score twice in the first half. The first was a 3-yard run by Lucas D’Orazio at the 7:04 mark of the first quarter, and a 8-yard pass from quarterback Brett Lowther to Dylan Drummond with only 27-seconds remaining before intermission.
The Clippers offense would start to come to life in the second half when Davidson would lead them on a scoring drive midway through the third quarter. With 7:48 left in the quarter, Davidson would de into the end zone from 1-yard out to make it 14-7.
But the Redskins would respond with yet another methodical drive as they traveled 56-yards on 10-plays with D’Orazio scoring his second of three touchdowns on the night. this time it was a 2-yard run, and gave them a 21-7 lead with just 15-second remaining in the third quarter.
The Clippers would answer with Davidson rushing 54-yards down to the Redskins 15-yard line early in the fourth quarter. Four plays later Davidson would find Jake Ward on a 20-yard pass to cut the Redskins lead down to 21-14 with 11:00 left in the game.
But t Clippers could not stop the Redskins punishing rushing attack as they would travel 65-yards to score once again. The 16-play drive concluded with D’Orazio crashing into the end zone from 4-yards out to make it 28-14 with only 2:58 remaining.
The Clippers added a late score on an exciting 35-yard lateral from Jake Ward to Dalton Miller. From the Redskins 46-yard line Davidson hit Ward over the middle for an 11-yard gain. Ward pitched the ball back to Miller as he raced down the left sideline 35-yards for a touchdown. That score with 42-second remaining gave the Clippers once last hope.
Unfortunately, the Clippers on-side kick did not travel the required ten yards, turning the ball over to the Redskins to run out the clock.
The loss was the first for the Clippers since week two against Crestview, ending a eight game streak.
“We new the first three game would tell the tale. These guys didn’t take anything for granted,” Spaite remarked.
An emotional senior receiver Cooper Smith said after the game, “Coach Spaite is more than just a coach to us. He’s a father to us too.
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