Modern football is a passing game. The quarterback is the most important player on the field, and he facilitates the ball to the rest of the offense.
Nelsonville-York wasn’t interested in playing “modern” football throughout its 42-16 win against Meigs on Friday Night at Boston Field.
The Buckeyes (1-2) ran 40 plays in the first half and threw the ball once.
Head coach Rusty Richards changed the game plan to a more run-heavy offense to help out his struggling quarterback, Drew Carter. But when Meigs couldn’t get a stop, Richards had no reason to throw the ball.
“Our goal was just to try to help him out a little bit,” Richards said. “I didn’t really think we would run that much, but I kept asking my kids if the ball was heavy and they kept saying, ‘no, give it to me again.’”
Richards kept giving his playmakers the ball behind two fullbacks and an offensive line that bullied the Marauders’ front seven. Carter didn’t even attempt a pass until halfway through the second quarter.
Behind a rushing attack led by Kobi Bennington, Hudson Stalder and Colton Snyder, the Buckeyes scored 28 points in the first half.
“I don't know how many different kids we ran back there,“ Richards said. “It seemed like whoever we gave it to it seemed like they produced.”
Bennington and Snyder were the big scorers for the night, with two touchdowns each. Carter rolled out to throw his second pass late in the half but tucked the ball instead and took it in for a touchdown of his own.
The offense also received help from the defense and special teams.
Lineman Tucker Levering blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone, and Critter McDonald had an interception and a fumble recovery.
“It was a good, team win,” Richards said. “Special teams was good, everything was good.”
In the third quarter, Carter got the chance to throw the ball since Meigs put eight people near the line of scrimmage. Carter, without having to carry the offense, had one of his best drives of the season. The junior quarterback led the Buckeyes 87 yards down the field and went 4-5 for 78 yards on the drive.
His main target was Ethan Gail, who caught three passes for 63 of those yards. Gail is a player the Buckeyes need to step up without one of their best players Brandon Phillips, who is out for the season with an ankle injury.
Richards was happy with the way his team responded after losing its first two games of the season.
“The kids played well tonight; they responded,” Richards said. “They haven’t quit, that’s the biggest thing.”
The Buckeyes will try to build off their success when they travel to Vinton County next week.