St. Clairsville Seizes Momentum, Downs Creek
WINTERSVILLE — For the second straight week, St. Clairsville needed a little more than a quarter to fully get its bearings straight.
And just like last week, once the Red Devils seized momentum, there was nothing the opposing team could do.
St. Clairsville scored on six consecutive offensive possessions to begin the game and outside of a 24-play, 10-plus minute scoring drive, allowed very little en route to a 41-7 victory against Indian Creek Thursday evening at Kettlewell Memorial Stadium.
“We knew Indian Creek would come out with a lot of emotion and after we drove and scored to begin the game, you can lose your own edge,” St. Clairsville head coach Brett McLean said. “We allowed that to happen and they came right back and grabbed the momentum with an awesome drive.”
Indian Creek, which is now 1-4 on the season, clearly wanted to limit the number of times the Red Devils touched the ball.
“I thought our kids battled against a really good football team,” Indian Creek head coach Andrew Connor said. “I am proud of our kids’ efforts. Once things got away from us, St. Clairsville was able to take advantage of some things that got away from us. All I can ask is for my kids to go out and play hard, and I thought they did that throughout.”
And for the better part of a quarter, the Redskins did just that thanks to a 23-play, 72-yard scoring drive that ate 10:26 off the game clock and featured three, fourth-down conversions before senior Jeremy Brown plunged in from 2 yards out.
“There were little things we didn’t like that we need to clean up (defensively) because we can’t keep having slow starts or getting some success and then slowing down,” McLean said. “We need to find a way to have the throttle down right away because we can’t keep thinking we’re going to be able to come from behind.”
That drive clearly woke up the Red Devils, who are now 5-0 and will close out the pre-tournament portion of the regular season one week from tonight at Harrison Central.
St. Clairsville answered right back with a nine-play drive of its own, which was capped by rugged senior fullback Will Balgo going into the end zone from 3 yards out. Jake Bolyard’s second PAT kick made it 14-7.
Indian Creek was stuffed on downs on the ensuing possession and nine plays later the Red Devils had sprung open the floodgates. On a beautifully designed and executed throw-back pass, senior quarterback Tyler Tonkovich found Carson Woodford all alone for an 11-yard touchdown with 17.5 seconds to go in the half.
The onslaught carried into the third quarter where the Red Devils scored three more times. The first came when Tonkovich found junior speedster Colin Oberdick in stride for a 67-yard touchdown.
Following an interception by Jaren Starks, St. C. handed the ball to junior Jacob Jordan, who weaved through the Redskins defense 39 yards untouched for the touchdown. Balgo punched in the 2-point conversion.
Jordan capped the scoring with a 2-yard drive, which was set up when junior Drew Sefsick found Oberdick for another big gainer in the passing game.
“We got a lot of kids involved (offensively),” McLean said. “We got a lot of kids a lot of different kind of touches and looks, which I believe will pay dividends down the road. And a lot of that came in the heat of the action. Hopefully getting some new kids involved helps build some depth and keep kids excited.”
All told, the Red Devils outgained the Redskins, 389-125. Tonkovich, who got the scoring started with an 8-yard scamper, passed for 158 and spread the ball to six different receivers.
Junior Logan Shields turned in yet another solid performance on both sides of the ball. He caught a pass for 32 yards and rushed a team best nine times for 44 yards.
OVAC 4A Semifinal
Oak Glen 6, Indian Creek 1
NEW MANCHESTER — Brooklyn Watts recorded a hat trick in the first half. Brooklyn Loveland and Kami Ward also scored in the first and Reece Enochs tact on to help lift Oak Glen over Indian Creek in the OVAC 4A semifinal.
Oak Glen faces top-seeded St. Clairsville for the Class 4A title at noon Saturday at St. Clairsville.
Union Local d. St. Clairsville 25-19, 25-12, 25-15
MORRISTOWN — The Jets swept the Red Devils behind 23 assists, seven digs, four aces and four kills from senior Casey Kildow.
Torre Kildow also made an impact with 18 kills, 11 digs and nine assists, while Reagan Vinskovich added five kills, five blocks and four digs.
Chloe Biancavelli paced St. Clairsville with 14 assists and six digs, while Alexis Thoburn tallied five kills and five digs and Lydia Wees added five kills and four blocks.
Fort Frye d. Tyler Consolidated 26-24, 25-18, 25-21
SISTERSVILLE — Regan Smith compiled 11 kills, 20 digs, 15 assists and seven points to lead Tyler Consolidated but Fort Frye came away with the win.
Carleigh Phillips amassed 10 kills, 12 digs, nine points, nine assists and four blocks for the Silver Knights and teammate Landry Buchanan gave a solid performance with seven points and seven digs.
Monroe Central d. Barnesville 25-14, 25-15, 25-19
WOODSFIELD — Abby Thompson turned in 14 points and seven kills to lead Monroe Central past Barnesville.
Kynzi Bishop delivered eight kills and six points for the Seminoles (9-3), while Alexa Marley tallied 12 assists, 10 digs and nine points and Kalista Friday added 19 digs.
Halle Markovich paced the Shamrocks with eight kills.
Edison d. Buckeye Local 25-8, 25-16, 25-8
RICHMOND — Gracie Phillips had a big night with 26 points and Karissa Speedy garnered 14 asissts as Edison swept Buckeye Local.
Corinne Freeman finished with eight kills for the Wildcats, while Grayce Andreozzi and Savanna Ankrom each turned in four kills.
(Steubenville CC, Par 36)
John Marshall 176, Steubenville 201
STEUBENVILLE — Colton Sprowls led John Marshall to victory over Steubenville by shooting a 41 to earn match medalist honors.
Matthew Douglas and Mason Orndorff each turned in cards of 44.
Bubby Reese paced Big Red with a 47.
(at St. Marys GC, Par 34)
Ritchie County 160, John Marshall 166
ST. MARYS — Ordorff shot a 38 to lead John Marshall in a loss to Ritchie County.
(at Spring Hills, Par 36)
John Marshall 210, Edison 216
JEFFERSON — Lakyn Parker shot a 49 to lead John Marshall to victory over Edison.
Makayla Wells paced the Wildcats with a 48 to earn match medalist.