Tri-Valley Takes MVL Battle Over Philo

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Emotions were high this week for the Scotties and the Electrics. For Philo, this game meant redemption. For Tri-Valley this game meant solidifying its current No. 1 rank in the league. For both teams, this game meant that it was going to help determine which of the two would take home the title of Muskingum Valley League Champions again.

Which begs the question, what exactly happened when these two currently top ranked, undefeated, and returning league champions faced each other head to head?

Tri-Valley repeated victory against Philo with a final score that had larger win margin than expected given last year’s final score of 7-0. The final score at the Jack Anderson Stadium was 31-10.

In order to prepare for the one of its harder games of the season, Tri-Valley’s Coach, Coach Buttermore, told his players to go in with a “business-like mindset.” The Scotties attacked the field with that goal in mind, and speed on their first couple of plays.

Within just the first thirty seconds, the Scotties were five yards away from touchdown territory. That was until Lane Deal for Philo jumped out and caught the attempted touchdown pass for the first interception of the night. Nick Hoffer, had the second interception for Philo in the third quarter of the game, again preventing Tri-Valley from scoring on the 19-yard line.

However, Philo was not able to get the ball rolling after the first interception. Tri-Valley’s defense shut out Philo’s offense forcing them to have only one first down until the last three minutes of the first half. Part of the reason Philo had difficulty bringing the ball into touchdown territory was that the Scotties defense. They successfully penetrated the front line sacking Isaac Gill five times throughout the game, which was one of Coach Buttermore’s goals to shutdown Isaac Gill on both sides of the ball.

Isaac Gill was able to break away from the aggressive defense, under pressure with no time on the clock at the end of the first half. He broke away from the pocket, avoiding another sack, ran towards the side lines, and found Aaron Philip in the corner of the end zone for a three-yard touchdown pass.

As predicted, it was the battle of the quarterbacks and Andrew Newsom made that known early. Six minutes into the game he ran for six yards into the end zone. But in the beginning of the second quarter, Brock Luburgh sacked Newsom hoping to throw him off. It did not. Newsom threw a spiral to Greg Nolder who jukes out Philo’s defense with a spin move for a 14-0 lead. Like Luburgh, Hoffer sacked Newsom again on Tri-Valley’s next possession, but again did not shutdown the Scotties. Chase Dinan stunned the crowd with a successful 42-yard field goal right down the middle of the posts.

The first half of the game ended with a score of 17-7 Tri-Valley in the lead. Philo began to step it up and found ways to start to successfully gain yards down the field, making it seem like it was going to be the nail biting game that was expected. But that was not the case. The score remained stagnant the third quarter, but the last few minutes, like the end of the second quarter, were not.

Isaac Gill leap frog jumped over the pack to gain a few yards. A couple quick plays later he ran out of the pocket and passed to Hunter Adolph to keep their offensive drive alive. Philo fans were chanting “Isaac, Isaac, Isaac!” to motivate him to score. Gill’s helmet rolled off the field as he attempted to dive into the end zone, and the third quarter ended in suspense with the ball on the two-yard line for the Electrics. But their efforts fell short. They had to settle for a field goal, and the rest of the game was all about the Scotties.

Tri-Valley found the end zone two more times, and yes one of the touchdowns was in the last few minutes of the game. Andrew Newsom threw a bullet down field to Jake McLoughlin for a 51-yard touchdown play. Fifty-one was Newsom’s magic number in the fourth quarter because with one minute left, he sprinted 51 yards to the fans “Oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah” chant ringing in his ears.

Tri-Valley remains undefeated and Philo took its first league loss. The Scotties will play New Lexington at home and the Electrics will play Sheridan at home next Friday.