Granville overcomes Licking Valley in defensive dogfight< < Back to
NEWARK, Ohio (WOUB) — It was a beautiful fall Ohio night in Licking County as the boys of Licking Valley and Granville High School came together to play what was a very defensive game.
The first quarter started out slow, with both teams exchanging a few punts on the first drives of the game. Other than a Licking Valley interception, which they were unable to turn into points, the rest of the first quarter was filled with penalty flags and punts. The punting game was nothing to sneeze at, however, with Granville pining LV on their own one yard line, and Licking Valley pining Granville inside their own 10 yard line on back to back drives.
The second quarter was much of the same, with very little offensive action until the final minutes. Granville was able to put together a solid drive with the help of a big fourth down conversion, and a controversial unsportsmanlike penalty. The Licking Valley defense was able to hold Granville to just a field goal, making it 3-0 at halftime.
A slow start for the Granville offense coming out of halftime gave the ball quickly to Licking Valley. The LV offense had a small breath of life in their first drive coming out of halftime. After marching down into field goal range, the Panthers of Licking Valley were faced with a fourth and two, which became a fourth and seven after a false start. LV rolled the dice and went for it on fourth down, where quarterback Hayden Rodgers threw an incompletion. It did not matter, however, because a defensive holding penalty gave the Panthers an automatic first down. A few plays later, Rodgers was able to punch it in from one yard out, making it 7-3 in favor of Licking Valley
Granville was quick to respond quickly on their next drive. A fast paced offense caught LV off guard, and Dante Varrasso hauled in a 55 yard touchdown pass to get the lead back just 56 seconds later.
A few drives later Licking Valley is able to hold Granville to a 39 yard Noah Musick field goal, making it 13-7 with just 4:42 left in the game.
On the next drive, an unfortunate intentional grounding penalty caused Licking Valley to face a long third and 30, where they gave up a fumble to the Granville defense, giving them great field position. The LV defense was able to hold Granville to just a field goal. 16-7 Granville with 49 seconds left.
Now a two-possession game, this one seemed out of reach for the Panthers. Some clutch catches from WR Kam Walker helped lead his team down to the 3 yd line, where he caught a late touchdown pass, but it was too little too late, with Granville clinching the 16-14 victory.