, Potters 7
Compiled by Frank “Digger” Dawson
Cambridge September 19, 2014
<4>Mercy, mercy. For the second week in a row, the East Liverpool High School Potters suffered the wrath of the Ohio High School Athletic Association's new "Mercy Rule" in a 40-7 loss at Cambridge High School’s McFarland Stadium before a crowd of some 2,000, primarily Bobcat fans.
Winning the opening coin toss, the hosts elected to kick off, a wise move for them, but one that would spell disaster for Coach Josh Ludwig and his crew. On the third EL play, junior running back Dillon Reynolds suffered a severe ankle sprain and two plays later, QB Austin Mayfield was picked off by the Cats’ Errik Snell at his own 35.
However, the Cats were forced to punt, but the Potters returned the favor less than seven minutes into the contest setting, Coach Kevin Gunn and his crew up on the EL side of the 45 from where the Moe Latham show commenced. Carrying on eight of the next nine plays, the 5’10”, 180-pound senior running back picked up all but two stripes in a 55-yard effort that saw his team go up 6-0. The extra point attempt was wide.
A determined Josh Ludwig and his team returned the ensuing kickoff back to the 33 on the effort of Kade Reynolds, but four plays later were forced to punt, and another misfortune was about to unfold.
Setting up on his own 35, QB Josh Lewis found Errik Snell on the second play from scrimmage for a 65-yard TD completion and following a successful conversion kick by Adam Fox, it was 13-0.
The never-say-die Potters continued to put up a fight, but, unfortunately, were unable to advance on their next possession, punting from their own 31 as the game moved into the second quarter.
Nine plays and 67 yards later, Lewis found Chandler Burris-Jones from one yard out, and after Fox split the uprights, it was 20-0 with 7:26 remaining in the first half.
The Potters finally got on the scoreboard with 2:16 left to play before the intermission on an 80-yard, ten-play effort that saw Kade Reynolds go the final yard, followed by Ryan Lilly's conversion kick and it was 20-7.
Cambridge came right back with a seven-play 58-yard drive of their own before the end of the second quarter when Lewis found Jake Pershing from 24 yards out with 29 seconds on the clock. Fox made it 27-7 as the teams headed for the locker rooms.
The score that put the mercy rule into effect came at the 9:42 mark in the fourth quarter when Justin Mayfield punted to Snell, who promptly returned the kick 44 yards for a score followed by Fox's conversion kick to make it 40-7.
The Bobcats had scored previously midway through the third quarter, thanks to a 67-yard pass interception return by Jordan Watson and the conversion kick by Fox, who ended the night making five out of six extra point attempts.
They say that speed kills,” said disappointed Coach Josh Ludwig outside the Potter locker room in the shadows of Cambridge McFarland Stadium. “Moe Latham must have gained nearly 200 yards. We just couldn’t catch him.
“ We were pleased with the development of Austin Mayfield at quarterback. He ran for close to 75 yards, which won’t show in the statistics because of sacks, but he was impressive.”
The ream traveled by chartered bus, thanks to an anonymous donor, and was treated to pizza before the long ride home, courtesy of the Blue and White Touchdown Club
Dillon Reynolds was expected to be out for awhile with a high ankle sprain, but otherwise, the team had minimal injuries.