BERLIN CENTER, Ohio (WYTV) – Wyatt Larimer has led Western Reserve down the field in just two plays, culminating in a Ryan Demsky 9 yard touchdown reception to give the Blue Devils a quick 7-0 lead over Columbiana.
Following a Columbiana touchdown, Auz Seifert rumbled into the endzone from 46 yards out to give the Blue Devils a 13-7 lead with 4:35 remaining.
Jack Cappabianca’s 34 yard TD run with 1:27 in the first quarter extended the Blue Devil lead to 21-7 after the two point conversion was successful.
“They came out to play,” Clippers senior quarterback Mitch Davidson remarked. “We expected them to come out, but I guess we didn’t show how we wanted to in the first half.”
Clipper QB Mitch Davidson ran in a 3 yard score with 8:22 left in the second quarter to cut the lead to 21-14, Reserve.
Western Reserve’s Kade Hilles hauled in a one yard touchdown pass from Dominic Velasquez with 5:21 remaining in the first half to bring the lead back to double digits, 27-14.
Adam Gatrell pulled in a 55 yard touchdown pass from Larimer with 1:42 left in the first half to give the Blue Devils a 33-14 lead, but it was short-lived.
Zach Phillips’ 70 yard kickoff return for a touchdown pulled Columbiana within two scores with 1:27 remaining in the second quarter, 33-21.
Connor Stacey pulled in a 2 yard pass from Davidson with 9:10 left in the third, closing the gap back to one score, 33-28.
Just 20 seconds later, it was Seifert again for the Blue Devils with a 65 yard romp to pay dirt, extending the lead to 39-28.
But then Davidson, another 43 seconds later, scored from 42 yards out for the third touchdown in just 67 seconds of game time to close the gap again, this time to 39-35.
With 7:23 remaining in the third quarter, another Davidson TD, this time a 26 yard run would give Columbiana its first lead of the game, 42-39.
Western Reserve reclaimed the lead with 2:45 left in the third quarter following a second Cappabianca TD, this time from one yard out creating a 46-42 Blue Devil lead.
But the Clippers would not let the quarter pass without the lead changing hands again. Davidson scored yet again, this time from just a yard out, with :38 remaining to take their second lead of the game, 49-46.
Larimer jumped Reserve back into the lead with :07 remaining in the third quarter with a 42 yard touchdown to bring it to 52-49, Reserve.
Davidson connected with Connor Stacey through the air from 23 yards out for another score with 11:15 left in the game. Columbiana would take a 56-52 lead.
On the Clippers’ next possession, Tanner Pearl’s 77 yard jaunt with 6:44 left in the game gave Columbiana their largest lead of the game, 63-52. The Clippers would hold that lead.
First they would force the Blue Devils to turn the ball over on downs with 6:59 remaining in the contest, then they would intercept a Larimer fourth down pass at their own 15-yard line with 3:52 left.
“We got one key stop,” Clippers coach Bob Spaite said. “Coach Wolfe said ‘I promise you I will stop them one time’. And that’s what we did, we stopped them one time. That’s what it was. It literally came down to who was going to get one stop.”
“Second half we kind of made adjustments and our defense held up in the those last two drives. That’s how we pulled through,” Davidson said.
Read more: Columbiana/Western Reserve game preview
Columbiana will travel to Crestview in week two. Western Reserve will visit South Range.
Last Five Meetings
August 27, 2015 – Columbiana, 44-37
August 28, 2014 – Western Reserve, 47-12
October 26, 2012 – Western Reserve, 15-0
September 7, 2007 – Columbiana, 56-27
September 8, 2006 – Columbiana, 28-6