Article: Western Reserve Wins Nail Biter
Shadyside - The Western Reserve Blue Devils scored early, and then held on late to preserve a 19-18 Region 21 playoff win over Shadyside Friday night. Those scores, and the defense was led in large part by senior multi-purpose player Tim Cooper.
Cooper would take the game's opening kickoff and race down the right sideline for a 95-yard kickoff return. A Parker Clegg extra-point gave the Devils a 7-0 lead only 15-seconds into the contest.
Two possessions later Clegg would come up with a specatcular play of his own when he stepped in front of a pass from Tigers quarterback Chase Kinemond. The interception set the Devils up at the Shadyside 32-yard line at the 6:06 mark of the first quarter.
The Devils would keep the Tigers on their heels as they drove the final 32-yards on 8-plays, with fullback Dan Zilke pounding the ball in from 1-yard out. The touchdown with 3:08 of the opening quarter gave the Devils a 13-0 lead as the point after was no good.
But Shadyside had a big weapon in receiver Austin Dorris, who would catch 3 balls on the night for 96 yards and a touchdown. Following a 41-yard pass from Kinemond to Dorris, the Tigers converted a 22-yard field goal attempt at the 18-second mark of the first quarter. The field goal cut the Devils lead to 13-3.
But the Devils would answer right back as quarterback Nick Allison would scamper into the end zone 2-yards out with 10:41 remaining in the second quarter. The scoring strike was set up by an unbelievable diving catch by Cooper at the Tigers 2-yard line. The pass covered 38-yards.
Shadyside would threaten once again on their next possession as they drove to the Devils 6-yard line. But the Devils defense came up with a tremendous effort and turned the Tigers away on a fourth and six attempt with 7:47 remaining in the half.
The third quarter saw both teams drive the ball into enemy territory, but neither could capitalze once they cross the mid-field stripe.
But with the start of the fourth quarter, the Tigers got their claws back. With 11:19 remaining, Kinemond would hit senior receiver Ian Baker over the middle of the field for a 55-yard catch and run for a touchdown. The two-point attempt failed, but the Tigers had cut the Devils advantage down to 19-9.
Then on the Tigers next possession, Kinemond would hit Dorris for a 46-yard scoring strike with 6:08 remaining. This time the PAT was good, and the Tigers trailed by ony a 19-16 margin.
On the Devils next possession it looked like the Devils had put the game in the bag after Cooper broke loose for a 58-yard run down to the Tigers 1-yard line. However, after quarterback Allison plowed into the end zone, the Devils were penatalized for aiding the running, and set back to the 5-yard line. On the next play Cooper git the handoff, but he had the ball pop out of his arms and into the Tigers Christopher Littel with 4:16 remaining.
The Tigers would slowly move down the field, converting two third and long, and one fourth and long situation to set up a first and ten at the Devils 19-yard line. But once again the Devils defense stepped up as the pass sailed over Dorris' head on a fourth down attempt with 24-seconds remaining.
The Devils would take a safety with 5-seconds remaining, and then Cooper would intercept a Kinemond hail mary pass as time expired to set the Devils single-season and career marks for interceptions.
Article Courtesy of: ITCLFootball.net