Article: Western Reserve Takes ITCL Lead
Berlin Center - The Western Reserve Blue Devils (6-2, 5-0) used the talents of their stand-out tailback Tim Cooper to beat the Southern Indians 28-6 Friday night. The win, along with a loss by the Columbiana Clippers now gives the Devils sole possession of the league.
Cooper, a senior, celebrated senior night with a four touchdown performance. He rushed for 148 yards on the night, including three touchdown runs, and also added six receptions for 113 yards and a touchdown.
"I can't do it without the line," Cooper said. "The line just opened up these huge holes. Dan Zilke was a fullback sometimes, and center Micah Marra just lead the way. We've got a bunch of great players on this team, it's not just me."
Cooper scored his first touchdown of the night on the Devils very first possession. At the conclussion of a 62-yard drive, Cooper ran in from 15-yards out to give the Devils a 7-0 lead with 6:10 left in the first quarter.
Southern answered right back with a quick score. Tailback Mike McKenzie raced around end 45-yards for a score at the 4:57 mark to cut the Devils lead to 7-6 as the point after attempt was blocked.
Cooper would score again two possessions later. This time it was on a 7-yard run, and put the Devils up 14-6 with 9:07 remaining in the second quarter.
But the Devils were not done there, as they would add one more score before intermission. And of course it was Cooper again providing the score. With just 1:27 before halftime, he would race in from 6-yards to push the Devils advantage to 21-6.
"Cooper had a heck of a game," Blue Devils Head Coach Andy Hake remarked.
The second half saw a steady dose of power I rushing attack as the Devils wore down the Indians and shortened the game. They would go on a 10-play, 80-yard drive to start the second half, with quarterback Nick Allison hitting Cooper on a 34-yard touchdown pass to finish the drive. The touchdown at the 5:39 mark of the stanza put the Devils up by the final 28-6margin.
They would close the game with an impressive 14-play, 85-yard drive to wipe out the final 8:55 of the fourth quarter. Allison would take a knee with 30 second left at the Indians 5-yard line to end the contest.
"They have a heck of a team (Southern)," Hake said. "Their big, their physical, I just think our guys were up (for the challenge)."
Next week the Devils travel to Wellsville, while Southern will travel to Leetonia.