Blue Aces trump Redskins
Saturday, September 28th
Utica’s Zack Edmister (24) carries the ball while teammate Travis Baldwin (27) blocks in the second half of Friday’s game against Granville. The Blue Aces won, 56-16.
UTICA — Granville’s high-flying passing game certainly did its job on Friday night at Utica, but the Blue Aces showed other aspects of its offense and special teams in its 56-16 victory.
Granville (4-1) certainly passed well, 27-of-35 for 281 yards and three TDs, but it also got 100 yards and three touchdowns from its rushers. The Blue Aces might have done even better if not for three lost fumbles. The Redskins (1-4) finished with 214 total yards, with 204 yards coming in 63 carries. Both teams were heavily penalized, Granville 10 for 105 yards and Utica nine for 72.
Not to be left out of the Blue Aces scoring success was its return teams, led by Blake Compton. He took the opening kickoff 85 yards to score at the 11:48 mark of the first quarter for a 7-0 lead. The Redskins mounted a scoring drive later in the period, which produced Travis Baldwin’s 1-yard TD run with 3:37 to play. Zach Edmister’s conversion run gave Utica the lead, 8-7.
Granville was not down long, as Compton took the ensuing kickoff back as well, 75 yards this time, and lifted the Blue Aces to a 14-8 lead.
That play punctured Utica’s tire, and Granville QB Isaac Maurer did not provide a spare. He threw for three TDs in the second quarter alone, a 1-yarder to Brock Hill and for 29 and 14 yards to Ajay Alderman, and the Blue Aces led at halftime, 35-8.
Granville still used its passing game to gain first downs in the third and fourth quarters, but got the running backs more carries. Conner Koester ran in from 5 yards out with 3:48 to play in the third quarter to increase the lead to 42-8. Patrick Oehlman scored on a 2-yard run with 8:52 left in the game for a 48-8 advantage.
Pierce Piazza broke the scoring drought for the Redskins with a 5-yard run with 4:25 to play, and Baldwin’s conversion catch left Utica down, 48-16. Trevor Steyn, however, scored on the first play of the Blue Aces next drive on a 53-yard run to add punctuation to the win.
Baldwin led the Redskins with 21 carries for 94 yards, and Piazza gained 62 yards on 18 carries. Mitchell Marston completed 1-of-6 passes, to Jacob McKee for 10 yards.
Maurer went for 24-of-31 for 227 yards and three TDs for Granville, and Alderman caught nine of those passes for 122 yards.
Utica will try to regroup next Friday with a 7 p.m. game at Licking Valley.
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