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Written by: David Burnworth on Sunday, September 19th, 2021
Last night I drove to Millersport, Ohio to watch the football game between the home team Millersport Lakers and the visiting Miller Falcons. The Lakers ended their football program back in 2017 because of little interest in the sport (Low numbers). I spoke with the Lakers athletic director in the press box before the game and he said that they were only able to dress 14 players for the game. There are 21 players listed on the roster. Three were missing because of covid issues. The others were out for various reasons including injuries. Miller has 22 on the rosters and I counted 18 dressed. The Lakers lost one player in the game due to an injury, Mason Reynolds. He would not return and he from what I was told was the heartbeat of the team.
Midway through the opening quarter Connor Kaido was stopped on fourth and two as the Lakers defense swarmed to him keeping him well short of the first down marker. Reynolds would throw a halfback pass to Cody Blosser for a 35-yard gain with 6:05 left in the quarter. A bad snap, the first of many would cause Laker quarterback Trey Johnston to lose seven yards when Quin McCabe was credited with the sack. The drive ended with a punt that McCabe blocked then scooped it up and after getting control of the ball he took it to the house giving the Falcons a 6-0 lead. Tre McCoy was stopped on the two-point conversion try leaving this a 6-0 game, with 2.59 left in the quarter.
The Lakers would lock this one up at six when Blosser hauled in a 64-yard touchdown pass. Another bad snap ended any hopes of a two-point conversion leaving this one locked up. The Lakers went eighty yards, in just four plays. The rest of the half though the Lakers offense would only net an unofficial twenty-six yards the rest of the half.
Just sixteen seconds into the 2nd quarter Troy Smith would sack Falcons quarterback Tre McCoy for a loss of nine yards. Early on everyone could see that the Lakers were full of energy and eager to show that they could keep pace with the young Falcons, who have only five seniors on their roster.
When the Lakers got the ball back Johnston seemed to pull out a little early causing a fumble that Aiden Hinkle, the Falcons 6-0, 250-pound lineman came up with. on the ensuing drive Blosser would sack McCoy setting the tone for the rest of the drive, which ended a short time later.
With 1:14 left in the half, the Lakers dropped back in punt formation where a bad snap allowed Cole Barnhart to easily tackle the punter who was forced to run. Twenty-three seconds later McCoy found McCabe all alone for a 45-yard score. McCoy would lower his shoulder and bully his way in for a two-point conversion making this a 14-6 game.
The 2nd half kickoff went to Tony Smith of the Lakers and he made a move, raced downfield being tackled on the Falcons six-yard line. The drive would lose four yards taking away any hopes of the Lakers tying things up.
The Falcons used a 58-yard run from McCoy to set up the first score of the 2nd half with McCabe picking up a fumble on a backward pass and racing to the end zone untouched from 32-yards out. Connor Kaido
made this a 22-6 game with a two-point conversion run.
McCabe continued to be a thorn in the side of the Lakers when he got to Johnston for a loss of one, then he sacked him for a loss of six. After the Lakers put the ball on the grass the Falcons came out of the pile with the ball. McCabe would run for 25-yards to keep the spotlight on himself. McCoy ran the ball to the Lakers ten-yard line. Kaido would close the drive with a touchdown run making this a 28-6 game, with 1:22 left in the half.
The Lakers would respond with a kickoff return for the score from Blosser and a two-point conversion run from Smith making this a 28-14 game with sixty seconds left in the quarter. The Lakers ended the quarter when Andrew Kronenbitter took McCabe down for a loss of two.
Just forty-nine seconds into the final frame Kaido scored on a forty-yard run. The Lakers would block the first of three point-after attempts by Sunny Mauller to keep this a 34-14 game. The Miller defense would make one more big play in this one and that came on a nice play from Kaido, who got to Smith for a loss of four.
The Lakers down to 13 players never ever quit in this one but effort would not be enough to stop McCabe from going up the gut of the defense untouched for a 54-yard touchdown run to make this a 40-14 game. Levi Mankin would go on a forty-two-yard run taking the ball to the Lakers two. He would also go the final two-yard for the Falcons last score to make this a 46-14 game.
The Lakers would get a Johnston to Tony Smith 28-yard pass completion to set up the final score of the contest with that coming on a 29-yard run by Smith to give us our final score 46-20.
PASSING 3-6 1 TD
PASSING 4-11 1 TD
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