Photos by Melissa Adams
Information by Roger Jester
Would you like fries with that?
The Lucasville Valley High School football team would likely decline.
Trying to make a comeback in a ballgame, you need everything can go your way. Sometimes it just takes one player to thwart that effort.
Visiting Valley was in the midst of making up ground on West Jefferson in the third quarter of Saturday’s first round playoff contest, pulling within 24-14 and with momentum on their side.
Enter Roughrider Adam Fry.
First, Fry had a long kickoff return (which teammate Ethan Hostetler turned into a 13 yard touchdown one play later), and then Fry would be on the receiving end of a 70 yard TD pass from West Jeff QB Tyler Buescher to widen the lead to 23 on the way to a 43-14 victory.
The game started great for the Roughriders as they capitalized on a pair of early Indian turnovers.
First, MJ Book scooped up a bouncing Valley fumble and returned it 34 yards for a touchdown. On Valley’s next possession, they gave it away again as West Jeff’s Ethan Miller smothered yet another Indian fumble.
Left with a short field, the Roughriders started with a Buescher to Hostetler pass, but then took to the ground – and four plays later, WJ’s Weston Kimley took it in from a yard out.
Valley was set on trying a comeback attempt. They put together an impressive 15-play drive, but their dreams were dashed as Roughrider Canyon Schneider sacked Indian QB George Arnett on a fourth down play.
West Jeff took over and showed Valley how it was done. It started with a Buescher to Fry 17 yard pass, went to a pair of Hayden Salyer double digit run, and concluded with a 16 yard TD catch by Book.
Solid defense helped the Roughriders hold back the Indians, and nurse their 21-0 lead going in to the half. Solid plays were turned in by Jonathan Rickenbacker and Hostetler (who tied for team lead in tackles), as well as Asher Wilson, Jake Fitzpatrick, and Schneider.
In the second half, Valley came out fired up, causing a West Jeff fumble on the opening kickoff. One play later, Indian QB Arnett connected with Carter Nickel for a 30 yard touchdown.
West Jeff was able to respond with three points as Mason Cordetti converted a 33 yard field goal.
Valley was committed to their comeback attempt as they struck again quickly with a 55 yard Chase Morrow TD scamper.
That set up the Fry long kickoff return, Hostetler TD, and then Fry’s long touchdown catch.
West Jeff concluded the scoring for the night as Buescher threw his fourth TD pass, this one to Book from 11 yards out.
Next Saturday, the Roughriders will welcome in Northmor, who defeated Fredericktown.