Fighting Tigers power past Belfry, 33-21

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 28, 2005

BELFRY, Ky. - It was power vs. power.

As for the Ironton Fighting Tigers, more power to ya.

Two traditionally strong running teams met at Belfry's new stadium Friday night and it was the Ironton power game that proved the stronger of the two with a 33-21 win over the Pirates.

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Ironton (8-1) ran 46 times for 249 yards while Belfry rushed 33 times for 184 yards.

&#8220There's no secret to what we do and the same thing goes for Belfry. We both just line up and run the ball,” Ironton coach Bob Lutz said. &#8220One thing about our games, they're over in a hurry.”

The game lasted only two hours, but it was enough time for senior halfback Darius Lewis to rush 20 times for 145 yards and two touchdowns. Eric Layne added 58 yards on eight tries and scored one touchdown.

&#8220(Lewis) is the best back we've seen,” Belfry coach Phillip Haywood said.

The game was scoreless until late in the first quarter. On the first play following an Ironton punt, Matt Maynard ran 52 yards for a touchdown to put Belfry up 7-0.

&#8220We shut them down the entire first half with the exception of one play. We just made a mistake in an assignment,” Lutz said.

The Fighting Tigers responded with a 63-yard, eight-play drive capped by quarterback Chad Miller's 7-yard run on a keeper. Lewis had a 21-yard run to key the drive.

Craig Stamper kicked the extra point to tie the game.

Belfry went 3-and-out and Ironton then went 59 yards in seven plays with Lewis covering the final 23 yards for the touchdown. The conversion failed and it was 13-7.

Lewis came up with a big defensive play on the first play of the second half. Quarterback Jordan Phillips went back to pass, but Lewis stripped the ball free and Lewis fell on the football at the 29.

Four plays later, Lewis ran 6 yards for the touchdown and it was 19-13 with 9:41 on the clock.

Later in the quarter, Belfry got the ball at the Ironton 41 and quickly ran four plays to score. Corey Chapman had a 32-yard run to the 16 and Chapman got the touchdown on the next play. Earnest's conversion cut the deficit to 19-14.

A time-consuming 50-yard, 11-play drive followed and Jared Murphy scored on a 5-yard run as the lead grew to 26-14.

Layne recovered a Pirate fumbled three plays later at the Belfry 34 to set up another touchdown.

Miller ran an option and was wrapped up, but he turned and pitched to Layne at the last moment and Layne ran 34 yards for the touchdown. Stamper's kick upped the lead to 33-14.

Belfry got its final touchdown when Ironton's second team fumbled and Maynard scooped up the ball and returned it 44 yards for the scored. Earnest's kick completed the scoring.

The win enabled Ironton to clinch a home game for the first round of the Division IV playoffs.

Belfry, now 7-2, saw its 7-game winning streak snapped.



First Quarter

Bel – Matt Maynard 52 run (Glen Earnest kick) 0:34

Second Quarter

Irn – Chad Miller 7 run (Craig Stamper kick) 8:32

Irn – Darius Lewis 23 run (kick failed) 2:43

Third Quarter

Irn – Darius Lewis 6 run (run failed) 9:41

Bel – Matt Maynard 16 run (Glen Earnest kick) 3:02

Fourth Quarter

Irn – Jared Murphy 5 run (Craig Stamper kick) 9:58

Irn – Eric Layne 34 run (Craig Stamper kick) 8:28

Bel – Matt Maynard 44 fumble recovery (Glen Earnest kick) 2:55



First downs139


Passing yards74

Total yards256188






Individual Leaders

RUSHING – Ironton: Darius Lewis 20-145, Jared Murphy 9-26, Eric Layne 8-58, Chad Miller 5-9, Dominic Murphy 3-16, Drew Kuehne 1-minus 5; Belfry: Dustin May 16-52, Matt Maynard 8-90, Corey Chapman 5-55, Jordan Phillips 4-minus 13.

PASSING – Ironton: Chad Miller 1-2-0 7, Drew Kuehne 0-2-0; Belfry: Jordan Phillips 1-1-0 4.

RECEIVING – Ironton: Darius Lewis 1-7; Belfry: Matt Maynard 1-4.


Records: Ironton 8-1, Belfry 7-2.