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Second half defense sparks Vikings’ win

Jim Walker

jim.walker@irontontribune.com

 

WILLOW WOOD — The second half gave the Symmes Valley Vikings their second wind.

Tied at the half, the Vikings controlled the game in the second half and beat the Portsmouth Notre Dame Titans 35-17 Friday in a Southern Ohio Conference game.

The Vikings (4-3, 3-1) jumped in front 14-0 before the Titans rallied to even the score at the half. Coach Rusty Webb praised his players for their second half performance.

“Early in the game we had some defensive breakdowns. In the second quarter we lost our energy and Notre Dame played well,” said Webb.

“The kids held their focus and made the adjustments. I can’t say enough about them in the second half.”

The Viking racked up 392 yards rushing led by Cameron Meadows with 126 yards on 10 carries and two touchdowns.

Collin Webb ran 14 times for 84 yards, Brandon Craft had 75 yards on 11 tries with two scores and Derrek Smith ran 11 times for 57 yards.

“Notre Dame was taking away our outside so Cameron Meadows gashed them in the middle,” said Webb. “The backs did an excellent job blocking for each other, but when you run for 392 yards, you’re getting it done up front, too.”

The Titans had 195 yards on the ground with Sam Kayser running 15 times for 142 yards and two touchdowns.

Symmes Valley went 69 yards in 13 plays capped by Payton Hayes’ 12-yard scoring run with 5:48 left in the first quarter. Blake Bowen kicked the first of five conversions and it was 7-0.

Austin Waugh recover a fumble and the Vikings went on a 59-yard, 13-play drive that end on a 1-yard run by Meadows and it was 14-0 with 9:20 left in the half.

The Titans answered with a 66-yard jaunt by Kayser and it was 14-7.

Late in the half, the Titans went 58 yards in five plays with Kayser going 18 yards with 31 seconds on the clock to tie the game.

Notre Dame put together a drive in the third quarter that stalled and Drew Cassidy kicked a 32-yard field goal and the Titans led 17-14 at the 3:28 mark.

But the Vikings took over from that point of the game.

The Vikings went 53 yards in six plays with Tyler Dement running 12 yards after picking up a fumble for a first down.

The play set up a 60-yard run by Meadows for a touchdown and the Vikings led 21-17 at the 3:11 mark.

After forcing a punt, the Vikings went 75 yards in 11 plays with Craft going the final 5 yards with 8:01 to play.

Symmes Valley then drove 66 yards in seven plays as Craft bolted 30 yards for his second touchdown of the night and it was 25-17 with 2:44 left.

Craft then intercepted a pass on the Titans’ next series and the Vikings ran out the clock.

“The defense stepped it up in the second half because Notre Dame has a good offense,” said coach Webb.

Symmes Valley visits South Point next Friday.

Notre Dame 0 14 3 0 = 17

Symmes Valley 7 7 7 14 = 35

First Quarter

SV — 13-69 Payton Hayes 12 run (Blake Bowen kick) 5:48

Second Quarter

SV — Cameron Meadows 1 run (Blake Bowen kick) 9:20

ND — Sam Kayser 66 run (D. Cassidy kick) 4:21 1-66

ND —Sam Kayser 18 run (D Cassidy kick) 0:31

Third Quarter

ND —Drew Cassidy 32 field goal 3:28 defense held

SV — Cameron Meadows 60 run (Blake Bowen kick) 3:11

Fourth Quarter

SV —Brandon Craft 5 run (Blake Bowen kick) 8:01

SV — Brandon Craft 30 run (Blake Bowen kick) 2:44

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PND SV

First downs 11 21

Rushes-yards 27-195 57-392

Passing yards 21 12

Total yards 216 404

Cmp-Att-Int 4-8-1 1-2-0

Fumbles-lost 1-1 1-0

Penalties-yards 2-7 6-57

Punts-average 3-38.7 3-29.7

——

Individual Leaders

RUSHING —Notre Dame: Sam Kayser 15-142; Symmes Valley: Cameron Meadows 10-126 2-TDs, Collin Webb 14-84, Austin Waugh 5-15, Brandon Craft 11-75 2-TDs, Derrek Smith 11-57, Levi Cade 2-4, Payton Hayes 3-19 TD, Tyler Dement 1-12.

PASSING — Notre Dame: Drew Cassidy 4-7-0 21, Isaiah Johnson 0-1-1; Symmes Valley: Derrek Smith 1-2-0 12.

RECEIVING — Notre Dame: Grant Sparks 2-19, Isaiah Johnson 1-1, Michael Collins 1-1; Symmes Valley: Collin Webb 1-12.