XENIA —The players honored on Senior Night were the ones to set the tone for Xenia as it closed out its regular season schedule at home and continued to pave its way into the record books every week.
The Buccaneers scored on all seven of its first half possessions and cruised to a 64-20 win against West Carrollton on Thursday at Doug Adams Stadium.
Xenia with the win is 9-0 overall and ties the 1921 team for what is believed to be the best start in school history.
“This group is special,” head coach Maurice Harden said. “We got some really dynamic football players, and also got some really good leaders in that crew too. I’m happy that we got a bunch of guys that are working together to work on one goal.”
Seniors were celebrated in front of the capacity crowd prior to the game, and made plays all over the field for the Buccaneers once it got started.
Zach Salyers got everything going with a sack on the first play of the game. He added another before the first quarter ended.
“It meant a lot to me,” Salyers said. “I’ve been playing for 12 years with all my seniors and it felt huge to get out there and make a play with all of them to start the game.”
Tremell Wright added to his season record of touchdown catches to open the scoring for the Bucs and had three total in the first half as part of his six catches and 95 yards receiving in the game.
Trei’Shaun Sanders tied the school record for rushing touchdowns in a season to make the score 20-0 less than nine minutes into the game. He later broke it with his 21st of the season on a 41-yard run with 8:27 remaining until halftime, running for 81 yards total on eight carries.
Jamell Smith helped force a safety on a sack in the second quarter. He later pinned West Carrollton at its own one on a 57-yard punt.
The Xenia defense came out charging as well and pushed West Carrollton backward in the first quarter with -14 yards of offense on four possessions.
The records continued to fall for Xenia as its 50th point of the first half broke the school record for points in a season. An extra point by Mason Rubio following Elijah Johnson’s third touchdown run of the game to open the fourth quarter set the new mark for most points in a game and close the scoring.
The combination of individual and team records Xenia is only bringing the Buccaneers closer together, according to Harden.
“You love to see the team atmosphere that we’re building,” Harden said. “We’ve got to look at ourselves and what we do as a team and how that affects everything else.”
Xenia now gets a chance in its regular season finale at Sidney next Friday to achieve what may be the first 10-win season in school history.
“It means a lot, it’s been like 100 years since we were last at this mark,” Salyers said. “Even when we were freshman, we had great athletes and didn’t hit 9-0. This feels good.”
“We’re proud of what we’ve done, but we also know the job’s not done,” Harden said. “We have to go play a very good Sidney team which beat us last year and stuck a flag in our logo. We still got some work to do.”