XENIA — The Xenia Buccaneers appeared dominant in the first half of their game versus the Stebbins Indians on Friday. With two touchdowns and a safety in the bag by halftime, the Buccaneers looked like they might win the whole thing. However, the Indians hit their stride in the second half of the evening, pulling out a passing game that outmaneuvered the Buccaneers.
Xenia led with a touchdown early in the game. With 43 seconds remaining in the first half, Ramon Browder scored a running touchdown that set the Buccaneers ahead. Utilizing Xenia’s reliable running game, the Buccaneers led Stebbins 14-3 at the end of the first quarter.
Three minutes into the second quarter, Buccaneer Jamal Smith took down the Stebbins ball carrier for a safety. The two teams traded punts, fighting back and forth over the middle of the field for most of the remaining half. With one minute left, Stebbins were 4th down and 4. Though the run came up short, a Xenia facemask foul pushed Stebbins up to the Xenia 18 yard line. Stebbins’ Dalton King scored a touchdown with 45 seconds remaining. Score at the half: Xenia 16, Stebbins 10.
At the top of the third quarter, a 25 yard pass put Stebbins in range for a touchdown. With nine minutes remaining, Stebbins quarterback Nate Keller completed a touchdown pass to Aiden Jones, putting the Indians in the lead 17-16.
At the five minute mark, Xenia’s Tawfiq Jabbar picked off a 40 yard pass right at the Xenia goal line. However, the drive proved unfruitful. With a little less than three minutes left, Stebbins blocked a punt for an Indians safety.
Xenia made a second interception at the 1:35 mark. The pass was picked off by Wright, but once again resulted in no score. With one period left in the game, Stebbins led the match 19-16.
In the fourth quarter, a Stebbins touchdown by Marvelous Rutledge extended the Indians lead.
Not to be outdone, the Buccaneers gave the ball to Tremell Wright, who smashed through the Indians defense for a 60 yard drive. Wright pushed right and up center field for the Buccaneers’ third touchdown of the game.
However, the Buccaneers were unable to score again by the end of the night, giving Stebbins the victory 26-23.
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