May 5, 2016


H.S. Football: Elyria recovers to take 14-6 lead over Valley Forge

ELYRIA — Kevin Fell was breathing a sigh of relief when Elyria’s game versus Valley Forge was postponed Friday night.
The game was scheduled to resume today at 3 p.m. at Ely Stadium with the Pioneers on top 14-6 with 7:49 to go in the first half. Lightning first caused a delay at 7:36 p.m. and the game was officially postponed around 9:30 after lightning was continually spotted in the sky.
“I don’t know if we were flat or they were just pretty sharp,” Fell said of the Patriots’ start that had the Pioneers on their heels. “They made plays all the way down the field on us twice and score. I’ll tell you what, I would not have been real comfortable coming in here down 6-0.
“They had a big back and a big back gives us trouble. They made plays for two series in a row.”
Valley Forge took the opening kick and held the ball for
17 plays, 65 yards and all but 3:47 of the first quarter in an impressive drive that didn’t stall until Connor Kamczyc, Trayvon Cummings and Mike Smosy stood up 6-foot, 245-pound fullback Richard Worship on a fourth down at the 2-yard line.
Elyria was three-and-out on its possession and punted. This time Forge put together an impressive eight-play, 35-yard drive capped by quarterback Brian Berry’s 1-yard sneak. It was 6-0 after the failed extra-point kick.
“I’ve been in enough of these (delays) where I’m frankly relieved,” Fell said. “I did not want to go back out there in the mud in a 14-6 game for 2½ quarters considering the attitude we had on the field. I think that game could have gone either way.”
After Valley Forge played keep-away from the potentially dangerous Elyria offense, the Pioneers did take control before the delay. Elyria had the ball for only 49 seconds during the first quarter.
The offense finally put together a sustained drive thanks to Jumarr Lewis and Jordan Connell. They combined for 58 yards, with Connell breaking loose for a 21-yard touchdown run with 8:40 left in the half. Cummings then intercepted Berry’s pass on a second-down play and returned it 35 yards to give Elyria the lead.
“Trayvon saved our butts,” Fell said. “I thought Jordan made a nice run, but then we missed the kick. We didn’t have a kicker. (Scott Peggs) is out with a concussion, but we tried to kick the first one.”
It missed, but quarterback Hunter Parsh hooked up with Lewis for the 2-point conversion to put Elyria in front 14-6. Before the Pioneers could kick off, the first lightning was sighted. Although there was no rain at first, it poured at times, soaking the turf.
“They’ve got all the disadvantage,” Fell said. “They’re the ones who have to travel. I had nothing to do with the decision. I told them we’ve got you at such a disadvantage the way it is right now. They’ve got a Thursday night game coming up next week.”
Because the lightning never quit, the game was postponed.
“We’re in a lot better shape than we could have been,” Fell said. “Thank goodness.”
WELCOME BACK: There will be no gate today. Anyone is welcome to come back and watch the conclusion.
Contact Tim Gehbardt at 329-7135 or