|Rockets shoot past archrival Bulldogs|
|Saturday, August 31, 2013 12:20 AM|
By DAVE BONINSEGNA
PANDORA — The start of the 2013 football season finally game to fruition on Friday night with the first annual Zsportslive.com Bowl with the Columbus Grove Bulldogs and the Pandora-Gilboa Rockets battling it our under the newly-sponsored archrivalry contest.
The Bulldogs have owned the contest of late, winning seven of the last 10 and the past three in a row. However, the streak came to an end at the banks of the Riley as the Rockets hoisted the trophy with a 26-12 victory.
Jacob Basinger ran the ball 16 times for 127 yards and picked off a pass. Rocket quarterback Seth Schmenk was 13-of-20 for 142 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Reed Hovest and Alex Osborn caught a scoring pass each in the win.
Alec Gladwell ran the ball in for two yards out for a Bulldog score, while quarterback Riley Brubaker toted the ball 16 times, including a 7-yard jaunt into the end zone in the Columbus Grove effort.
"It was not a pretty win but it was a win and that is all that matters. We shot ourselves in the foot with mistakes that we shouldn't have made and missed out on opportunities," Rockets coach Carey Arthur remarked.
The Rockets set the tone early as Basinger nearly picked off the first pass on the first play of the game but couldn't quite pull the ball in. The guests would go out on a punt three plays later.
The teams traded 3-and-outs before Pandora-Gilboa struck first; starting their drive on the Bulldog 44, Schmenk ran for 15 yards before hitting Hovest three consecutive times, the last ending in the end zone to give the Rockets a 7-0 lead with 4:53 to go in the first quarter.
The hosts struck again on their first possession of the second frame, going 63 yards on seven plays with Osborn the recipient of a 31-yard pass completion. After the extra point, the Rockets were up 14-0.
However, the Bulldogs replied back. Despite giving up an interception to their hosts deep in their own territory, the defense held and the offense rewarded. With 1:41 to go in the half, Columbus Grove got on the board on a Brubaker 7-yard run; although the extra point was no good, the 'Dogs were in the game and trailed just 14-6 at the break.
The guests took charge in the third canto, causing a fumble on the Rockets' first drive and coming up with the recovery. Brubaker took advantage. Getting the ball on the P-G 24, he took his team the distance; handing the ball to Gladwell for a 2-yard run into the end zone. The extra point again was no good and the Bulldogs trailed 14-12.
The Rockets did as their opponent and struck on their first drive of the quarter. The Rockets used 10 plays to go 48 yards before Schmenk took the ball in from 2 yards out to extend the Rocket lead to 20-12.
Columbus Grove didn't commit its first penalty until the fourth quarter but they came back-to-back and put them in a deep hole.
The teams traded punts late in the third but the Rockets tacked on one more score with 2:27 left. Schmenk drove the ball in from 5 yards out to finish off the scoring.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Columbus Grove 0 6 6 0 12
Pandora-Gilboa 7 7 6 6 26
PG- Schmenk 15 pass to Hovest (kick good)
PG- Schmenk 31 pass to Osborn (kick good)
CG- Gladwell 2 run (run failed)
CG- Brubaker 7 run (kick failed)
PG- Schmenk 2 run (kick failed)
PG- Schmenk 5 yd run (kick failed)