Two teams entered. One team left with a share of the league championship.
A packed house at Harmon Field in Wauseon, Friday, Nov. 1, came to see two Fulton County rivals do battle with a share of the Northwest Ohio Athletic League title on the line.
Both were 9-1, 5-1 in the NWOAL, along with Liberty Center.
A closely-contested matchup was anything but, as Archbold dominated every facet of the game in a 38-0 shutout to retain the Lions Club trophy for the third straight year.
Archbold and Liberty Center (9-1, 6-1 NWOAL) share the NWOAL title after the Tigers defeated Evergreen 49-21 on Friday night.
It is Archbold’s 10th solo or shared league title in school history.
“It’s Wauseon Week, so you don’t need any extra motivation,” said David Dominique, AHS head coach. “If you’re from Archbold, this is a huge rivalry.
“Our guys came well-prepared, but most importantly, they executed. Our physicality was top-notch.”
“It means a lot (to win the league). I’m so proud for these kids and all the hard work they’ve put in.”
Owning The Second Quarter
Archbold took the opening kickoff and moved the ball deep into Wauseon territory, but a DJ Newman pass was intercepted by Kolton DeGroff to end the scoring threat.
After Wauseon went three-and-out, the Streaks moved the ball to the Indians 14 before settling for a 31-yard Devin Witte field goal for a 3-0 lead.
The Indians moved the ball to the Archbold 17-yard line, but came up empty when they were unsuccessful on a fourth down play.
The second quarter sealed Wauseon’s fate as the Streaks scored 28 unanswered points.
A 10-play drive ended with a Caleb Hogrefe 1-yard touchdown plunge for a 10-0 lead.
Wauseon gave the ball away on its next two possessions on interceptions by Elijah Zimmerman and Noah Gomez.
Archbold turned both turnovers into points with a 74-yard Gomez run and a 29-yard Newman-to-Antonio Cruz pass to go up 24-0.
The Indians again moved the ball deep into Archbold territory, but stalled at the Blue Streak 16 with 2:02 left in the half.
Archbold took over and moved to the Wauseon 46 in six plays.
Newman looked down the left sideline and found Brandon Taylor for a 46-yard touchdown and a 31-0 lead with 20 seconds left in the half.
Running Clock… Again
For the fourth straight week, an AHS lead of over 30 points meant a mercy rule running clock.
The clock stopped only a few times in the second half for change of possession or penalties, although it did stop once for another Archbold score.
With 1:28 left in the third quarter, Gomez took a handoff on the first play from scrimmage and raced 62 yards for his second touchdown of the night and a 38-0 lead.
The Indians didn’t threaten until the final seconds of the game when they moved to the Archbold 14, but the AHS defense once again kept the shutout intact as time ran out.
The Lions Club and NWOAL trophies were lifted high by the Blue Streaks as fireworks lit up the night sky after the dominating 38- 0 win.
“I just loved the way we played… it’s fun to see all the hard work pay off,” said Dominique. “You can tell we were focused and locked in and ready to go.”
Archbold rolled up 444 yards of total offense while allowing Wauseon only 222.
Gomez ran for 197 yards on 21 carries with a pair of touchdowns.
Newman was 11-14 passing for 174 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception.
Taylor and Cruz led AHS in pass receptions, with 67 and 58 yards respectively, and one touchdown each.
For the Indians, Cody Figy was 15-36 for 138 yards and three interceptions.
Isaac Wilson rushed for 57 yards on nine carries to lead the WHS ground game. Connar Penrod had five receptions for 63 yards.
AHS-Witte 31-yard field goal
AHS-Hogrefe 1-yard run (Witte
AHS-Gomez 74-yard run (Witte
AHS-Cruz 29-yard pass from
Newman (Witte kick)
AHS-Taylor 46-yard pass from
Newman (Witte kick)
AHS-Gomez 62-yard run (Witte