The FOX19 Friday Prep Rally tour crossed over the river this week for the beginning of high school football in Ohio. The Sycamore Aviators hosted the Withrow Tigers at Bud Acus Alumni Field on Friday night and earned a victory defeating the Tigers by a final score of 38-24. It was Sycamore's sixth opening-season victory in as many years.
The game remained scoreless for a majority of the first quarter until senior quarterback Kyle Sess ran six yards for a touchdown for the Aviators with just over four minutes left. Following a successful extra point by Aviator kicker Sam Cogan, Sycamore remained on top 7-0 at the conclusion of the first quarter.
After a scoreless first quarter, new head coach Jim Place's Tigers switched sides and promptly answered with a 1-yard touchdown run from junior quarterback Sam E. Williams, but missed their chance at an extra point.
With just over seven minutes remaining in the first half of play, Withrow continued to launch their comeback. Senior wide receiver Dionte Riley reached the end zone, as he hooked up with quarterback Denzel Pool, prompting a rewarding two-point conversion placing the Tigers a full score ahead of the Aviators 14-7.
The Tigers struck once again with just over four minutes left to play in the half as Williams connected with junior wide receiver Marquez Whitfield for an 85-yard touchdown play.
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Leading the Aviators 21-7, Withrow allowed Sess to rush nine yards into the end zone with just seconds left before the half. A successful kick placed the Aviators back within reach going into the locker room trailing 21-14 at the game's half.
The Tigers received the football to begin the third quarter and completed a drive that resulted in a 23-yard field goal, establishing themselves ahead of the Aviators, 24-14.
After an Aviator safety placed Sycamore just eight points behind the Tigers at 24-16, Sess found the end zone again, rushing nine yards for his third touchdown. Succeeding a failed two--point conversion to tie the game, Sycamore remained down by two to end the third quarter trailing 24-22.
The fourth quarter saw Withrow begin to wear down. The Tigers failed to effect the scoreboard as the Aviators scored two more touchdowns with their impounding ground attack Sess found the end zone for a fourth time and Alex Tillman added a rushing touchdown of his own.
Sycamore permanently placed themselves ahead of Withrow 38-24 with seven minutes left to play and that is how the score would stand. The two teams have now faced each other four times since 2004 and the Aviators have defeated the Tigers all of the four.
Up next Sycamore will welcome Springboro while Withrow will return home to face Anderson.
*Written by: Stefanie Theobald, TriStateFootball.com