Week 2 in Ohio for high school football unfolded on Friday night and that usually means we see teams tweaked from the week before. The FOX19 Friday Prep Rally headed to the East side to watch the Loveland Tigers go head-to-head with the Lebanon Warriors for the third year in a row. They have split the series the past two seasons. Loveland fought to the end, but came up just six points short, falling to the Warriors 26-20.
Lebanon (1-1) was the first to put points on the board thanks to senior running back Aaron Abbott, who broke a 55 yard run into the endzone. Anthony Wene's extra point put the Warriors up 7-0.
Loveland (1-1) answered when junior quarterback Ryne Terry connected with wide receiver Tony Griffin for a 10-yard pass and a TD, tying the game at 7-7.
The Tigers pulled ahead by seven early in the second quarter on a 4-yard TD run by junior tailback Graham Peters.
However, the Warriors would not give up easily though because they ran the ball all the way down the field in the final 1:30 of the first half before quarterback Luke Morgan scored on a QB keeper making the score 14-14 at half.
--Highlights: FOX19 Friday Prep Rally
--Postgame: Luke Morgan, Lebanon
--Postgame: Shawn Lamb, Lebanon
Lebanon got the ball to start the second half, but fumbled it on the 20-yard line. Loveland recovered the ball, but failed to use this to their advantage.
The Warriors wouldn't squander their next opportunity to put points on the board as wide receiver Jared Nealey pulled in a 31-yard pass from Morgan, to give Lebanon a - point lead with only 3:08 remaining in the third quarter. A missed extra point by Anthony Wene kept the margin at six points and that is where it would stand after three quarters of play.
Lebanon seemed to be take control of the game when they scored with 7:38 left in the fourth quarter as Aaron Abbott collected his second score of the night on 11-yard run. The two-point conversion attempt failed, leaving the score 26-14 Lebanon.
Loveland cut the deficit in half on a 7-yard touchdown run with 2:43 remaining in the fourth quarter by Ryne Terry. Lebanon would chew up the clock from there as they completed upset.
"After we scored that touchdown (ending the first half) we all knew we were going to win," said the Warriors' quarterback Luke Morgan. "It was just a matter of coming back out and getting it done."
Both Loveland and Lebanon now share an even 1-1 record.
"It wasn't very difficult to get (the Warriors) motivated," said Lebanon Coach Shawn Lamb after the game. "We had a bad loss last week and we emphasized getting physical and playing smarter and our kids responded to that."
Lebanon returns home next week to host Sydney while Loveland heads to the West side to take on Oak Hills.
Written by: Stefanie Theobald, TriStateFootball.com