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GAME OF THE WEEK: Urbana’s explosive first half stuns Chiefs

URBANA — Urbana came out firing and Bellefontaine had no answers for the Hillclimbers’ high-octane attack in the first half here Friday night.


Bellefontaine wide receiver Daniel Boy moves the ball up field through the Urbana defense after making a catch during their game Friday in Urbana. (EXAMINER PHOTO | TONY BARRETT)

More photos below.

Standout junior quarterback Nathan Mays and a talented group of skill players around him shredded Bellefontaine’s defense in the first half for a 35-0 halftime lead.

The Chiefs fought back with three scores in the second half, but it wasn’t nearly enough to atone for the slow start as Urbana came away with a 35-20 non-league victory.

“I was disappointed with our lack of execution in the first half,” said BHS head coach Toby Smith, who saw his team drop to 1-2. “We had opportunities to get off the field on defense, and we had some opportunities on offense. But we couldn’t execute on either side of the ball.”

Mays was 23-of-48 passing for 279 yards. Led by tailback Shane Ware, Urbana rushed for 129 yards.

“The kids executed the game plan well in the first half,” said Urbana head coach Nick Marino. “That was important because we didn’t play well at all in the second half.

“Give Bellefontaine credit, though. They are a very good football team.”

Bellefontaine mustered only 40 yards of offense on 20 plays in the first half.

Outside of forcing one fumble, the defense could not stop Urbana’s offense over the first two quarters. The Hillclimbers did not have to punt in the first half.

After recording an interception at the Bellefontaine 49-yard line, Urbana found the end zone quickly on its first offensive possession.

On its third play, Mays tossed a 15-yard TD pass to Ethan Edwards for a 7-0 Urbana lead.

Urbana marched deep into Bellefontaine territory on its next drive, but lost a fumble that Drake Roebuck recovered for the Chiefs.

However, Bellefontaine fumbled right back to Urbana on its next play.

Urbana capitalized with a touchdown a few plays later. Mays found Cody Grim on 8-yard TD connection, giving the home team a 14-0 lead with 2:28 left in the opening quarter.

The Hillclimbers blew the game open with three second-quarter touchdowns.

Shane Ware, who ran for 83 yards on 18 carries, scored on a 4-yard run to make the score 21-0.

Ware found the end zone again with 1:37 left until halftime, scoring from six yards out to put his team up 28-0.

Urbana wasn’t done. The Hillclimbers intercepted a Bellefontaine pass on their own 22-yard line with 54 seconds left.

Mays marched his team down the field in the final seconds of the half. He finished off the drive with a 5-yard TD pass to Grim with 3.8 seconds remaining until the intermission.

Bellefontaine fared much better in the second half. Junior quarterback Jake Kennedy put the Chiefs on the scoreboard late in the third quarter with an 8-yard TD pass to A.J. Gorham. Zach Schmid’s extra-point kick made the score 35-7.

Jordan Baughman broke off a 39-yard touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter. Schmid followed with the extra point, making the score 35-14.

The Chiefs found the end zone again with 1:57 remaining when Kennedy fired a 6-yard TD strike to Daniel Boy.

“We showed in the second half we are capable of doing a lot of good things, and we have to build on that,” said Smith.

Through three games, Bellefontaine has been plagued by inconsistent play.

“We need to continue to improve and come together, so we can put together an entire game instead of sporadic spurts of good football,” said Smith.

Bellefontaine ended the game with 253 yards of offense. Kennedy threw for 128 yards on 13-of-22 passing with two interceptions.

Boy caught nine passes for 82 yards, Calieb Johnson made two grabs for 31 yards and Gorham added two catches for 15 yards.

Baughman was Bellefontaine’s leading ground gainer with 76 yards on 13 rushes.

Bellefontaine is back in action Friday at Benjamin Logan.



Bellefontaine 0 0 7 13 – 20

Urbana 1421 0 0 –35


First downs 11 - 20

Total net yards 253 - 408

Rushes/yards 26/125 - 33/129

Passing 128 - 279

Comp/att/int 13/22/2 - 23/48/0

Punts/avg 4/19.8 - 1/54

Fumbles/lost 1/1 - 1/1

Penalties/yards 12/89 -  9/90



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