Tomcats stymie Southern, 21-12

By Alex Hawley -

GLOUSTER, Ohio — The Tomcats simply shut down the Tornadoes’ greatest strength.

The Southern football team was held to just 67 rushing yards on Friday Night at Glouster Memorial Stadium in Athens County, as Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division host Trimble clawed its way to a 21-12 victory.

The Tomcats (5-2, 4-1 TVC Hocking) — who featured the run on 46 of their 48 offensive plays in the win — scored the game’s opening touchdown at the 8:07 mark of the first quarter, as Cameron Kittle broke a 50-yard run on fourth down. Max Hooper kicked in the point-after, giving the hosts a 7-0 lead.

The Tornadoes (5-2, 3-2) answered the touchdown on the ensuing drive, as Dylan Smith hauled in a 29-yard pass from Logan Drummer with 4:46 left in the first. The Tomcats blocked Southern’s point-after kick, however, leaving the hosts with a 7-6 advantage.

Nearly a full quarter after Southern trimmed the margin to one point, Trimble gained some breathing room and a two-possession lead. With 4:47 remaining in the first half, Hooper scored on a 29-yard run and then ran in the two-point conversion to give the hosts a 15-6 lead.

The Tomcats extended their lead to 21-6 with 2:06 remaining in regulation, as Conner Wright scored on a 19-yard run.

Southern went on to score with 36 seconds left, when Drummer connected with Smith for a 15-yard pass. The extra-point kick failed, leaving SHS behind two possessions and allowing Trimble to seal the 21-12 victory.

Despite being outgained 254-to-194 in total offense, the Tornadoes held a 14-to-12 advantage in first downs. The Purple and Gold committed the game’s lone turnover, an interception. Trimble was penalized nine times for a total of 97 yards, while Southern was sent back just three times for 30 yards.

Smith led the SHS offense with 13 carries for 76 yards and four receptions for 46 yards and two touchdowns. Drummer had three yards on three carries and completed 8-of-19 passes for 127 yards, with two touchdowns and zero interceptions.

Riley Roush carried the ball a dozen times and gained 20 yards for Southern, while Gage Shuler combined one carry and one reception for 15 total yards.

Weston Thorla, Austin Baker and Brody Dutton each caught one pass for SHS, earning 41, 16 and seven yards respectively.

Hooper — who had Trimble’s only reception for six yards — led THS on the ground with 132 yards and two scores on 20 carries. Kittle was 1-of-2 passing for six yards and rushed for 66 yards and one score on 13 carries.

Wright had 49 yards and one score on 14 totes for the hosts, while Tyler Roback had one two-yard rush.

Trimble improves to 28-1 all-time against the Tornadoes, winning the last 28 meetings.

Next Friday Southern will return home for a clash with league-leading Waterford, while the Tomcats will welcome another Meigs County guest in Eastern.

By Alex Hawley

Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.

Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.