ALBANY, Ohio — Down to the wire.
The River Valley football team battled host Alexander through three-scoreless quarters in Friday night’s Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division contest in Athens County, but the Spartans outscored the Raiders 10-6 in the final period en route to a four-point victory.
AHS (4-3, 2-2 TVC Ohio) broke the scoreless tie, when Connor Kimbrough scampered for a four-yard touchdown, followed by a successful extra-point kick by Marcus Spauliding that pushed the hosts ahead 7-0 with 9:39 remaining in the contest.
Alexander widen its lead to 10-0, following a 37-yard field goal by Spaulding at the 5:18 mark of the finale.
River Valley (0-7, 0-4) closed the deficit to 10-6, when Layne Fitch returned an 88-yard kickoff just 19 seconds later, but the visitors were unsuccessful on the point-after attempt.
Both teams were held scoreless for the remaining 4:59 of the contest, as the Spartans closed out the four-point triumph.
Despite the setback, the Raiders held a slight 9-8 advantage in first downs, while also claiming a 57-48 edge in total plays.
The Silver and Black were held to 89 yard total offense, with 56 yards coming by way of the rushing attack. Alexander, conversely, finished with 149 yards of total offense, with the majority coming by way of 84 yards through the air.
Both teams combined for nine penalties in the game, as the Spartans were flagged five times for 55 yards, while RVHS was penalized four times for 30 yards.
Alexander committed the contest’s lone turnover, as River Valley fumbled the ball on four occasions but lost none.
Trevor Simpson led the RVHS rushing attack with 58 yards on 17 carries, while Jared Reese followed with seven carries for 34 yards. Simpson also paced the Raiders’ receiving corp with one grab for 21 yards.
Jordan Burns finished with a 4-0f-14 passing performance for 33 yards.
Alexander’s ground attack was paced by Kimbrough who finished with 18 carries for 41 yards.
Kaleb Easley completed 12-of-20 passing, including one interception for 84 yards. Easley also rushed for 24 yards on 10 carries in the contest.
Michael Kelly grabbed nine catches for 61 yards to lead the Spartans, while Logan Neal was next with one catch for 13 yards.
Up next for River Valley, a home date with Vinton County.
Scott Jones can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext 2106.