41-point 2nd quarter lifts Tigers to a share of N10 title

PHOTO BY REBECCA PADULA Seneca East's Elijah Riggs out runs Buckeye Central's defense in the game at Seneca East Friday.

ATTICA — Winless Buckeye Central held its own Friday against powerhouse Seneca East.

For one quarter.

The game was scoreless after one period, but then the second quarter happened.

The Tigers erupted for 41 points on their way to a 48-12 Northern 10 Athletic Conference victory, earning them a share of the title with Wynford, who beat Bucyrus 40-7.

“Pretty pleased tonight. It’s a really good way to end the regular season and to win a N10 championship. It’s been a long time coming,” Tigers coach Ed Phillips said. “It’s pretty emotional. It’s pretty special and they did it for a lot of people because it’s been a long time since we won one and they’ve been waiting for it. The community has one and they are a big part of it.

“Give Buckeye credit. To not have won a game and to play that hard, it’s a great tribute to their kids and their staff. I don’t think I’ve ever seen 40 points in a quarter and I think 20 of that was in a minute and half span. Our kids go as hard as they can from whistle to whistle and that’s why we made so many plays on defense tonight. I’m ecstatic right now.”

Buckeye Central (0-10, 0-7 N10) had a chance early to put some pressure on the Tigers (9-1, 6-1) after Brady Kerschner

intercepted a pass at Seneca East’s 39.

After four runs from Jacob Maxhimer, he fumbled, which stalled the drive.

After the scoreless first quarter, Seneca East senior Elijah Riggs went off.

Riggs caught a 3-yard touchdown pass from Chase Foos to open the scoring in the quarter. He added a 33-yard TD run and touchdown catches of 42 and 48 yards to give the Tigers a 27-0 advantage.

“We believe in the next man up and (Riggs) has gotten the opportunity and we knew he’s a really good ball player. That second-quarter display he put on was one that everyone will remember for a long time,” Phillips said.

Then the Bucks fumbled on two straight possessions, which led to touchdowns catches for Mason Foos from 20 and 22 yards from his brother Chase.

The Tigers led 41-0 at the half.

“The kids played really hard and it was 0-0 at the end of one quarter,” Bucks coach Chad Jensen said. “We can’t turn the ball over and we talked to our kids about that. It’s about effort and our kids are working hard trying to get the extra yards and Seneca East did a great job of trying to strip the ball from us.

“We have to take care of the ball because we have to drive the ball to keep the ball out of their hands. When you turn the ball over, they get the ball right away again and they are too good of an offense to allow that to happen. Our kids really played hard tonight and all season. I really can’t ask for much more.”

The Bucks scored first out of the half on a wide receiver pass. Quarterback Aiden McDougal threw a pass to Kerschner, who then tossed a 33-yard TD pass to a wide open Jake Heefner.

Foos capped off the Tigers scoring and his six-touchdown night with a 39-yard jaunt down the right sideline in the third quarter.

Maxhimer ran in an 11-yard score to begin the fourth.

Maxhimer ran 27 times for 139 yards, while Heefner caught two balls for 35 yards.

“We told our kids we will get this turned around,” Jensen said after the Bucks lost their 32nd consecutive game. “Our seniors played hard every game and they could have packed it in during the season after injuries and losing, but they didn’t and the other guys followed them. That’s a credit to them.

“Our kids know they can compete with anybody, but we have to continue to get kids out for football and then continue to work in the offseason. After this first season is under our belt, everything will be easier. We just need to continue to improve.”

Foos had a big day with his six TDs as he threw for 255 yards and ran for 58 more yards for the Tigers, who are slated to host Ashland Crestview (7-3) in Week 11, according to unofficial results from joeeitel.com.

Riggs had 49 yards rushing and added another 139 yards receiving, Dustin Powers carried the ball seven times for 118 yards and Mason Foos caught six balls for 87 yards.

“We’re excited about it. You take the excitement of the second season and combine with the experience of being there … just really can’t wait for it to get here,” Phillips said. “It’s exciting to win a N10 championship, but there is a part of me that can’t wait to get to Week 11 because we love this time of year.

“Week 11 is what every high school player dreams of and it’s time to take our swings at it.”