STEUBENVILLE – As Davey Tunon hurdled into the end zone, the Steubenville defenders clapped as the referee called holding.
The Falcons would go on to miss a field goal, and Steubenville would score a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage that followed. That swung the momentum as the Big Red defeated the Falcons 37-18 in a matchup of teams with state title aspirations.
What could have been at least an 18-12 Falcon lead quickly turned into an 18-10 Big Red advantage.
McSurley said the holding call, “was very questionable. But no excuses.”
Clinton-Massie would tie the game in the third quarter. On third and goal from the 2, Fentress faked the handoff and ran around the left end untouched for a score. Tunon ran in the conversion to tie it at 18.
Steubenville would answer. Dimitri Collaros — brother of former UC and current Hamilton Tiger-Cat quarterback Zach — would find Charles Reeves for a 29-yard touchdown. Another missed conversion kept the score 24-18 Big Red.
After Clinton-Massie would turn the ball over on downs, the Big Red marched down field again. Collaros found Devin Ferguson for a 27-yard touchdown with 9:41 left. Steubenville led 30-18. They would tack on a late score for the final margin.
“We got exactly what we wanted out of this game,” McSurley said. “This is one of the most difficult places to play. Not a whole lot of teams step up to play these guys. We took on the challenge of coming four hours.”
While the Falcons didn’t get the win, they got more out of this week two game than a previous week two opponent.
“We’re a much better football team than if we would have stayed home and played somebody like Waynesville,” McSurley said. “You play a team like Waynesville and you don’t get any better. When you come out here and play these guys and do what we did, that’s why we came to play the game.”
The loss does no damage to the Falcons’ playoff aspirations.
“This game doesn’t mean anything,” McSurley said. “We’re going to look and see how we can improve as a team and get better. But I’m pleased with the effort my kids gave. It was just a hell of a ballgame.”
At halftime, Steubenville presented Clinton-Massie athletic director Cindy Running and high school principal Barrett Swope with a $200 check to go to the Chayse Wolf family.
CM — Hunter Fentress 1-yard run (Chris Demler kick) 8:43
ST — Johnny Blue 2-yard run (kick failed) 4:05
CM — Demler 30-yard field goal 9:56
ST — Blue 1-yard run (pass failed) 6:27
ST — Lawrence-Burke 80-yard pass to Petteway (kick failed) 2:11
CM — Fentress 2-yard run (Tunon run) 4:18
ST — Dimitri Collaros 29-yard pass to Charles Reeves (kick failed) 2:11
ST — Collaros 27-yard pass to Devin Ferguson (pass failed) 9:41
ST — Blue 1-yard run (Mark Smith kick) 5:47
PLAYS CM 62; ST 54. FIRST DOWNS CM 17; ST 18. RUSHES-YARDS CM 43-171; ST 29-196. PASSING YARDS: CM 153, ST 302. COMPLETIONS-ATTEMPTS-INTERCEPTIONS CM 11-19-0, ST 18-25-0. TOTAL YARDS CM 324; ST 498. PENALTIES-YARDS CM 7-35; ST 8-54. FUMBLES-LOST CM 2-1; ST 1-1.
Rushing (carries-yards) – CM Wolf 9-22, Fentress 5-12 2 TDs, Tunon 22-114, Hunt 6-15. ST Lawrence-Burke 6-68, Blue 16-82 3 TDs, Ferguson 5-41.
Passing (completions-attempts-interceptions) – CM Fentress 11-19-0 153 yards. ST Collaros 17-24-0 222 2 TDs; Lawrence-Burke 1-1-0 80 yards TD.
Receiving (receptions-yards) – CM Tunon 3-46, Williams 3-63. ST Petrides 5-45, Reeves 5-100 TD, Ferguson 3-60 TD.