GOSHEN — A little razzle-dazzle early in the second half Friday night helped keep the King of the Road trophy in Blanchester for another year, as the Wildcats pulled away from Goshen for a 28-0 victory.
Blanchester led 7-0 at the half thanks to a Bryce Sipple touchdown with 1:00 left before the break. Wildcat head coach Jon Mulvihill felt his team had all the momentum. This led to two decisions.
The first was to onside kick to open the second half, which Blanchester recovered at the Goshen 47.
“We had the momentum, so I figured, why not?” Jon Mulvihill said.
Following a timeout to get the offensive alignment right, the Wildcats unleashed a modified flea-flicker.
Sipple took the snap and handed the ball to Adam Frump, who then pitched it back to Michael Mulvihill. Mulvihill, also a quarterback, had his choice of receivers running wide open down the field.
He spotted Gabe McVey down the middle and tossed it to him for a 47-yard touchdown. The extra point made it 14-0, and Goshen seemed demoralized.
“We’ve been working on that play all week, just waiting for the right time to run it,” Jon Mulvihill said. “That was the perfect time to run it. That changed the game for sure.”
Mulvihill and Frump would add rushing touchdowns in the second half to provide the final margin.
Sipple finished with 137 yards passing and 49 yards rushing and a touchdown. Mulvihill had the 47-yard touchdown pass to go with 60 yards rushing and a rushing touchdown. McVey finished with 93 yards receiving while Dustin Trace pulled in two spectacular grabs for 60 yards.
The lone bright spot on offense for Goshen was quarterback Brice Brewer, who rushed for 89 yards on just nine carries. However, he ended the night in a sling after injuring his left shoulder with 2:57 left in the third quarter.
Blanchester dominated the second half. The Wildcats outgained Goshen 199 to 48 in yardage. For Goshen, 25 of those 48 yards came on one pass play late in the third quarter.
Blanchester’s defense held Goshen to just one first down in the second half and zero third-down conversions on five attempts. The Wildcats ran 28 second-half plays to just 17 for Goshen.
“I put in a new defense at halftime,” Jon Mulvihill said. “We went straight man-to-man, 5-2 defense. I’ve got two middle backers that when there is nobody blocking them, they’re pretty good.”
After snapping a five-game losing streak to Goshen (0-5) last year, Blanchester has now won two in a row. This was the fifth time the game has been contested at Jim Brown Stadium in the last six meetings.
For Blanchester (1-3), it was a satisfying result after a tough four weeks. Three challenging games to open the season were followed by a matchup with Woodward being called off just hours before kickoff.
“The first three weeks did not go as planned,” Jon Mulvihill said. “To have our game canceled last week when I thought we were going to win big was tough on the kids and tough on the coaches. We put a lot of work into that game, and we were really looking forward to playing it.”
Now begins SBC National Division play. Bethel-Tate is the defending champion, but the entire division has fared well in the non-conference. Blanchester’s five upcoming opponents will enter week six with either a 16-7 or a 15-8 overall record, pending East Clinton’s result Saturday.
“CNE next week, that’s the one we’re going to focus on,” Jon Mulvihill said. “(The division) is not a cake-walk. It’s not what it has been in years past. It is going to be more challenging than it has been.”
Friday, Sept. 17, 2021
At Jim Brown Stadium, Goshen
Blanchester 28, Goshen 0
B – Bryce Sipple 8-yard run (Bryan Bandow kick) 1:00
B – Michael Mulvihill 47-yard pass to Gabe McVey (Bandow kick) 11:50
B – Mulvihill 22-yard run (Bandow kick) 5:08
B – Adam Frump 10-yard run (Bandow kick) 8:41
PLAYS: B 57; G 46. FIRST DOWNS: B 18; G 9. RUSHES-YARDS: B 41-179; G 33-146. PASSING YARDS: B 184; G 34. COMPLETIONS-ATTEMPTS-INTERCEPTIONS: B 8-16-0; G 3-13-0. TOTAL YARDS: B 363; G 180. PENALTIES-YARDS: B 8-60; G 5-50. FUMBLES-LOST: B 1-1; G 2-2.
Rushing (carries-yards): B Michael Mulvihill 8-60 TD; Bryce Sipple 17-49 TD; Dameon Williams 1-21; Adam Frump 2-17 TD; Bryan Bandow 5-14; Dustin Trace 1-13; Sebastian Smith 4-12. G Brice Brewer 9-89; Gabe Cope 14-47; Andrew Morris 4-10; Tyler Kilgore 4-4; Camden Barrial 1-3; Warren Hoover 1-(-7).
Receiving (catches-yards): B Gabe McVey 3-93 TD; Dustin Trace 2-60; Sebastian Smith 2-35. G Camden Barrial 2-36; Austin Lewis 1-(-2).
Passing (completions-attempts-interceptions) B Bryce Sipple 7-14-0 137 yds; Michael Mulvihill 1-2-0 47 yds TD. G Brice Brewer 2-11-0 9 yds; Tyler Kilgore 1-2-0 25 yds.
Matt Sexton covers high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @MattSextonPxP.