Unbeaten Butler spoiled Wilmington’s return to Alumni Field Friday night, as the Aviators defeated the Hurricane, 29-20.
Although Wilmington closed the gap to 16-14 in the third quarter, the Aviators regained the momentum and a pair of fourth quarter touchdowns derailed any hopes for a Hurricane comeback.
WHS falls to 2-1 on the season.
“We certainly had our chances tonight, but we simply did not execute,” said WHS coach Scott Killen. “We moved the ball, but missed too many chances to score. Give credit to Vandalia, they are clearly a very good football team.
We’ve got to find a way to grind it out and, most of all, execute. That’s what we’ll be working on before next week. It’s all about being able to execute and we will find the players who will make it happen.”
Butler capitalized on a WHS miscue in the opening quarter when WHS punter Matt Creditt was forced to take a safety on a errant snap from center from his own end zone, giving the Aviators a 2-0 lead.
Wilmington went in front on a 15-yard run by Creditt with 6:56 to play in the first half and Brady Henry’s PAT gave WHS a 7-2 lead, which did not last very long. Matt Grossman scored on a 33-yard scamper and kicker Andrew Boren’s PAT kick gave the Aviators a 9-7 lead at the intermission.
Wilmington’s second miscue of the night, a crucial fumble deep in their own territory enabled the Aviators to extend the lead with 9:00 to play in the third quarter. Noah Ballard rambled 33 yards to paydirt and Boren’s boot extended the Aviators’ lead to 16-7.
Some Hurricane “razzle-dazzle” with a successful fake punt enabled WHS to cut the deficit on the next drive. Creditt found D.J. Ames for a first down at the VB 20 and the drive was capped by Marlyn Frisco’s six-yard TD run at the 5:11 mark. Henry’s PAT cut the margin to 16-14 in favor of Butler.
BHS extended its lead at the 3:02 mark when Treylann Sanders caught a 33-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Chandler Crane, making the score 22-14. The Aviators came up short on their attempt for the 2-point conversion.
Wilmington closed the gap to 22-20 with 4:48 remaining when Creditt hooked up with Austin Camp on an 18-yard TD catch. The attempt for the potential game-tying two-point conversion failed.
Vandalia nailed it down on a late fourth quarter touchdown drive, capped by Logan’s Flatt’s 33-yard run and Boren’s successful PAT, giving the Aviators the 29-20 margin of victory.
Next week the Hurricane hopes to rebound with a victory in their South Central Ohio League opener, versus the McClain Tigers.
Follow Bill on Twitter @lierjet.