TUPPERS PLAINS, Ohio — A nearly 15 minute blackout in half of East Shade River Stadium on Friday evening could not help spark the Eastern Eagle offense, as Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division guest Belpre cruised to a 35-6 victory.
Early in the third quarter of play, the stadium lights on the home side of the stadium went dark, resulting in the stoppage of play until the lighting was restored.
As Eastern (2-4, 2-3 TVC Hocking)trailed 21-6 at that point, things did not improve for the home team as it celebrated Homecoming.
Belpre (2-4, 1-3) took the early lead on the first possession of the game, scoring on a one yard run by Manny Tullius. Jaime Barrett added the extra point kick to give Belpre the 7-0 lead just three and a half minutes into the game.
After Eastern fumbled on its first possession, Belpre added a second touchdown with 5:19 remaining in the first quarter. Dejon Bedgood scored on a 20 yard pass from Tavian Miller. The extra point kick was no good, making the score 13-0.
Eastern drove into Belpre territory on the next possession, but was forced to punt on a fourth down and six to go at the Belpre 35 yard line.
Belpre once again found the end zone on the resulting possession, with Tullius completing the option pass play to Bedgood for the 40 yard score. Tullius added the two point conversion run to make the score 21-0 with 7:11 remaining in the first half.
Eastern began the next drive on their own 35 yard line, but quickly moved to Belpre territory on a 27 yard pass from Dylan Bresciani to Zack Scowden. The hosts would score their only points of the game on a one yard run by Zach Browning with 2:37 on the clock in the second quarter.
The two teams exchanged punts to close out the first half.
Eastern received two, five yard delay of game penalties to begin the second half as the team was late returning to the field from the locker room. The penalties resulted in Belpre kicking off from midfield and the ball reaching the end zone. Eastern began the drive at their own 20 yard line. After moving the ball just five yards over the next three plays, Eastern lined up to punt , but instead ran the ball, coming up one yard short of the first down.
As Belpre lined up for its resulting possession, the lights on the home side of the field went out resulting in the temporary stoppage of play. Once lighting was restored, Belpre wasted little time reaching the end zone on an eight yard run by Tullius. Despite a five yard penalty moving the extra point attempt back five yards, Barrett sent the kick through the uprights. Belpre would maintain the 28-6 lead into the fourth quarter.
Eastern would run just two offensive plays in the final quarter of play. After Belpre was forced to punt early in the fourth quarter, Eastern’s second play of the resulting drive was a fumble which was recovered by Belpre.
Belpre took more than five minutes off the clock , scoring on a 21 yard run by Bedgood. Barrett added the extra point to give Belpre the 35-6 lead.
A fumble recovery by Belpre on the kickoff gave the visitors the ball back with 4:14 remaining on the clock. Belpre was able to run the clock out without returning the ball to Eastern.
Eastern was led offensively by Browning with 26 yards on seven carries and Scowden with six carries for 21 yards. As a team, Eastern had 29 carries for 54 yards.
Dylan Brescini led the hosts in passing with four completions on eight attempts resulting in 87 yards. Daschle Facemyer had two catches for 35 yards while Scowden (27 yards) and Browning (25 yards) each had one catch.
Offensively, Belpre was lead by Tullius with 81 yards on 23 carries, nine yards receiving and 40 yards passing. Tullius was also responsible for three of Belpre’s touchdowns. Bedgood was also involved in three scoring plays, adding 39 yards rushing and 64 yards receiving. Miller lead the Golden Ealges in passing with five completions for 58 yards.
Eastern travels to Trimble next week, while Belpre hosts South Gallia.