MINFORD, Ohio — A good start, but a bad finish.
The Minford football team defeated visiting Gallia Academy 42-6 in the first ever meeting between the two programs on Friday night in Scioto County. The Blue Devils (0-7) started off in the right direction, but the Falcons were able to right the ship.
The Blue and White jumped out to an early lead in the first quarter after Kole Carter connected with Eric Ward for a five yard touchdown. Minford answered back shortly after after Tyler Compton ran for a one yard touchdown.
During the second quarter, the Blue Devils were marching down the field until Ward coughed up the ball on the Gallia Academy 36-yard line. Simon Thoroughman recovered the ball for the Falcons and ran it back for another touchdown. Senior Sean Gambill added a pair of touchdowns to the Minford lead. The Falcons led the visitors 28-6 heading into halftime.
Minford junior Tyler Compton hustled down the field during the third period for a 47 yard Falcons touchdown. Casey Gaines rushed for a touchdown of his own to seal the victory for Minford.
Carter was 6-of-19 passing for 25 yards and one touchdown and also rushed for 154 yards for the Blue Devils. Ward had two carries for one yard, while Matt Bailey had three carries for negative yardage.
Bailey led with two catches for seven yards, followed by Devin Henry with two catches for six yards. Colton Campbell finished with one catch for seven yards, followed by Ward with one catch for five yards.
Garrett Burns led the Blue Devils defense with 6.5 tackles and one interception, while Carter had 4.5 tackles. Campbell, Austin Snodgrass and Quinton Yarger each had four tackles, followed by Bailey and Anthony Sipple with 2.5 tackles.
Noah Gray was 5-of-9 passing for 51 yards and also carried the ball for four yards for Minford. Gambill led the Falcons’ ground game with 13 carries for 105 yards, followed by Compton with six carries for 75 yards and Kody Kennedy with six carries for 38 yards.
Michael Stiltner had two catches for eight yards. Thoroughman, Gambill and Kennedy each had one catch for 21, 15 and seven yards respectively for Minford.
Minford led with a game-high 17 first downs, while Gallia Academy finished with five first downs. The Blue Devils led with 10 penalties for 115, while the Falcons had six penalties for 50 yards.
This was Gallia Academy’s first loss in Scioto County since 2009. The Blue Devils defeated Portsmouth 55-49 on Oct. 11, 2013. The Blue and White also lost their third road game of the season.
The Blue Devils will return home on Friday to host Warren in a Southeastern Ohio Athletic League contest. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Donald Lambert can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106