Prep football: Warriors fall to Marauders 43-18
By Mike Morrison
The Marietta Times
VINCENT – Meigs scored 23 unanswered fourth- quarter points to blow open what was a close ballgame, and defeated host Warren 43-18 Saturday night.
The Marauders entered the final period clinging to a narrow two-point lead before exploding for three touchdowns to notch their third victory of the season.
Michael Davis led the way for Meigs as he hauled in a touchdown reception and ran for three more including two in the decisive last stanza.
“We knew coming into the game tonight that we were similar teams as far as talent goes,” said Warren head coach Andy Schob. “We were close coming down to late in the third, they just came out every single play and played as hard as they could and we couldn’t respond.”
It would be the Warriors who got on the scoreboard first on a 25-yard field goal by Alex Miller gave the royal blue and white an early 3-0 advantage.
The Marauders took their first lead of the game on the second play of the second quarter when quarterback Kalieb Sheets found Ty Phelps for a 13-yard touchdown pass to make it 6-3.
Warren answered with what would prove to be its best drive of the night as it drove 80 yards on 10 plays with junior Jared Isner capping the drive with a 24-yard touchdown sprint.
Isner saw his first action of the season and racked up 53 yards in the game on 12 carries.
“It was good to get both Jared (Isner) and Aaron Sealey back in there tonight,” said Schob, in his fourth season as Warren head coach. “They both had some nice runs.”
It looked like the Warriors’ defense would stop Meigs and get the ball back late in the half with a chance to add to their 10-6 lead, but the Marauders converted a fourth and 19 in a big way as Davis caught a pass across the middle from Cody Bartrum and turned it into a 68-yard touchdown run with 4:14 to play.
Both Bartrum and Sheets had big nights splitting duty at quarterback for Meigs as the two combined to torch the Warrior defense for 361 yards passing.
The Warriors got the ball to open the second half and promptly drove inside the Meigs 10-yard line, bidding to jump back in front, but Sealey was stopped just short of the goal line to turn the ball over on downs to the Marauders.
The Warren defense came up huge as it tackled Sheets on the first play from scrimmage for a safety to knot the game at 12-12.
The Marauders got a big special teams play when the free kick after the safety sailed over the Warriors’ heads giving Warren unusually poor field position at its own 10 yard line.
The Meigs’ defense stopped the Warriors on three plays and took over possession at the Warren 43-yard line.
Davis did most of the work from there as he caught a 43-yard pass from Sheets on the first play of the drive and then sprinted 15 yards into the end zone for his second touchdown of the game.
Big Andrew Burt plowed into the end zone for the two-point conversion to stretch the Meigs lead to 20-12.
After the Warriors went three-and-out and were forced to punt the ball back to Meigs, bad field position cost the Marauders once again.
After a personal foul penalty backed Meigs all the way back to the one-yard line, a punt by Phelps, after a high snap, went just 21 yards giving the Warriors a very short field to work with.
Warren capitalized in just three plays on a six-yard touchdown run by quarterback Austin Klintworth.
The “Big Blue” attempt at a game-tying, two-point conversion was no good and Meigs went into the final period clinging to a 20-18 advantage.
Meigs answered on their next possession as it drove 76 yards in a little over a minute with Davis once again capping the drive with a 14-yard touchdown run.
Warren was unable to do much with the ball on its next possession as it turned the ball back over to the Marauders on downs at the Warren 39-yard line.
Six plays later, Davis scored again from two-yards out to give Meigs a 36-18 lead with just over seven minutes to go.
Davis racked up 280 total yards in the game, 101 on the ground and 179 more through the air.
Sheets completed nine-of-16 passes for 205 yards and a score while the freshman Bartrum was 5-of-8 for 156 yards and two touchdowns including the final score of the night on a 45-yard pass to none other than Sheets late in the final quarter.
Warren was paced by Klintworth who ran for 82 yards on 18 carries, while connecting on five-of-11 pass attempts for 90 yards.
Schob sees some areas that his team must improve upon before returning to the field Friday night when it hosts Jackson.
“We just didn’t respond with the same tempo that they (Meigs) were playing with,” said Schob. whose Warriors slip to 2-3 with the loss. “When somebody gives that kind of effort and intensity we’ve got to learn to respond with that much effort or more.”
The Marauders, who improved to 3-2 with the big road win, will next host Nelsonville-York Friday night in Pomeroy.