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Edison edges Buckeye Local, 33-21

Photo/ANDREW GRIMM BUCKEYE LOCAL running back Trey Hoover runs toward the end zone Friday at Edison

RICHMOND — Edison has lost three times this season, and after Friday night’s 33-21 win over Buckeye Local, it has won the next game each time.

“It says a lot about their character and their belief in each other,” Edison coach Mike Collopy said.

Coming off a tough loss at Harrison Central and having slipped out of position for a home playoff game, the Wildcats overcame giving up the first score and battened down the hatches after a late push from the Panthers, who were trying to stay in the Division V, Region 17 race.

Wildcats quarterback Gage Cline continued his stellar junior campaign, going 8 of 12 passing for 125 yards and three touchdowns, adding another 61 yards on the ground, including several key fourth down conversion runs and a late touchdown to help seal the deal.

The Panthers were able to limit Jacob Cusick to just one catch for seven yards. However, the rest of the Edison receiving corps stepped up in a big way, led by Tyler Petrey’s four catches for 75 and two scores.

Cline and Petrey connected for two scores in the third quarter to open up a 27-7 lead after three quarters after the Wildcats (6-3) led 13-7 at the break.

The Panthers, who fell to 2-5, did not go away quietly, however.

After scoring first and seeing the offense get bottled up for the next two quarters, coach Jim Hoover’s club put together a long scoring drive that started late in the third and extended early into the fourth quarter, capped by a 2-yard Trey Hoover run, his second score of the night, making it 27-14.

Edison went on a long march deep into Panther territory, but Talan McClurg fumbled at the Buckeye Local 10 and Ethan McHugh scooped it up and returned it 76 yards.

Two plays later, Skyler Ebright fired a strike to Johnny Leput to make it a one-score game with just under four minutes to play.

The ensuing onside kick did not travel 10 yards before a Buckeye player fell on it, though, and Edison got the ball back, Cline’s late 3-yard score and then a Cusick interception on the final Panthers possession sealing the Wildcat win.

“Last week, we kind of quit, this week, we didn’t,” coach Hoover said. “I’m proud of our kids for that. They fought their butts off the whole second half. I’m darn proud of them.

“We didn’t execute a couple offensive series early in the game, that cost us, and special teams ends up hurting us again, but I’m proud of our kids because they kept fighting.”

McClurg and Trey Hoover entered the week separated by one yard for the area lead. McClurg went for 109 yards, while Trey Hoover finished with 60 and two scores, 37 of which came on Buckeye’s 13-play scoring drive on the first possession of the game he capped with a 5-yard score.

Ebright, just a sophomore, had perhaps the best game of his young career going 10 of 14 passing for 94 and the TD to Leput (five catches for 36 yards) and adding another 63 yards on nine carries.

Edison enetered the week 11th in the region, and should enter next week’s Route 43 Bowl hosting Indian Creek in the top-10.

Buckeye Local returns home to host Harrison Central in the annual VALES Trophy Game on Senior Night.

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