EAST LIVERPOOL - The East Liverpool Potters came up just short in an exciting 27-25 loss to the Cambridge Bobcats last night at Patterson Field.
East Liverpool falls to 1-3 while the Bobcats improve to 2-2.
The Potters pulled to within one at 20-19 after Zach English scored from 3 yards out with 2:59 remaining. The conversion pass attempt failed.
Following that, the Potters recovered the onside kick, but fumbled the ball away on the next play. Four plays later, Cambridge's Josh Lewis churned in from 3 yards out for the score. Eric Fox's conversion kick made it seemingly safe for Cambridge as they led 27-19.
East Liverpool's Marcus Beebout had other ideas as he picked up Fox's ensuing kickoff at his own 3-yard line and bolted 97 yards down the middle of the field, cutting Cambridge's lead to 27-25 with 1:28 remaining in the fourth quarter. On the extra point attempt, the Potters tried to tie the score by running around left end but it came up, leaving the Potters on the short end of a 27-25 score.
Beebout's 97-yard kick return is the second longest in Potter history, being bested only by 99-yarders by Eric Rayl in 1990 versus Edison Local, Tom Gill in 1994 versus West Geauga and Jeff Wright in 1997 versus Buckeye Local.
"We did not let up. We left it all on the field and that's why it hurts so much right now," said East Liverpool head coach Rick Prescott. "I am so proud of our kids. They could have let up, but they didn't."
After a scoreless first quarter, the visiting Bobcats got on the board following an interception by Riley Hayhurst which he returned to the Potter 12-yard line. One play later, shifty Ivan Gadson twisted and turned his way into the end zone for Cambridge.
East Liverpool answered with a 13-play, 80-yard drive capped by English's two-yard run. Signalcaller Kade Reynolds toted the ball seven times on the drive, picking up 59 yards. Justin Barr's conversion kick knotted the contest at 7-7 with 2:27 remaining in the half.
"We were catching their linebackers following our jet motion," said Prescott. "That's why we kept running our quarterback ice."
Battling the clock and the Potter defense, Cambridge hustled down the field, getting as far as the East Liverpool 15-yard stripe. Their ninth penalty of night backed them up to the 20 before Fox boomed a 38-yard field goal with just 0.7 seconds remaining before intermission.
Cambridge found the end zone in the third quarter as Mo Latham raced in from 11 yards out. Fox's conversion kick made it 17-7 in favor of Cambridge.
The Potters again answered with a long drive, marching 85 yards in 11 plays. The big plays which kept the drive alive were pass completions from Reynolds to John Miscuk (21 yards), Marcus Beebout (16 yards) and Jason Kutzner (10 yards). Faced with second-and-6 at the Cambridge 34, Reynolds bootlegged right and lofted a spiral to tight end Austyn Dozier, who raced the rest of the way for a Potter touchdown. The extra point attempt was wide left leaving the Potters trailing 17-13.
A Fox 34-yard yard field goal gave Cambridge a 20-13 lead with 7:24 remaining in the game.
English led the Potter ground attack with 129 yards on 18 carries. He also caught two passes for 72 yards.
East Liverpool gained 348 yards in total offense, 185 rushing and 163 passing. They picked up 21 first downs.
The Potters are home again Friday, hosting John Marshall. This is the Potter's fourth consecutive home game. Cambridge hosts Zanesville.
Cambridge's Fox had a successful 48-yard field goal last week versus Granville negated by a penalty.
It was in the writeup of the game between East Liverpool and Cambridge in 1917 that the East Liverpool gridders were first referred to as "The Potters". Previously they had been referred to as "High" or "Blue & White". Local editor Jemiah Simms is credited with this nickname.
There is no JV game this week.
EAST LIVERPOOL 0-7-0-18-25
C-Ivan Gadson, 12 run (Eric Fox kick)
EL Zach English, 2 run (Justin Barr kick)
C- Eric Fox, 38 field goal
C- Mo Latham, 11 run (Fox kick
EL- Austyn Dozier, 34 pass from Kade Reynolds (kick failed)
C- Fox, 34 field goal
EL- English, 3 run (pass failed)
C- Josh Lewis, 3 run (Fox kick)
EL-Marcus Beebout, 97 kick return (run failed)
Total Yards 244348
RUSHING-CAMBRIDGE Caleb Tingle 12-71, Ivan Gadson 8-84, Michael Widroudt 1-0, Mo Latham 9-50, Josh Lewis 1-3, EAST LIVERPOOL Zach English 18-129, Kade Reynolds 22-53, John Miscuk 2-6, Kaleb Tallent 4-(-3), Marcus Beebout 1-(-4), D.J. Austin 1-4
PASSING-CAMBRIDGE Caleb Tingle 3-10-36, EAST LIVERPOOL Kade Reynolds 9-17-163-1int
RECEIVING-CAMBRIDGE Tone Turner 1-8, Logan Helmick 1-4, Errik Snell 1-24, EAST LIVERPOOL Kaleb Tallent 1(-2), John Miscuk 2-27, Marcus Beebout 1-16, Jason Kutzner 1-10, Austyn Dozier 2-42, D.J. Austin 1-5, Zach English 2-72
FUMBLE RECOVERIES-CAMBRIDGE Mo Latham, Logan Helmick, EAST LIVERPOOL