The Pilots' Jordan Sapp rushed for 128 yards and scored five touchdowns to lead River to a hard-fought 40-34 victory over Shenandoah Oct. 18.
The game saw seven different lead changes before the Pilots put the finishing touches on a nice eight play, 43-yard drive, all on Sapp runs capped off by a one yard plunge.
Sapp started the Pilot scoring in the opening period on a four-yard scamper, and Colton Wright split the uprights for a 7-0 Pilot lead. Shortly afterward, Shenandoah finished a long drive with a one-yard touchdown scamper of their own to take the lead with a two-point conversion run.
River reclaimed the advantage B. Whetsell stepped in front of a Zep pass and took it 24 yards to paydirt for a Pilot pick six. The Wright PAT was off the mark, but River held the upper hand, 13-8 in the second period of play.
It didn't take the Zep's long to score, making good on a 74-yard run. However, the PAT pass failed and the hosts took back the lead, 14-13. Sapp would finish off the Pilots' next drive with a 10-yard scoring run, but the two-point conversion pass was off the mark and River led, 19-14 midway into period two.
Shenandoah would score on a 39-yard pitch-and-catch and convert on its extra point kick to forge ahead once more. But, the Pilots would answer with a Sapp three- yard TD run and Wright would split the uprights once more to forge ahead 26-21 at the break.
Shenandoah opened the second half with a 36-yard touchdown pitch-and-catch to retake the lead, 28-26, after the successful conversion kick.
The Pilots added a one-yard Sapp touchdown run and scored the clincher after a bad Shenandoah snap sailed over their punter and the Pilots recovered it at the five yard line. Two plays later, Sapp scored and Wright was true on the kick.
The Zeps scored late in the game on a 10-yard pass, but it was a little to late and the Pilots earned their third straight victory of the season.
Bryce Cross followed Sapp with 38 yards on his only tote, while Brok Cross tacked on 11 yards and Joey Flannery claimed five yards for River. Flannery also converted 4-6 for 50 yards, with Bryce Cross hauling in two for 20 yards and Bailey Reusser two others for 30 yards.
River will try to make it four in a row this Friday at Flannery Field at 7 p.m. against Buckeye Trail.