Pilots Lose Finale In Playoffs
The Danville Blue Devils scored twice in the last two minutes of the first half Nov. 2 and went on to claim a 30-6 victory over the River Pilots in the Ohio Division VI, Region 23 quarterfinals. River ended its season 7-4.
The Pilots had several opportunities to get points on the board in the first half, but both times they came up short missing field goal opportunities. They also recovered a Danville fumble inside the Pilot red zone, but also came up a little short.
After a scorless first period, the Pilots punted with two minutes remaing in the first half. But, a low snap led to a fumble that Danville recovered in the end zone for a touchdown. On the Pilots’ next series, they again fumbled and the Blue Devils scored four plays later to go into the beak up 14-0.
River failed to cash in on a fourth and short on its first drive of the second half. That allowed allowed Danville to take posession and anwser with its own TD and a commanding 22-0 lead. Instead of cutting its deficit, the Pilots fell behind three touchdowns.
The Pilots had success through the air up to this point, but went to the ground for its only touchdown. Nick Asturi bullied his way into the endzone from two yards out to put the Pilots on the scoreboard. The two point conversion attempt failed, leaving River down 22-6.
However, Danville added a late TD to push the final score to 30-6.
Asturi paced the Pilots with 48 yards rushing, while Cody Caldwell connected on 13 passes for 118 yards. Kameron Brown hauled in six passes for 63 yards, while Bryce Cross added 44 yards on four receptions. Asturi caught one pass for six yards and Dallas Neccessary hauled in one pass for five yards.
Defensively, Jonathan Stewart made 11 solo tackles, assisted on three others, while making one stop for negative yardage. her also forced two Danville fumbles. Bryce Cross made 10 tackles and had an interception, while Caldwell and Asturi each made eight tackles. Caldwell caused two fumbles, while Asturi recovered two.
In addition, Brandon Reusser made seven tackles, including one for loss of yardage. He also recoved a fumble. Jordan Sapp had seven tackles and recovered a fumble, while Brett Rosen and Evan Eggleston combined for 10 tackles, four of which went for los of yardage and a pair of quarterback sacks.
River will lose 10 seniors to graduation in the spring, including its to top quarterbacks Cody Caldwell and Logan Lucas. Also a gone for next season will be Garth Richter, Asturi, Stewart, Neccessary, Brown, Eggleston, Thomas Tharp and JD Dotson.
“These seniors will be missed,” said RIver Head Coach Mike Flannery. “They have contributed their blood, sweat and tears to Rver football.”