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Eagles Pick Up First Win On Homecoming Night

Alyssa Kocher Named 2020 Magnolia Homecoming Queen

By Rick Loy - Staff Writer | Sep 30, 2020

Magnolia 2020 Homeconing Queen Alyssa Kocher is crowned by Magnolia High School Principal Kathy Smultz

The Magnolia Blue Eagles picked up their first win of the year against the Frontier Cougars at Alumni field Bill Stewart Memorial Stadium on September 25. The Eagles in total dominating fashion routed the explosive previously unbeaten Cougars 40-8 on Homecoming night. The Eagles broke a record setting 14 straight losses with the win.

Congratulations to Alyssa Kocher on being named 2020 Magnolia Homecoming Queen in ceremony before the start of the game.

Magnolia won the opening coin toss but deferred to the second half. Frontier returned the kickoff to their own 33-yard line to start the first drive of the night. The Cougars came into the game (4-0) and had not been challenged, averaging 55 points per game. On their first poseession they picked up just one first down, before they were forced to punt from their own 48-yard line.

Jason Beisel returned the punt to the Eagles own 26. With big runs by Silas McKeever and Beisel the Big Blue marched down the field with the offensive line opening big holes and McKeever going into the end zone from five yards out to make it 6-0. Brendan Mirandy added the kick after to make the score 7-0 for the home team with 5:09 left in the first quarter on their way to the rout.

The Cougars second drive of the game started at their own 35-yard line. Slade Amos picked up 4 yards on first down, and then he picked up a first down with a 7-yard tote. After an incomplete pass by QB JD Schmitt and a short gain by Noah Barnhart the Eagles pass rush got to Schmitt and caused a fumble. Freshman Kaden Johnson scooped up the fumble for the Eagles and took it to the Magnolia 16-yard line.

Beisel took the handoff and gained 13 yards to set the Blue up at the three. Next play McKeever from his QB position carried the final three yards for paydirt to make the score 13-0. Mirandy added the extra point with 2:29 left in first stanza to put the Eagles ahead 14-0.

After the Eagles kickoff, the high scoring Cougars had a big pass play for 25 yards to Cox from Schmitt, but the drive stalled at the Magnolia 38 forcing a Frontier punt.

The Eagles started at their own 18-yard line with McKeever picking up 13 yards to move the ball to their own 31-yard line. Beisel took the hand off from McKeever and rambled 19 yards out to the midfield stripe.

After a couple short runs, Beisel took the hand off and pitched the ball to Johnson who carried it for 22 yards and a first down at the Cougars 12-yard line. Quarterback McKeever picked up 4 yards to move the ball to the 8-yard line but was injured on the play with an ankle injury and would not return. Charlie Powell would put the Blue Eagles up 20-0 with 5:34 in second frame with a one-yard plunge. Mirandy added the kick to make the score 21-0.

Frontier finally scored on their next drive after two personal foul penalties gave the Cougars 30 yards and put the ball on the 13-yard line of the Eagles. Amos took the hand off from QB JB Schmitt and took it in from 13 yards out to make the score 21-6 the Blue Eagles at 5:08 in second quarter. Barnhart added the two-point conversion to make it 21-8, for the visitors only score on the night.

Coach Doc Chapman’s team would control the rest of the half and went into the halftime break leading 21-6.

The Eagles came out of the locker room with the senior captain and leader Silas McKeever in street clothes. But the team rallied around him and totally dominated the second half. Junior Marcus Barnes stepped up big from the running back position by toting the pigskin 14 times for 140 yards. Beisel had a big night as well picking up122 yards on 22 carries. McKeever added 64 stripes on only eight carries before the injury in the second quarter.

Magnolia scoring in the second half came from Mirandy passing to Damon Shimp from 5 yards out after being set up on a 53-yard run by Barnes. That made the score 27-8 with 9:23 left in the third quarter. Mirandy kick was wide and no good.

Frontier could not move the ball on the next series and turned it back over to the Eagles. Magnolia’s defense was stellar the entire game by shutting down the high-powered Cougars. The visitors were held to 149 yards of total offense and only 14 yards rushing on 18 carries. The home team Eagles finished with 387 total yards on the night.

The Eagles would get it back and drive down the field with big runs by Beisel and Barnes to move the ball to the 17-yard line. QB Mirandy would hit Sam Zombotti on a 17-yard pass to go up 33-8. Mirandy added the point after to make it 34-8 with 5:41 left in third quarter.

Freshman Johnson picked off a screen pass from quarterback Schmitt on the next Frontier series and returned it 25 yards for the score to end the scoring at 7:25 left in fourth stanza. Mirandy’s kick sailed wide left and the final score was 40-8.

Magnolia moved to (1-3) on the season with a trip next Friday October 2, to Woodsfield, OH., for a battle with Monroe Central. Frontier fell to (4-1) on the year.

Congratulations to Coach Chapman and the Blue Eagles on a total team effort in dismantling the Cougars for their first win of the season.