Tim Feasel of the Olentangy High School football team didn't expect to be on the field much on Friday, Aug. 26, but the sophomore made the play that counted at the end.
Feasel intercepted a pass by Olentangy Orange quarterback Daniel Bull at the Olentangy 45-yard line with 40 seconds remaining as the host Braves held on for a 27-21 victory on the opening night for both schools in front of a record crowd of 7,214 at Braves Stadium.
"I never expected to be on the field much more than punt and kick returns," said Feasel, who filled in for senior linebacker Josh Perry after the Ohio State recruit was ejected in the fourth quarter following a hit on Bull. "Coach (Jeremy) Arends (the defensive coordinator) told me to stay back 10 yards off the line and not to worry about the run. He said they might go my way and (Arends) was right as always."
Olentangy took its six-point lead when Perry scored on a 19-yard run with 7:17 to play, but Josh Baumbach's extra-point attempt was blocked.
Perry finished with 99 yards on 14 carries, also scoring on a 5-yard run, but was ejected after hitting Bull near the Orange sideline with 5:33 to play.
"I don't know what happened until I see the film," Olentangy coach Ed Terwilliger said. "Josh said he just pushed him, but the officials said he hit him. If that happened, he'll miss next week (against Delaware)."
An explosive first half turned quiet in the third quarter.
Orange senior Brandon Schoen rushed for touchdowns of 27 and 18 yards in the first half, rolling up 85 yards in nine carries. He also had an interception, but cramping problems limited him to a total of three plays in the second half, all on defense.
"I have no idea why we were cramping up so badly," Orange coach Brian Cross said. "We made sure they were hydrated and even made them drink pickle juice yesterday because that sort of thing is supposed to help.
"We were missing our quarterback (Kofi Hill, out indefinitely with an ankle injury) and then cramps took away Brandon, our tight end (Taylor Hardy) and several other key players. We were playing with j.v. players most of the second half, but you can't take anything away from Olentangy. They took advantage of our situation like a good team will."
The Braves rushed for 245 yards on 49 carries led by Perry. Tyler Webb had 84 yards on 15 carries with a 38-yard touchdown to tie the game at 21 with 11:52 to play. Derrick Rodgers added 56 yards on 12 carries.
Olentangy did not throw a pass after starter Andrew Horstman injured his shoulder late in the second quarter. He was 5-for-6 passing for 93 yards with a 35-yard touchdown pass on a diving reception in the end zone by Will Brett.
"They got some big plays out of Schoen in the wing-T and you expect that," Terwilliger said. "We got the big play on the home-run pass to Will Brett and later in the game we put it all on our offensive line to win the game and they were able to do that for us."
The Braves had 10 penalties for 85 yards and Orange had one for five yards.
Luke Wolford had a 44-yard punt return for the Pioneers. Bull was 2-for-10 passing for 26 yards.
"We won, but we definitely saw some things that we could work on," Terwilliger said. "We have to get better for next week."
ORANGE 7 14 0 0 -- 21
OLENTANGY 0 14 0 13 -- 27
OO--Schoen 18 run (Schrader kick)
OL--Perry 5 run (Baumbach kick)
OL--Brett 35 pass from Horstman (Baumbach kick)
OO--Schoen 27 run (Schrader kick)
OO--Wolford 44 punt return (Schrader kick)
OL--Webb 38 run (Baumbach kick)
OL--Perry 19 run (kick blocked)