New Albany 33, Olentangy 14
Eagles pull away from Braves in second half
An Ohio Capital Conference Capital Division showdown last night turned into a chess match. But after a feeling-out process, New Albany made all the right moves.
The host Eagles broke open a close game by scoring on their first four series of the second half and knocked off previously unbeaten Olentangy 33-14 to take a half-game lead over Mount Vernon in the OCC Capital.
Quarterback Darron Lee and running back Alan Watson each ran for two touchdowns in the second half.
“We were running the same plays we ran in the first half, but we got an extraordinary blocking effort and coaches set up and schemed those plays really well,” said Lee, who has committed to Ohio State as a defensive back.
Lee scored on a 1-yard sneak on fourth-and-goal, intercepted a deflected pass over the middle by Braves quarterback Andrew Horstman, and sprinted 32 yards untouched on a keeper all in a span of 2 minutes, 31 seconds.
“We’ve been preparing for this game and looking forward to it for two weeks,” Lee said. “We were motivated from the start and were determined that they weren’t going to come in here and beat us on our home field.”
New Albany coach Mark Mueller said the Eagles just missed breaking big plays they had drawn up, and after Olentangy adjusted to them, New Albany readjusted.
“It was apparent to anybody that we were trying to get Darron isolated in the open field because he’s a tremendous athlete,” Mueller said. “Finally, there in the third quarter, we were able to put it all together.”
Conceding that his staff was one step behind New Albany’s, Olentangy coach Ed Terwilliger said the Eagles slyly exploited their edge in athleticism.
“We worked really hard in practice this week on three or four plays that they execute very well, and they were still able to beat us on them anyway,” Terwilliger said. “For starters, we had trouble matching up with their quarterback. Let’s face it, he’s the best athlete on the field, and he put them in position to hit some big plays on us.”
Winner of five straight games, New Albany (5-2, 4-0) drove 80 yards on 16 plays to open the game, with Leslie Anokye scoring on a 5-yard run.
Olentangy (6-1, 3-1) missed a field-goal attempt just before halftime, then the Braves failed on an onside kick to open the second half.
After Lee’s big plays, Watson ran 72 yards untouched for a touchdown. He added a 2-yard TD run just two minutes later to make it 33-0.