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Fighting Tigers cruise past Chillicothe 42-0


Tribune Sports Editor

Tyler Hager ran the ball only seven times, but his first carry may have been the biggest run of the game.

Hager’s punishing run on the game’s first play established the Ironton running game and the Fighting Tigers did not throw a pass en route to a 42-0 win over the Chillicothe Cavaliers on Friday at Tanks Memorial Stadium.

“Hager kind of set the tone with his run on the first play. He runs hard and he ran over someone and kept going,” Ironton coach Bob Lutz said of the 34-yard gain. “I think our guys just fed off of that.”

The Fighting Tigers (3-0) rolled up 355 yards rushing on 55 carries and they used 13 different running backs.

“We did a better job up front picking up their stunters. They guessed right a couple of times, but for the most part we got a hat on them,” said Lutz.

Trevor White led Ironton with 100 yards one just four carries including two touchdowns — one on an 81-yard jaunt. Hager had 74 yards and a score.

It took Ironton just six plays to cover 64 yards to start the game and it was 6-0.

After a three-and-out, Ironton went 63 yards in six plays Hager going the final yard for the score. Tyler Kratzenberg’s 19-yard run keyed the drive and White added the conversion for a 14-0 lead.

The Cavaliers (0-3) used a 28-yard pass from Luke Barnes to Zach Johnson to reach the Ironton 22.

But a fumbled handoff was picked up by Ironton defensive end Aaron Stevens and returned 77 yards for a touchdown.

“I saw one guy in front of me and I knew that I only had to beat him,” said Stevens.

Chillicothe fumbled the ball away two plays later and Stevens recovered again at the 14. Three plays later Tanner Schweickart bulled into the end zone from a yard out and it was 28-0.

The Cavaliers got to the 24 but Kratzenberg’s interception at the 5-yard line set up the next score. White followed the blocks of Jake Rawlins, Hager and Kratzenberg and went 81 yards untouched for the score.

“We hard from the coaches this week that we weren’t blocking to our potential. We blocked like we should every game,” said Rawlins.

Ironton second unit got the final score on a 1-yard run by Laron Beach to cap a 52-yard, 13-play drive.

Chillicothe finished with 209 total yards including 109 through the air, but only 39 yards rushing in the first half.