Tuesday, January 16, 2018 Elyria 11°

The Blitz

Dante Redwood big as Midview hangs on to beat Amherst


AMHERST — It all came down to Amherst’s best against Midview’s youngest.

The Comets were inside the Midview 20-yard line late in the game, looking to put one in the end zone and go for a game-tying 2-point conversion to complete a furious comeback.

Middies sophomore cornerback Dante Redwood stood tall.

The 5-foot-8, 145-pounder blanketed Amherst junior receiver Aaron Kelley, breaking up three consecutive passes to help seal Midview’s 21-13 win.

“I liked our chances with Aaron Kelley in the corner against their sophomore DB,” Amherst coach Chad DiFranco said. “To his credit he made some plays. Aaron Kelley had a heck of a game. We’re going to keep shooting our bullets and using our weapons. That’s all you can do.”

Midview coach Bill Albright was not surprised Redwood was able to make the critical plays down the stretch.

“He’s playing for us because he’s a great athlete,” Albright said. “He’s gotten better and better every week. From the first scrimmage against Avon Lake to where we’re at right now, his improvement has been outstanding. We look forward to having him for the next couple of years.”

The Comets (0-2) got on the board first when Jordan Irvin capped a four-play, 30-yard drive with a 9-yard touchdown run. Amherst was set up with a short field when middle linebacker Derek Eibon tipped a Cody Callaway pass to Justin Silva, who intercepted the ball at midfield and returned it to the 30.

The Middies (2-0) scored the next 21 points, all on Callaway touchdown passes. First he found Eric Lauer from 9 yards out early in the second quarter. Later in the second he hit Lauer on a scrambling 26-yarder into the right corner of the end zone.

Midview extended the lead to 21-6 in the third quarter when Callaway connected with Zac Wilson from

26 yards.

The Comets pulled to within a score early in the fourth when senior quarterback Eric Lamb hit Eibon with a 4-yard touchdown pass. Jared Sciarrotta’s extra point made it an eight-point game with eight minutes remaining.

Amherst was able to move into Midview territory twice late in the game, but a lost fumble stalled its first drive before Redwood’s late heroics.

“That team is not going to quit,” Albright said of the Comets. “I hope they believe in (DiFranco) and stay believing in him because he’s a great kid and a great coach.”

DiFranco, whose Comets will host Clearview next week, is searching for answers.

“We’re competing, no doubt about that,” he said. “That’s all well and good, but it isn’t good enough. I’ve got to work a little harder, the staff has to work a little harder and the players have to do a little bit more. The 75 people in this locker room, if we do a little bit more and a little bit better we’re going to start winning these games.”

Callaway ended the game completing 18 of 35 passes for 204 yards and three touchdowns. Lamb put big numbers on the board as well, connecting on 16-of-32 for 223 yards and one touchdown.

DiFranco was impressed with Callaway.

“They have a really, really good quarterback — I’m not going to make any bones about it,” he said. “The kid is really good and he’s smart. We fought on the defensive line all night to get pressure, and we did, but every time I blitzed someone he found him. He was extremely good at finding who I was blitzing and picking us apart.

“But I’m proud of our defensive line. The front four played really bad last week, and we worked extremely hard with them this week to get better. If we can get that much better every week, we’re going to start winning games.”

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: The Midview and Amherst bands had a small battle in the second quarter. First the Midview side played a short version of Sir Mix-A-Lot’s classic “Jump on It.” When they were done the Amherst side blasted it back. The Midview band must have been impressed, because as the Comets wailed the song they danced in the aisles.

Contact Mike Perry at 329-7135 or ctsports@chroniclet.com.

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