BROOKLYN — Back during the long, hot afternoons of two-a-days the Clearview Clippers stated three goals heading into the season.
Repeat as Patriot Athletic Conference Stripes Division champions, return to the Division IV playoffs and have a better result in the postseason then they had a year ago.
Friday night at the Brooklyn Athletic Complex the Clippers moved two of those goals into the “Mission Accomplished” pile and put themselves in a much better position to achieve the third goal with a 40-12 win over the Hurricanes in their final game as PAC rivals.
Clippers senior running back Drew Engle, who came into the game needing 67 yards for a 1,000-yard season, had 96 yards on the ground and three touchdowns, all in the first half as Clearview (9-1, 5-0 PAC) built a 40-0 halftime lead.
“We like to run the ball. We may come up with different offensive schemes against different teams but we know it’s important to establish the running game,” said Engle, who had touchdown runs of 5, 22 and 3 yards. “Just like last year, we took a hard loss Week 1 (against Amherst) then we bounced back and did what we had to do. It feels great right now being PAC champs and heading back to the playoffs. A lot of blood, sweat and tears went into it and I’m proud of my team.”
When the Clippers had their starters in the game their defense proved to be an impenetrable force for the Hurricanes (3-7, 0-5), who were held to just 14 yards of offense over the first 24 minutes.
Although the official playoff parings won’t be announced until Sunday, joeeitel.com is reporting the Clippers will host Sparta Highland, winners of the Knox Morrow Athletic Conference, next Saturday at Tom Hoch Field. It would be the Clippers first home playoff game since 2008.
“Another home game is something we’d love to have,” Clearview coach Mike Collier said. “We’d love the chance to step foot on Tom Hoch Field one more time. It’s a special place for all of us, especially the seniors.”
Senior running back David Renftle had touchdown runs of 6 and 9 yards and Joseph Norris had a 40-yard interception return for a score as the Clippers reached the 40-point mark for the fifth time this season.
“We knew this might not be the most difficult game on our schedule but we prepared for them like we would for any other opponent,” Renftle said. “We played our hardest ball until the second half when we were able to put the JV in. That’s the story. We’ve been grinding all summer and grinding all season. Now we get to play a playoff game. Now we’ve got to work hard all week in practice, stay focused and keep grinding. We want to be as focused as we were when we played Columbia.”
Brooklyn was able to have success moving the ball in the fourth quarter, scoring touchdowns on a 4-yard run by Alex Hernandez and a 36-yard run by Tavion Jackson, both freshmen.
In the 14 years the teams played in the PAC, the Hurricanes never defeated Clearview. Next season Brooklyn moves to the Chagrin Valley Conference while the Clippers will play in the new Lorain County League.
“I was glad our guys came out focused and ready to play and we could jump out to a big lead,” Collier said. “The running game has been one of the strengths of the team all season and we showed that tonight. The guys up front have been a big part of that and the guys in the backfield also do a great job of blocking for each other.”
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Clearview 40, Brooklyn 12
Clearview 14 26 0 0 — 40
Brooklyn 0 0 0 12 — 12
C — David Renftle, 6 run (Brandon Moore kick)
C — Drew Engle, 5 run (Javier Coll kick)
C — Engle, 22 run (kick fail)
C — Engle, 3 run (Coll kick)
C — Joseph Norris, 40 interception return (Coll kick)
C — Renftle, 9 run (kick fail)
B — Alex Hernandez, 4 run (kick fail)
B — Tavion Jackson, 36 run (kick blocked)
First downs 10 8
— by rushing 8 6
— by passing 2 0
— by penalty 0 2
Yards rushing 180 120
Yards passing 46 3
Total offense 226 123
Passes att./comp. 4/2 15/2
Intercepted by 2 0
Fumbles/lost 4/3 2/1
Penalties/yards 7/80 6/46
RUSHING — (C) Drew Engle 9-96, David Renftle 5-79, Lamont Thomas 4-23, Caden Justice 1-7, Miguel Negron 1-2, Kirk Mitchell 5-0, Anthony Lara 1-(-1), Chase Christensen 1-(-9), Josiah Moon 1-(-17). (B) Tavion Jackson 7-88, Alex Hernandez 5-28, Brandon Jakubecz 12-9, Ar’ean Cowling 1-(-2), Devin Wullschleger 2-(-3).
PASSING — (C) Christensen 2-4-46-0-0. (B) Jakubecz 1-10-(-7)-0-2, Jackson 1-3-10-0-0, Joe Boreako 0-2-0-0-0.
RECEIVING — (C) Renftle 1-26, Dustyn Smith 1-15, Joseph Norris 1-5. (B) Hunter Smith 1-10, Jordon Eberhardt 1-(-7).