Tigers maul Gallia Academy, 49-0

By Bryan Walters - bwalters@civitasmedia.com

IRONTON, Ohio — Streaks continued.

The Gallia Academy football team dropped its 11th straight decision as host Ironton clinched its second consecutive Ohio Valley Conference championship on Friday night following a 49-0 Week 9 victory at Tanks Memorial Stadium in Lawrence County.

The visiting Blue Devils (0-9, 0-6 OVC) suffered their seventh straight loss to the Fighting Tigers (6-3, 6-0), who remained unbeaten in league play (13-0) since joining the OVC last fall.

Ironton used a pair of its traditional allies — a solid running attack and a stingy defense — to make quick work of things as the hosts scored two defensive touchdowns en route to a 42-0 halftime advantage.

John Higgins started the scoring with blocked punt recovery in the end zone with 10:31 remaining in the opening period, giving IHS a 7-0 advantage.

Garrett Carrico followed with the first of three touchdown runs on the night as he plunged in from four yards out with 5:30 remaining, allowing IHS to secure a 14-0 edge. Carrico also added TD runs of 21 yards and 56 yards early and late in the second canto.

Jake Isaac increased the Fighting Tiger cushion to 21-0 with 35 seconds left in the opening period after barreling in from a yard out.

Jourdyn Barrow scored in between the second quarter Carrico runs after picking off a pass and returning it 49 yards to paydirt, giving Ironton a 35-0 lead with 7:54 remaining in the half. Carrico’s last TD run came with 4:19 left as the hosts took a 42-0 advantage into the break.

Ironton held a 209-94 advantage in total yards at the intermission, with the Blue Devils producing all 62 of its passing yards in the first half.

Thanks to a running second half clock, both teams went scoreless in the third — but the hosts tacked on a final score with 1:23 left in regulation as Higgins rumbled in from 19 yards out for a 49-0 final.

Ironton outgained the Blue and White by a sizable 322-146 margin in total yards of offense, with all of the hosts’ yards coming on the ground through 34 carries. GAHS, conversely, had only 84 rushing yards on 28 attempts.

The Fighting Tigers claimed a 15-10 advantage in first downs, finished plus-3 in turnover differential and were also penalized four times for 30 yards. Gallia Academy was flagged only once for 11 yards.

Clay Plymale led Gallia Academy with 28 rushing yards on seven carries, followed by Justin McClelland with 20 yards on 11 attempts and Boo Pullins added 13 yards on six totes.

McClelland finished the night 11-of-21 passing for 62 yards, throwing two interceptions. Colton Campbell led the GAHS wideouts with five catches for 25 yards, while Cody Call hauled in three passes for 25 yards.

Tanner Allen led the Blue Devils with eight tackles, followed by John Stout and Brody Thomas with four stops apiece.

Carrico paced IHS with 138 rushing yards on nine carries. Jake Isaac also threw an incompletion on Ironton’s only pass attempt of the night.

Gallia Academy will complete OVC play and its 2016 schedule on Friday night when the winless Blue Devils host winless South Point on Senior Night at Memorial Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.

By Bryan Walters