MERCERVILLE, Ohio — The South Gallia Rebels competed to the best of their abilities, but lost a 30-20 heartbreaker to visiting Belpre Friday night in a critical Week 6 Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division contest at Rebel Stadium.
South Gallia (2-4, 1-3 TVC Hocking) had the opening position in the first quarter, but David Kuhn fumbled the ball at the Rebels own 36-yard line and Belpre recovered the unfortunate fumble.
The Golden Eagles (3-3, 3-2) wasted no time off the clock as Tojzae Reams rushed for a 31-yard touchdown at the 10:25 mark. An unsuccessful PAT by Brandon Simonette gave the Golden Eagles a 6-0 lead.
With 7:55 remaining in the first quarter, Johnny Sheets of South Gallia rushed for a five-yard touchdown run and a two-point conversion run by Sheets gave the Rebels an 8-6 first quarter advantage.
At the 2:55 mark of the second quarter, Sheets had another rushing touchdown — this time for 11 yards as South Gallia extended its lead out to 14-6.
The ensuing kickoff went to Belpre’s Deijon Bedgood on the Golden Eagles’ own 21-yard line, and the senior returned the kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown. A successful two-point conversion run by Ryan Simonette tied the game at 14-all entering halftime.
At the 9:31 mark into the third quarter, Isaac Tullius capped off a 20-yard touchdown run and a successful two-point conversion run by Tullius allowed Belpre to regain the lead at 22-14.
With 6:41 remaining in the third quarter, Sheets rushed for a 38-yard touchdown. A failed two-point conversion allowed BHS to maintain a 22-20 edge headed into the fourth quarter.
As the fourth canto started ticking down, the Rebels marched the ball down the field and approached Belpre’s 10-yard line. The Red and Gold lost the ball on downs and Belpre seized the moment, driving the ball down to the opposite field with ease.
With 8:14 remaining in the game, Belpre’s Isaac Tullius capped off a 14-yard touchdown run and a successful two-point conversion pass from Brandon Simonette to Jesse Collins gave the Black and Orange a 30-20 cushion.
Johnny Sheets of South Gallia — who surpassed the 1,000 rushing yard mark in the contest with 325 yards — pushed his season mark to 1,202 rushing yards through six weeks.
Colten Coughenour led SGHS in passing after completing 1-of-3 passes for 13 yards. Coughenour also had four carries for 25 yards.
Johnny Sheets led the Rebels in rushing with 37 carries for 325 yards and three touchdowns, followed by Jeffery Sheets with 14 touches for 85 yards. Davis Kuhn had three carries for 16 yards.
Johnny Sheets led the Red and Gold in receiving with one reception for 13 yards. The Rebels had 21 first downs, four penalties for 65 yards and committed three fumbles in the setback.
Issac Tullius led BHS in passing with a 1-for-2 effort for 47 yards.Tullius also led the Black and Orange in rushing with 14 carries for 64 yards.
Tojzae Reams had eight carries for 86 yards and one touchdown, while Ryan Simonette had five touches for eight yards. Deijon Bedgood had three carries for 23 yards.
Deijon Bedgood led the Golden Eagles in receiving with one reception for 47 yards. Belpre had 11 first downs and seven penalties for 66 yards.
South Gallia returns to action on Friday when it hosts the Waterford Wildcats on Homecoming Night at Rebel Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
J.P. Davis is a sports correspondent for Ohio Valley Publishing.