ZANESVILLE-It was an inauspicious start for Zanesville.
The Blue Devils threw an interception and punted on their first two possessions Friday night.
Then, the offense found a rhythm, scoring on its final six drives of the first half en route to a 39-6 win over Marietta in an East Central Ohio League contest at John D. Sulsberger Memorial Stadium.
Zanesville finished 4-1 in the ECOL and 9-1 overall as the Blue Devils will host a first round game next Friday.
"It's the third time in six years that we finished 9-1," ZHS coach Chad Grandstaff said. "We get to play in Week 11 again. Hopefully, we can get win No. 10 next week and go from there."
Thomas Wibbeler, who finished 17 of 21 for 269 yards and four touchdowns, overcame his early struggles on Zanesville's third series. The junior completed 6-of-8 passes on the drive, including a 6-yard scoring strike to Matty Lynn to cap the 13-play drive that covered 66 yards. The extra point was blocked, but the Blue Devils were up 6-0 with 3:17 left in the first quarter.
J.T. McFarland set up the next score when he intercepted Marietta's Anthony Kimbrough and returned the ball to the Tigers' 1-yardline. Two plays later, McFarland jumped over the pile for a 1-yard touchdown run.
A bad snap on the extra point kept the lead 12-0 with 1:34 remaining in the first.
Zanesville scored 27 points in the second quarter. The Blue Devils forced the Tigers (0-5, 1-9) to punt on the ensuing drive to get the ball at their 41. Wibbeler needed just four plays to get Zanesville in the end zone when he found Lynn, who fought his way out of a pile, for a 35-yard touchdown. Cody Dent added the extra point for a 19-0 cushion with 10:12 left in the second quarter.
After another Tigers' punt, Zanesville had to cover just 35 yards on five plays, thanks to a personal foul call on the punt return. Dar Stanford hauled in a 12-yard touchdown pass to stretch the lead to 25-0.
Jamal Gladden capped the Blue Devils' next drive with a 9-yard touchdown run, and McFarland caught a 45-yard pass from Wibbeler for the final score of the first half as Will Weir and Dent each added extra points to make it 39-0 at the break.
Marietta finished with 173 yards as most came against the Blue Devils' reserve squad.
McFarland led Zanesville receivers with four catches for 76 yards, while Lynn had four catches for 62 yards, Stanford three receptions for 51 yards, and Brady Armstrong and Granger Long each had three catches for 40 yards.
Kimbrough was 1 of 11 in the first half, but finished 8 of 26 for 91 yard, including a 32-yard touchdown pass to Chance Wright in the fourth quarter. Wright caught three passes for 49 yard, and Quinton Coffield ran the ball 11 times for 42 yards.