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Warriors soar over the Golden Eagles

Warren grounds Belpre with 35-7 defeat

Warren High School’s Kurt Taylor (7) rolls to his right as Belpre High School’s Nick Godfrey (33) tries to chase him down during Friday’s high school football game at Ralph Holder Stadium. (Photo by Tyler Bennett)

BELPRE –The Warren Warriors dashed hopes of a homecoming victory for the Belpre Golden Eagles, as they claimed a 35-7 victory on Friday night.

A meeting which was a two-score affair at halftime, the Warriors spread the ball around en route to 19 more points in the third quarter.

Early on in this one, running back Brayden Gerber found the end zone on a 9-yard scamper to give his team a 7-0 lead. Luckily for WHS, he scored the same way late in the third to put the game on ice. Speaking of being on ice, conditions at Ralph Holder Stadium became increasingly chilly throughout the night. However, quarterback Kurt Taylor was red-hot when looking for his targets.

Wide receiver Evan Gandee was the recipient of the first of two Taylor touchdown passes, as he burned through the Belpre secondary to dart his way to the end zone on a 33-yard pass. On the night, Gandee had three catches for 73 yards. Brett Gandee had a similar statline to his brother, as Taylor also found him three times for 63 yards.

Not to be left out was Brandon Simoniette, who corralled a jump-ball in the back of the end zone over two Golden Eagle defenders for six. Warren head coach Matt Kimes was pleased with his skill players, as the beat goes on for the 6-2 Warriors with a date at Alexander on tap for 7 p.m. next Friday.

Warren High School’s Evan Gandee, right, carries the ball during a high school football game against Belpre High School Friday night at Ralph Holder Stadium. (Photo by Tyler Bennett)

“I just told the guys I was proud of them. It was a great effort by our guys,” Kimes said after his team met in a huddle. “(Kurt Taylor) is such a special kid. He can make all the throws. When he manages the game like he did tonight, we’re pretty hard to stop, offensively. We’ve got a lot of weapons out there, so they can’t just key on one guy. We were able to spread the ball around and get the ball in many guys’ hands.”

The Belpre offense had a hard time getting started in the frigid conditions, as they were held to 50 yards of total offense in the first half. Injuries to skill players and a stout Warrior defense forced the Birds into a hole, as quarterback Connor Baker threw only seven passes for one yard. That meant the ground game had to get moving, and Baker formed a tandem with running back Nick Godfrey to finally find paydirt late in the contest.

After Logan Adams was shaken up in the third on a kick return, it was up to Godfrey to carry the load. He ran the ball 16 times for 121 yards and a score with 40 seconds remaining to put the Golden Eagles on the scoreboard. Belpre head coach Mike DeVol liked what he saw from Godfrey in the second half, but his 5-3 Belpre team has work to do as they prepare for a tough matchup at Eastern under the lights next Friday.

“Like I say, as long if you don’t quit, you don’t lose,” DeVol said of the team’s fight in the fourth quarter. “We’ve got two teams (Eastern and Waterford) that are going to be 6-2 over the next two weeks, so we have to be ready to go. Nick’s a great kid, and a great leader, and we have to go out there and get it done.”

Contact Josh Hughes at jhughes@newsandsentinel.com

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