Springfield’s seniors posed for one last photo together in the west end zone at Evans Stadium after a 64-28 victory Friday against Beavercreek.
“This is the greatest experience ever,” senior quarterback Leonard Taylor. “Thanks to the fans, coaches, everybody having our back and coming out and supporting us.”
»RELATED: Week 8 Scoreboard
»RELATED: Northmont stuns Centerville
The biggest victory of the season so far for the Wildcats came in the final home game for a group that has helped ressurect Springfield football. The 2017 seniors were freshmen in 2014 when Maurice Douglass left Trotwood-Madison for Springfield.
“They’re really special,” Douglass said. “They’re the kids who came in with me. I take a little bit more pride in them, having them guys together for four years. It means a little bit more. We’ve been through a whole lot together.”
Springfield finished 2-8 in 2014 and then 3-7 in 2015. Last season, the Wildcats made the playoffs for the first time since 2010, finishing 7-4.
The victory over the Beavers, who began the week in ninth place in the Division I, Region 3 playoff rankings, one spot behind the Wildcats, gives Springfield a 6-2 mark with two road games ahead against Wayne and Fairmont.
Springfield’s only two losses came at home to Centerville and Northmont, so Douglass was happy to see the seniors win their final home game.
“We play good on the road,” he said. “We like to play on the road. I think it allows us to focus even more away from our building. It was good for our seniros to go out with a bang.”
The Wildcats set a school record for most points scored since Springfield’s North and South high schools combined in 2008. The previous record was set in 2010 in a 61-7 victory over Miamisburg.
Beavercreek (5-3) lost its third straight game and its second straight to Springfield after winning five straight in the series. Turnovers doomed the Beavers in the first half. They fumbled three times and threw an interception.
Springfield converted each of the turnovers into scores and led 24-0 at halftime.
“(Turnovers) were an issue last year, and they haven’t been an issue at all (this year),” Beavercreek coach Nic Black said. “The two things I talked about before we came over here was this game has been such a big special teams and turnover game every time we play them. I said we need to win in both of those phases, and we lost epically in both of those phases.”
Springfield opened the scoring with a 37-yard field goal by Braeden Carey. It was his second field goal of the season and his longest.
Beavercreek lost a fumble on the last play of the first quarter, and on the first play of the second quarter, Taylor threw a 33-yard touchdown pass to Michael Brown-Stephens. It was Taylor’s 11th touchdown pass of the season and the third touchdown catch for Brown-Stephens.
Beavercreek fumbled again on its next drive. Taylor capitalized with a 1-yard touchdown run.
Springfield’s Quincy Scott ended Beavercreek’s next drive with an interception. Taylor followed with another 1-yard touchdown run. The first-half touchdown runs were the seventh and eighth of the season for Taylor.
Beavercreek got right back in the game in the second half. Adam Graeter caught a 7-yard touchdown pass, and then after an interception by Cameron Etienne, the Beavers cut Springfield’s lead to 24-14 on a 16-yard touchdown run by Kaden Wenger.
“We came out and started (the second half) exactly as we had to,” Black said. “The problem was after that we didn’t make any plays.”
Springfield took the momentum right back, sealing the victory with touchdowns by Todd King and Brown-Stephens. King added two more touchdowns as the Wildcats pulled away.
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.