Riverside Beat Ansonia in Season Opener

ANSONIA – Ansonia held a 14-13 lead at halftime and failed to score in the 2nd half.  Clinging to just a one-point lead the Pirates erupted for 16 – 4th quarter points to hand the Tigers a loss in their season opening game.

The Tigers got off to a good start in the game holding Riverside on their first and second drives.

Ansonia finally got a rhythm going on offense with 6’2 – 200lb senior Peyton Beam carrying the football. Behind the offensive line of the Tigers, Beam and company was able to move the ball into Riverside territory. 

The drive looked like it was about to stall while facing 4th down and 10 yards to go … but the Tigers took to the air with 6’1 junior quarterback Ian Schmitmeyer throwing a pass to 6’2 sophomore Garrett Stammen.  He made an acrobatic catch stretching out and pulling it in with his fingertips, then broke several tackles to put the Tigers in good scoring position.

Moments later Beam scored a touchdown on a one-yard plunge behind the right guard and tackle.  Senior Connor Schmit kicked the extra point to give Ansonia a 7-0 lead at in the first quarter.

Riverside would put together their own drive scoring on a one yard run just seconds into the 2nd quarter but missed the extra point to trail 7-6.

The Pirates then scored again to go 13-6 and was on the move again inside Ansonia territory, but they would hold and took over with just under two-minutes to play in the half.

Ansonia went back to the air and completed a couple of passes before throwing a middle screen with Schmitmeyer to Beam and the rest was all Beam.  He would make a couple defenders miss and then bounced it to the outside for a 47-yard touchdown to give Ansonia a 14-13 lead at the half.

Ansonia couldn’t find the endzone the rest of the game but defensively held strong in the 3rd quarter.

The final stanza wasn’t kind to Ansonia still as Riverside from the newly formed Three Rivers Conference tacked on 16 unanswered points to take the non-conference win 29-14.

“We played a very good team tonight and had the lead going into the 4th quarter,” Ansonia football coach Matt Macy said.

“We just couldn’t make enough plays to keep drives alive and made several mental errors which is common with a young team like ours … but we’ll get to work this week to correct them,” Macy concluded.

Ansonia will travel to Bradford next Friday to take on the Railroaders in the first ever Western Ohio Athletic Conference football game.

Scoring:           1          2          3          4          F

Riverside         0          13        0          16        29

Ansonia           7          7          0          0          14

Dale Barger / Sports Editor

Dale Barger is a lifelong sports enthusiast and has covered high school athletics for nearly 20 years in Southwest Ohio and now becomes sports editor for Darke County now. For 18 years Dale has been a sportswriter for The Daily Advocate and has been published in online sorts magazines and conference websites. Dale is also an accomplished photographer who has captured thousands of athletes in action over the years. Dale is a member of The Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association and was a 2019 recipient of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Southwest District Media Service Award. Dale lives on a 72-acre farm outside of New Madison, Ohio and is married to Rita Ann (Fourman) Barger and together they have two sons and three grandkids. If you don’t see Dale at a sporting event you might catch him following his other passion – photographing nature and wildlife. Contact Darke County Now Editor Media Sports Editor Dale Barger at dbarger@darkecountynow.com.

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