CLYDE — Galion finished the 2021 football season with a 4-7 record after falling to Clyde 56-7 in the first round of the OHSAA Division IV, Region 14 playoffs. The Fliers flew past the Tigers thanks to a huge first half, which saw them outscore Galion, 49-0.
“I want to give my seniors a shoutout. We were down to 10 tonight. They’ve been a part of what, our third year going to the playoffs,” Galion head coach Matt Dick said after the final game for his senior class.
Clyde (9-2) got out of the gates fast and didn’t slow down. The Fliers out-gained the Tigers 188-34 in total first half yardage and finished with an overall advantage of 289-166.
Clyde took advantage of the game’s first turnover, recovering a fumble inside the Galion 30 yard line. Running back Michael Daniels then punched the ball into the end zone from a yard out to give his team a 7-0 lead at the 8:10 mark of the first quarter.
Galion punted on their next drive and Clyde quickly drove to its second score of the period. Daniels scored another touchdown from one yard away to double the Fliers’ lead to 14-0 with 6:05 remaining in the opening quarter.
Daniels finished with 10 carries for 49 yards and the two touchdown runs, all of which came in the first half. He didn’t play in the second half as Clyde sent reserves in to finish out the game.
Clyde upped its lead to 21-0 when quarterback Jaden Cook hit receiver Griffin Noftz for a 35-yard touchdown just 47 seconds into the second quarter.
Cook finished his night 7-for-13 for 96 yards passing and had five carries. He didn’t play in the second half, either.
Brady Wilson scored two touchdowns in a row for the Fliers, the first coming on a 17-yard toss from Cook with 7:02 left before halftime. Wilson then intercepted a pass from Galion quarterback Braxton Prosser and returned it for 82 yards to make it a 35-0 game with 4:54 remaining in the second period.
“When the ball is tipped in the air, all of their kids are like sharks on a body,” said Dick.
Clyde wasn’t done in the first half. Fliers linebacker Dillon Overmyer intercepted a Prosser pass and a few plays later he carried the ball into the end zone on a fourth down play from four yards out to extend the Clyde lead to 42-0 with 1:57 left in the first half.
“We got into fourth down three or four times and couldn’t get off the field,” Dick explained.
Prosser finished the game going 4-of-13 for 19 yards and had four turnovers in his first career start.
“He’s a freshman,” Dick said. “For him to be able to do some of the things he do is pretty amazing. His potential (especially) running the ball — I’m excited to see what him and Cooper Kent can do next year.”
Abe Morrison scored the final touchdown of the first half for Clyde to extend the Fliers lead to 49-0. Morrison intercepted a pass and returned it 25 yards for a touchdown with 1:29 to play.
“I think it’s so hard, especially when you’re a senior, and it’s like 45-0 at half. I can’t make it hurt less,” Dick said. “But, what we can do is go out and win the second half. We tied the second half and our kids battled for that.”
Galion found some success on their first possession of the second half. Sam Wegesin scored from four yards out with 3:44 left in the third quarter after Gabe Ivy did some tough running to get the Tigers into scoring position.
Ivy carried the ball 15 times and had 112 yards rushing. Galion rushed for 147 yards as a team.
Clyde answered with a score of its own on the following drive. Running back Clark Norman burst through the middle and went untouched for a 29-yard touchdown with 42 seconds left in the third quarter.
Norman ran the ball 10 times for 52 yards.
“We’re going to miss some of our seniors and expect some big things from our underclassmen next year,” Dick said.
Clyde will meet Shelby in the second round of the Region 14 playoffs next Friday. The Whippets (9-2) defeated Clear Fork 28-7 in the opening round of the playoffs.
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