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  • Dylan O’Loughlin

Medina rocks Albion

By: Dylan O'Loughlin

Medina, NY - The Albion Purple Eagles traveled to play the Medina Mustangs in the annual Battle for Doc’s Rock in the historic Route-31 Rivalry. The Mustangs prevailed with a dominant 38-8 win.

The Medina Mustangs celebrating after winning the Battle for Doc's Rock (Dylan O'Loughlin/89.1 The Point)

The Mustangs started off slow though, punting on their first possession. That did not matter though as on Albion’s first drive Mustangs No. 3 defensive back Justin Pitts intercepted Purple Eagles quarterback No. 2 Blake Preston.

That’s where the Mustangs started rolling, as a big run by No. 21 Brody Fry set them up in the red zone with the ball being punched in afterward by No. 2 running back Christian Moss for his first touchdown of the day. The PAT was converted by No. 9 kicker Cole Callard to make the score 7-0 midway through the first.

After that, the Medina defense continued to show out, causing a punt on Albion’s next drive. The following drive for the Mustangs, they fed the hot hand and gave it back to Moss who took it down the field to score his second touchdown of the night. Callard converted the PAT again to increase the lead to 14-0 with 11:08

remaining in the second quarter.

Running back #2 Christian Moss after scoring his second touchdown of the night (Dylan O'Loughlin/89.1 The Point)

The Mustangs weren’t done there as they forced another punt by the Purple Eagles. That gave the ball back to Moss and the Mustangs, who again broke off a big run to carry them to the red zone. The Mustangs then threw in a little trickery as quarterback No. 6 Julian Woodworth gave it to wide receiver No. 12 Noah Cudzilo on a jet sweep for the team's third touchdown of the night. Callard remained automatic, hitting his third PAT increasing the lead to 21 with 5:20 remaining in the second quarter.

As the half was coming to a close, the Purple Eagles were driving. That was until No. 4 defensive back Kaedon Cleveland intercepted Preston, giving Preston his second turnover of the night. That pick would set up the Mustangs for a half-closing 40-plus-yard field goal attempt by Callard which he drilled, making the lead 24-0 at halftime.

Mustangs' kicker #9 Cole Callard getting ready to kick the field goal that increased the lead to 24-0 (Dylan O'Loughlin/89.1 The Point)

The scoring slowed down in the second half as there were no points in the third, but both teams had their chances. After neither offense moved anywhere on their first drives of the half, the Purple Eagles were once more driving and made it all the way to the Mustangs 10-yard line. But, the Mustangs defense was too strong, forcing a turnover on downs in the red zone with their backs against the wall with 2:36 remaining in the 3rd.

The following drive saw the Mustangs offense find themselves in the same position. Woodworth carried the ball to the goal line, stretching out to break the plane, but fumbled causing a touchback and giving possession back to the Purple Eagles. On the ensuing play on defense, the Mustangs forced a fumble recovered by No. 77 Xavier King to give the ball back to the offense. With great field position, Medina went back to their bread and butter handing the ball off to Moss who not only got a big 4th down conversion on 4th and 1, but punched it in afterward for his third touchdown of the night with Callard remaining perfect making the lead 31-0 with 6:47 to go in the 4th.

The Purple Eagles were set on avoiding the shutout, though, putting together a great drive in the final minutes of the game capped off by a passing touchdown from Blake Preston to wide receiver No. 6 Kyle Radder. They completed that drive with a converted two-point conversion attempt as Preston threw it to wide receiver No. 4 Auston Johnson who muscled his way into the end zone making the score 31-8 with 1:54 remaining in the game.

Purple Eagles defensive line and Mustangs offensive line getting ready for the next play (Dylan O'Loughlin/89.1 The Point)

The Mustangs were not happy allowing that touchdown though, as their offense scored in less than a minute thanks to Noah Cudzilo. First taking a zone read about 60 yards down near the goal line. He finished the job on the play after when he took another read option into the end zone. The point after try was good giving the Mustangs a 30-point lead, moving the score to 38-8 with 1:06 remaining. Callard finished perfect on the night, going 5/5 on PATs and 1/1 on field goals. Albion got one more crack at it offensively but the drive didn't end how they would've liked as Cudzilo made his presence felt on defense following his touchdown, taking down the game-sealing interception, Preston's third of the night.

The Mustangs finish the season undefeated with an 8-0 record and the Purple Eagles fell to 2-6. Both teams need to put this game in the rearview looking ahead to next week's sectionals.

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