SIDNEY — The Piqua football team used a familiar “staple” to give the Battered Helmet a round-trip ticket home Friday night in the annual rivalry game with Sidney.
Despite kicking off, the Indians scored in the first seven seconds and never trailed in a 42-7 win over the Yellow Jackets at 30 & 0 Field.
Piqua improved to 4-0 overall and 3-0 in the MVL, while Sidney dropped to 2-3 overall and 2-2 in the MVL.
“That’s something that is what we have done if you look back through the years,” Piqua football coach Bill Nees said. “We live on big plays and defense. There will be other games where we control the ball more, but tonight we did those two things.”
On the first play of the game, Piqua linebacker Bryson Roberts stepped in front of a Sidney pass at the Yellow Jacket 20-yard line and ran untouched into the end zone to give Piqua the lead with 11:53 remaining in the first quarter.
Jackson Trombley’s PAT kick made it 7-0.
“That was a big play,” Nees said. “Bryson (Roberts) had himself a night.”
After both teams had drives stall, Sidney appeared to be on the verge of tying the game before two big plays by Piqua defensive end Landon Hare.
First, Hare tackled Martez Harris for a five-yard loss on first down from the Piqua 16-yard line.
Then, on fourth-and-one from the seven yard line, Hare hit quarter Donavin Johnson just as he was releasing the ball.
Johnson couldn’t get anything on the pass, which landed near the line of scrimmage and Piqua took over on downs.
Early in the second quarter, it was the offense’s turn for big play.
Quarterback Brady Ouhl fired a perfect pass down the sideline to Ryan Brown and it turned into a 62-yard touchdown pass. Trombley’s kick made it 14-0 with 10:16 remaining in the half.
“That play had worked against our defense in practice this week, so we figured we would try it in a game,” Nees said.
Piqua put together a 52-yard drive late in the first half to make it 21-0 at the break.
After a penalty to start the drive, Cory Miller caught a 14-yard pass to get Piqua out of a hole.
On first down at the Sidney 29, Giovanni Barron caught an Ouhl pass and took it 28 yards down to the one-yard line.
Ouhl found the end zone two plays later and Trombley added the PAT kick with 29 seconds to go in the half.
Piqua took control immediately in the second half.
While the Indians rushing attack had struggled in the first half, Piqua got untracked on the ground in the second half.
“Sidney is a good football team,” Nees said. “I know the score might not show it, but they are a good team and that is a tough base defense to run inside against. But, our offensive coaches made a couple adjustments at halftime. They did a great job with that.”
Piqua took the second half kickoff and went 80 yards.
Jasiah Medley had a 42-yard run on the drive and Ouhl found Colton Beougher from four yards out for the first og Beougher’s two touchdowns.
Bryson Roberts then nearly had a second pick-six, returning an interception to the Sidney eight-yard line.
Three plays later, Ouhl found Beougher for another four-yard TD pass and Trombley added the PAT kick.
After E.J.. Davis ran four yards to cap an 86-yard drive for Sidney, with Carson Taylor kicking the PAT — Piqua reverted to the big play for the final score.
Medley ran 65 yards for a touchdown and Trombley added the PAT kick.
After a slow start, Medley finished with a 166 yards on 19 carries.
Ouhl completed 11 of 15 passes for 192 yards and three touchdowns.
Miller had a big night receiving for the Indians.
Sam Schmiesing led the defense with eight tackles and Hare had seven.
The only receiver to catch more than one pass, he made seven catches for 94 yards.
Johnson was 10 of 24 passing for the Jackets for 94 yards and had 72 yards rushing on 18 carries.
Jaden Swiger had 11 tackles, Chris Hudgins had 10 and Devin Tabor was credited with seven.
The Indians look to continue their success Friday, when winless Fairborn visits Alexander Stadium/Purk Field.
“We are heading into week six now,” Nees said. “You want to have good practices, but you also need to make sure you stay healthy.”
After punching a return trip ticket for the Battered Helmet for the ride home on the Piqua bus.