The Ripley Vikings (4-6) outscored the Ravenswood Red Devils (5-5), 21-3, in the second half at Death Valley Memorial Stadium Friday night to win the coveted Hatchet for the fourth-straight time, 43-15.
RIPLEY - The Ripley Vikings (4-6) outscored the Ravenswood Red Devils (5-5), 21-3, in the second half at Death Valley Memorial Stadium Friday night to win the coveted Hatchet for the fourth-straight time, 43-15.
Ravenswood closed to within 22-12 at the half, but the eventual loss eliminated the Red Devils from a Class A playoff berth. The Red Devils finished with a #17 rating in Class A—one spot short of a playoff berth (Top 16 qualify). Ripley finuished at #19 in the Class AAA ratings.
J.T. Kemp scored a pair of touchdowns—the first on a two-yard run to cap an 11-play, 80-yard drive with 7:34 left in the opening quarter of the 63rd installment of the historic Jackson County Hatchet rivalry series.
Ripley upped their advantage to 14-0 with 33 seconds left in the opening quarter on a 10-yard Evan King sweep and Casto’s following PAT boot to cap a 15-play, 53-yard drive.
Ravenswood finally answered in big-play fashion with 9:01 left in the second quarter. Senior Ethan Mahan ripped out of an uncalled defensive hold to haul in a pass from junior quarterback Max Hilton. Mahan then carried two Viking defenders on his back into the end zone for a touchdown. Ryan Cunningham’s PAT kick was wide right, and Ripley led 14-6.
Ripley scored again less than six minutes later, when Kemp dove into the end zone from one-yard out to cap a 13-play, 66-yard drive. Senior Rocky Ford ran for the two-point conversion and the Vikings led 22-6 with 3:38 left in the half.
Ravenswood answered as the final seconds of the first half wound down with another big play. Senior linebacker Jake Greene picked off a Brayden Campbell pass and raced 48 yards for a touchdown with 5 seconds left in the second quarter. Hilton’s pass for two points to Zach Flowers fell incomplete and Ripley took a 22-12 lead to the locker room at the break.
Senior quarterback Brayden Campbell got Ripley’s next TD on a 12-yard run to cap a 12-play, 75-yard drive with 6:08 left in the third quarter. Casto booted the PAT and Ripley led 29-12.
Ravenswood answered when senior Ryan Campbell booted a 36-yard field goal to cap a 10-play, 64-yard march with 17.9 seconds left in the third quarter to make it 29-15.
The Red Devils then gift-wrapped a TD for the Vikings with two 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalties at the end of the same play to set Ripley up inside the Ravenswood 10. Ford got the TD on a three-yard run to cap the penalty-aided six-play, 50-yard drive. Casto booted the PAT and the Vikings had full control at 36-15 with 9:35 left in the fourth quarter.
Ripley scored again with 3:52 left in the game on a 15-yard jet sweep by senior Ty Eshenaur to cap a seven-play, 69-yard march. Casto booted the PAT to made the final score 43-15.
On the night, J.T. Kemp carried 25 times for 126 yards with two TDs to lead the Vikings. R.J. Evans carried 15 times for 85 yards and a TD; Ty Eshenaur, six carries for 61 yards and a TD; Brayden Campbell, seven carries for 47 yards and a TD; Evan King, three carries for 37 yards and a TD; Justin Wheeler, two carries for 9 yards; and Noah Kelly, two carries for 3 yards. As a team, Ripley totaled 60 carries for 368 rushing yards and six TDs.
Campbell completed five of 10 passes for 65 yards with one interception (TD). Noah Westfall had one catch for 30 yards; Eshenaur, one for 4 yards; Cyrus Casto, two for 22 yards’ and Evans, one for 10 yards.
Ripley totaled 433 offensive yards with 22 first downs (17 via rush, 4 via pass and 1 via penalty) and drew 8 flags for 65 penalty yards.
Jake Green led the Red Devils with 15 carries for 55 yards. Evan Dunlap added 11 carries for 29 yards; Zach Flowers, four carries for 9 yards; Chase Hood, two carries for 3 yards; and Max Hilton, three carries for minus two yards. Junior Luke Jackson did not play offense Friday night due to a hip flexor
not play offense Friday night due to a hip flexor injury.
As a team, Ravenswood carried 35 times for 94 rushing yards.
Hilton completed four of 11 passes for 49 yards with a TD. Ethan Mahan had one catch for 38 yards (TD); and Greene three catches for 11 yards.
Ravenswood totaled 143 offensive yards with seven first downs (4 via rush, 2 via pass and 1 via penalty) and drew six flags for 65 penalty yards.
Ryan Cunningham punted five times with a 32.5-yard average and kicked off four times with a 38.75-yard average.
Sam Sturm had one kickoff return for 22 yards; Devin Casto, one for 12 yards; Austin Garrett, Ryan Bailey and Wayne Stephenson, one each for three yards each; and Chase Hood, two for no gain.
On defense, Luke Jackson led the Red Devils with 12 tackles. Ethan Mahan added 10 tackles (TFL); Ryan Bailey, six; Jake Greene (interception for TD), Kenley Hickman and Logan Coleman, four each; Elijah Benson (3 TFL) and Sam Sturm, three each; Evan Dunlap, two; and Max Hilton, Chase Hood, Ryan Cunningham, Wayne Stephenson, Zach Flowers, and Ryan Blackburn, one each.
(RP) J.T. Kemp, 2-yard run (Jacob Casto kick); 7:34 first quarter.
(RP) Evan King, 10-yard run (Casto kick); 0:33 first quarter.
(RV) Ethan Mahan, 38-yard pass from Max Hilton (kick failed); 9:01 second quarter.
(RP) Kemp, 1-yard run (R.J. Evans run); 3:38 second quarter.
(RV) Jake Greene, 48-yard interception return (pass failed); 0:05 second quarter.
(RP) Brayden Campbell, 12-yard run (Casto kick); 6:08 third quarter.
(RV) Ryan Cunningham, 36-yard field goal; 0:17.9 third quarter.
(RP) Evans, 3-yard run (Casto kick); 9:35 fourth quarter.
(RP) Ty Eshenaur, 15-yard run (Casto kick); 3:52 fourth quarter.