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Margaretta rallies to defeat Port Clinton

Keegan Lowe wraps up a Margaretta runner early in Friday nights game

For a while, it looked like the Port Clinton Redskins might be on the way to their first victory of the season.

Holding a 12-point lead midway thru the second quarter, Port Clinton was in the driver's seat before Margaretta scored the next 23 points to defeat the 'Skins, 30-19, on Friday.

Port Clinton got on the board first, taking a 7-0 lead on the second play from scrimmage when quarterback Brandon Moore raced 84 yards for a touchdown. Moore eluded several Margaretta defenders before racing down the sidelines for the score. 

The Polar Bears responded, scoring on the ensuing drive when running back Derek Abbot took a pitch and raced 52 yards for a touchdown on fourth down to tie it at 7.

The 'Skins' next touchdown was set up by a Cal Laurel interception of Margaretta quarterback Dylan Bailey that gave Port Clinton possession at the Polar Bear 39-yard-line.

Two plays later, running back Keegan Lowe scored on a 34-yard run to push the lead to 13-7 and, after the Redskin defense was able to force Margaretta to turn it over on downs at the Margaretta 44 on the ensuing possession, Lowe scored on a 12-yard run to push the lead to 19-7 before the Polar Bears mounted their comeback.

For Port Clinton head coach Beau Carmon, it was the missed opportunities that ultimately cost his team.

“We were in the red zone three times (after leading 19-7) and we were unable to score points from that point on,” he said. “Those are important opportunities. We haven't been able to finish a game offensively. We've been ahead at halftime of two games and we've only scored two touchdowns in the second half. 

“We can't rely on the defense to win football games. They're playing well and they're getting better. When the offense shuts down in the second half, that puts our defense in a tough situation. I don't think we're able, mentally and physically, to make a comeback right now.”

With the win, the Polar Bears improved to 3-2 overall and 1-1 in the Sandusky Bay Conference. Port Clinton, meanwhile, fell to 0-5 and 0-2 in the SBC.

Margaretta scored its second touchdown in the second quarter on a 10-yard run by Abbott that finished off an eight-play, 61-yard drive. The key play came when Bailey hit Stephen Freeh for 22 yards to move the ball to the Port Clinton 12.

Abbott later scored on a 19-yard-run in the third quarter that gave the Polar Bears the lead for good at 22-19. Quarterback Dylan Bailey later scored on a three-yard run to account for the last score.

Moore led the team with 275 all-purpose yards, 125 coming on the ground. He completed 9-of-19 passes for 150 yards and Lowe finished with 10 carries for 98 yards and two scores. Emerson Lowe caught two passes for 41 yards.

“Keegan Lowe had a good game,” Carmon said. “Brandon had a good game. Our offensive line was able to make some holes for our guys. We had over 250 yards of rushing and 400 yards of offense. 

The 'Skins got good news this week when sophomore receivers Nathan Stubblefield and Aidan Rospert were cleared for action after suffering injuries earlier in the season. 

“(Stubblefield) is a huge part of our offense,” Carmon said. “We can't be a one-dimensional offense, we need other guys to make plays, especially our offensive line. We're slowly turning the offense into what I want us to be, a multi-dimensional team. We've tried to put an emphasis on running the football. We're trying to stay balanced.” 

This Friday, Port Clinton host St. Mary CC, which is 1-4 and 0-2 in the SBC.

Carmon is impressed with what he's seen of the Panthers on film.

“Their skill kids can go with anyone in the league,” he said. “Their skill kids can compete with the best in the league. The quarterback does a real good job and they have some nice receivers. I think they're well coached. 

“To play with Clyde the way they did, nobody expected that. They were able to move the ball up and down the field and score touchdowns. They're a sound football team and they're able to do things, especially offensively.”

Margaretta vs. Port Clinton football

Promising Redskin freshman Emerson Lowe breaks loose for a long run against Margaretta Friday

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