Comets roughed up by Mediapolis

Norv and Mary Coblentz · Wednesday, October 16, 2013
The Comets football team fell, Oct. 4., to the undefeated Mediapolis Bulldogs at West Liberty, 33-13.

"With three games left in the season, most of our goals are still attainable," West Liberty Head Coach Ben Slife said, "We just need to get back to playing physical football."

First Half

The Comets didn't score in the first half; rather, they were assaulted by a strong Bulldog offense. Mediapolis kicked off to start the game, and it was three-and-out for West Liberty. Brett Becker punted the ball, and it was returned to midfield. Edgar Castillo made the stop for the Comets.

Carl Guardado made two nice stops for the Comets, then a long pass play resulted in a Bulldogs touchdown. The PAT kick was good, and Mepo led 7-0 with 8:59 left in the first quarter.

Later the Bulldogs intercepted a pass and ran it in for another touchdown. The PAT kick was good, and the Bulldogs had a 14-0 lead with 3:39 on the clock.

A fumble would put the ball in Mediapolis hands once again. It didn't take the Bulldogs long to make it the 33 yards into the end zone. Three runs put them on the five-yard line, and another run put them in the endzone. The PAT kick was no good, but the Bulldogs had a 20-0 lead with 1:26 left in the first quarter.

In the second quarter Mepo had another big run, stopped by Jepson, for a first down at the West Liberty 40. A complete pass gave the Bulldogs a first down on the 29, then a two-yard run was stopped by Sam Weaver. Kohl Wheeler got a tackle, then the Bulldogs got a first down at the 15.

A complete pass made it first and goal at the three, and the next play put the Bulldogs in the endzone. Mepo tried a two-point conversion play but failed. Still, they had a 26-0 lead with 3:43 left in the half.

Try as they might, West Liberty would go into halftime 26-0. Some big plays helped move the ball, but the Comets had trouble breaking free of the Bulldogs grip.

"We made a couple of adjustments in the second half that I think really helped us out,"Coach Slife said. "We were able to move the ball a little bit up and down the field. We'd just shoot ourselves in the foot here and there. Kind of the same old theme all season long.

"I was happy with the improvements, and the coaching staff put our heads together, and we were able to move the ball a little bit in the second half," he added. "The first half, that was misery."

Second Half

Anderson and Becker brought sufficient gains to West Liberty during its first drive of the half, but a fumble was recovered by Mediapolis.

The Bulldogs started their drive at their own 41. A long pass play, stopped by Wheeler, gave Mepo a first down at the West Liberty 20. Another carry and Schneider got a tackle for a loss. It was second down and 13. Another carry for short yardage and an incomplete pass brought up fourth down and 1 at the 11. The Bulldogs went for the fourth down conversion and ended up with another touchdown. The PAT kick was good, and the score was 33-0 with 5:34 left in the third quarter.

Anderson returned the Mediapolis kickoff 24 yards to the West LIberty 41. Guardado gained three yards on a run, then Becker scrambled for the first down at the Mepo 49. Becker ran for another first down at the 35, and the Bulldogs called a time out.

Guardado ran for two yards, then an incomplete pass made it third down and eight. Becker got another first down on a keeper, and Mepo was called for a personal foul. It was first and goal on the 10, and Heick ran for the Comets' first score of the game. Fierro's PAT kick was good, and with 3:23 to go in the quarter, the Comets were finally on the scoreboard 33-7.

The Comets amped up their defense for the rest of the half, not allowing the Bulldogs to bring in any more points. Unfortunately, they were also unable to bring in any points until late in the game.

However, with just 1:31 on the clock, the Comets were determined to score one more time. The first pass was incomplete, then Heick ran for a seven-yard gain. With less than a minute to go, Becker connected with Koenig for a first down at the Mepo 37. Becker ran for eight yards, then a pass to Guardado resulted in a touchdown with 19 seconds to go.

The Comets tried for a two-point conversion, but it did not work. The final score was 33-13.

"We knew that West Liberty had some issues with turnovers," Mediapolis Head Coach Brian Borrison said. "We talked about on defense getting a lot of guys to the football and being where we're supposed to be, then good things usually happen when we do that. I thought in the first half we did a fairly solid job of doing that. It's always good to score on defense, I don't think we'd done that yet this year."

"There's a reason they're (ranked) number five," Coach Slife said.
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