NEW MADISON – Tri-Village kicked off its first varsity football season hosting the Jefferson Broncos.
A dramatic entry onto the field by a skydiver landing on the 50-yard line was followed up with a second diver streaming the American flag. But the excitement was short lived for the many fans who showed up to experience their first Friday night under the lights in New Madison as it gave way to thunder and lightning, putting the game on delay until Saturday morning.
Jefferson returned Saturday morning minus two players from the night before and suited up just 11 players.
Tri-Village controlled the line of scrimmage and made big plays throughout the game, one the Patriots would win by the score of 54-6 to record their first win as a varsity football program.
The Patriots got on the board first on a 1-yard plunge from senior quarterback Jonny Wilson at 7:41 in the first quarter. The big play of the drive was a 35-yard run by Jared Buckley to get the Patriots in scoring position. He also would run in the two-point conversion to give T-V an 8-0 lead.
On the ensuing kick-off Trace Couch kicked a low liner off the chest of one of the forward receiving Jefferson players, and it was recovered by Thadd Carden.
It didn’t take long for the Patriots to capitalize as Wilson threw a 25-yarder to Gavin Richards for the score and T-V went up 14-0.
Jefferson on its very first play hiked the ball over the head of its quarterback and into the end zone that led to a safety as Tri-Village went up 16-0.
Jefferson then punted the ball back to T-V, and once again the Patriots were on the move.
Wilson took the ball inside the 5-yard line and was stopped short of the goal … it would also turn out to be a game ending play for Wilson as Jefferson defender fell hard on his ankle and he was unable to return to the contest.
Back-up quarterback Trey Frech was called into duty, and he scored on a QB keeper up the middle to go up 22-0.
Jefferson put its best drive of the first half together but stalled out on the Patriots 22-yard line.
Frech then hooked up on 37-yard pass to Noah Burns on a drive down to the 15-yard line before fumbling the ball away to Jefferson.
The Broncos turned it right back over as Josh Wiford intercepted the Broncos pass and raced 25-yards for a T-V score to go up 28-0 at 8:32 in the second quarter.
Frech connected again with Austin Bruner moments later as he got behind the defense and ran in the aerial for a 29-yard TD at 4:46. Frech kicked the extra point to make the score 35-0.
When Wilson left the game there might have been some concern, but Frech stepped forward.
“Trey came in and was a little shaky on his first couple of series, but he settled down and did a great job,” Tri-Village coach Jason Schondelmyer said.
Bruner would score again a few minutes later as he stepped in front of a Jefferson receiver and ran untouched for 65 yards to finish the scoring for Tri-Village as the Patriots led 42-0 going into the half.
Jefferson was unable to mount any real challenge in the second half as Tri-Village would go on to record a 54-6 win to start its season.
“There were a lot of positives for us today,” Schondelmyer said.
“We had a lot of kids that really stepped up in their first ever varsity game. Gavin Richards made some big plays on defense. (Joshua) Wilford had a couple of pick sixes so I’m extremely pleased with the guys on both sides of the ball today. Josh is a great kid; he’s a captain for us, and I’m happy for him.
“We had a lot of penalties, and that needs to be addressed,” Schondelmyer said. “Our kids are giving a great effort, but I think they are desperate on not finishing their blocks and jumping off-sides in anticipation of the snap of the ball. We need to correct these things, but other than that, I’m pretty pleased with the way they did.
“The big thing about this game was getting that monkey off our backs and getting that first win in school history. We’re very proud of the kids and the way they played,” Schondelmyer concluded.
Tri-Village goes to 1-0 on the year and will travel out of state Friday to take on Wes-Del, Indiana, a team that is 2-0 on the year.