By Rob Kiser
The Piqua football team did a great job of staying in the game for a little over a half.
But, after the Indians scored their first TD to get back with 15-6 early in the third quarter, they could do nothing the rest of the game and lost 30-6 to Franklin Friday night at Atrium Field.
Given every thing that went wrong in the first half, it was amazing the Indians trailed just 15-0 at the break.
Franklin outgained Piqua 190-9 in the opening two quarters, which included a 24-yard loss on a bad snap on a punt that resulted in a safety.
Only three Wildcat turnovers helped Piqua stay in the game.
Franklin was driving on its opening possession, but Hayden Schrubb leaped to intercept a pass at the Piqua 31.
After a three-and-out by Piqua, Franklin went 66 yards in six plays.
On a first and 10 at the Piqua 34, Braden White connected with Trent Scott on a short pass. Scott eluded one would be tackler and ran all the way to the Piqua 8-yard line and Ryan Montgomery ran the ball in from the three two plays later.
Nate Monnin blocked the PAT kick, keeping the score at 6-0.
After another Piqua three-and-out, the snap on the punt ended up in the end zone and Matt Centers tackled Micah Karn for a safety.
Montgomery would then return the free kick 71 yards and Matt Schneider’s PAT made it 15-0 with 2:09 remaining in the first quarter.
An interception and fumble recovery, both by Ben Schmiesing, helped keep Piqua in the game. The Indians didn’t pick up a first down until late in the second quarter, but were able to get to halftime trailing just 15-0.
Piqua looked like a different team to start the second half.
Schmieisng returned the kickoff 38 yards to the Piqua 45.
Austin Davis had a 16-yard pass to Monnin to convert a third down and Schmiesing had a 24-yard run down to the six and ran it in on the next play to make it 15-6.
The Piqua defense came to life with a three-and-out, but Piqua failed to catch Xach Arnwine’s punt and it rolled 25 yards inside the Indians five before it was picked up.
The return man was tackled at the nine, a net 51-yard punt, and all the monetum seemed to leave Piqua at that point.
Montgomery added an eight-yard touchdown run, with Schneider kicking the PAT and the Wildcats final score came on a six-yard pass from White to Matt Spurlock, with Montgomery running for the PAT to make the final 30-6.
Schmiesing finished with 82 yards on 11 carries, while Allen Schrubb had 63 yards on 16 carries.
Davis was four of 11 passing for 37 yards.
Montgomery rushed for 71 yards on 14 carries, while Bailee Moore had 84 yards on 15 carries.
Montgomery and White combined to complete 11 of 16 passes for 110 yards with two interceptions.
Piqua, 1-2, will try to get back on track when West Carrollton visits Friday.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.