By Ben Robinson
COVINGTON — Covington hosted National Trail on Friday in a battle between two teams fielding 4-2 records.
But you’d never know it by the end result as Covington had its way with the Blazers en route to a 75-0 beatdown on homecoming night.
And the tone of the came was established from the outset as National Trail couldn’t manage a single yard on the opening possession of the game.
After a Blazer punt, Covington took just three plays to reach pay dirt on a six-yard run by Brayden Wiggins to give the Buccs a 7-0 lead just 2:03 into the game.
Another three-and-out followed for National Trail and Covington was able to overcome a penalty that negated a touchdown run by Andrew Cates with a 15-yard scoring jaunt by Trentin Alexander to push the Buccaneer lead to 14-0 with 3:52 left in the opening stanza.
Which is when the Covington defense joined in the scoring party as Duncan Copper and Kleyton Maschino scored on back-to-back interception returns from 65 and 38 yards to push the Buccaneer lead to 27-0 at the end of one.
The Blazers went three-and-out once again to started the second quarter, but Covington found itself behind the chains after a personal foul penalty moved the ball from the Buccaneer 40 to the 22.
After a 53-yard pitch and catch from Cade Schmelzer to Andrew Cates, Schmelzer found Kleyton Maschino open for a 25-yard scoring strike to extend the lead to 34-0 with 11:04 left in the first half.
Trying to keep pace with the offense, the Buccaneer defense made yet another big play on the ensuing possession as Brayden Wiggins stepped in front of a Blazer pass and raced 28 yards untouched for the score and a 41-0 lead.
Covington then pushed the advantage to 48-0 on a one-yard run by Teague Deaton on the Buccs’ next possession and followed with a three-play, 68-yard scoring drive capped by a 16-yard run by Andrew Cates.
The Buccaneers closed out the first half with a 41-yard interception return by Kleyton Maschino – his second of the contest and Covington’s fourth pick six of the first half.
Leading 61-0 to start the second half, the Buccaneers turned to their second unit and junior varsity squads for the remainder of the game, which was under a running clock due to OHSAA rules.
And the results were the same as Covington scored two more times on a 32-yard run by Deacon Shields and a two-yard run by Stephen Sporek.
In all, Covington benefitted from short fields all night en route to 316 yards of total offense to just 68 for National Trail – 54 of those coming in the second half.
Covington tallied 15 first downs on the night to just 2 for National Trail and won the turnover battle 6-1.
The win boosts Covington’s record to 5-2 overall and 4-1 in the CCC, while National Trail drops to 4-3 overall and 2-3 in the league.
Next week Covington travels to unbeaten Arcanum (7-0) for a rivalry battle with huge playoff implications.