MILLERSBURG - With the Division III, Region 11 playoff game between Indian Creek and West Holmes knotted at seven at halftime, both teams were searching for a play to swing momentum in its favor.
The Knights found that play on their second drive of the second half from quarterback Gabe Snyder, and things snowballed from there en route to a 35-7 win over the Redskins Friday at West Holmes High School.
"It's one of those things," said Indian Creek head coach Andrew Connor. "They're a good football team, and they made a few more plays than we did.
"One thing I can't say enough was the kids never quit. They played hard, it just wasn't our night."
Snyder, who on seven first-half drop backs went 0-for-5 with an interception and was sacked twice, faked a handoff, booted right, and found clear sailing down the home sideline for a 61-yard touchdown run. Logan Gallion knocked the extra point through and West Holmes led 14-7 with 9:26 left in the third quarter.
Things continued to swing to the Knights' side on their next possession.
West Holmes 35, Indian Creek 7
Indian Creek 7 0 0 0 7
West Holmes 7 0 14 14 35
IC: Goodrich 31 pass from Young (Young kick)
WH: Perone 29 run (Gallion kick)
WH: Snyder 61 run (Gallion kick)
WH: Mackey 8 run (Gallion kick)
WH: Arnold 4 pass from Snyder (Gallion kick)
WH: Perone 6 run (Gallion kick)
RUSHING: Indian Creek 40-96 (Woods 14-46, Young 8-27, Roar 6-15, Gribble 1-5, Huynh 1-3); West Holmes 49-299-4 (Perone 24-194-2, Mackey 14-31-1, Snyder 5-49-1, Hay 4-19, Ogi 1-3, Carsner 1-3).
PASSING: Indian Creek 9-25-134-1-0 (All by Young); West Holmes 2-7-65-1-1 (All by Snyder.
RECEIVING: Indian Creek (Goodrich 2-58-1, Kamarec 2-41, Roar 2-11, Lathem 1-14, Lawrence 1-9, Woods 1-1); West Holmes (Arnold 2-65-1).
FIRST DOWNS: Indian Creek 9; West Holmes 16.
PENALTIES-YARDS: Indian Creek 5-60; West Holmes 5-30.
FUMBLES-LOST: Indian Creek 3-1; West Holmes 2-1.
Snyder threw the ball up for grabs on second-and-seven to Brady Arnold who was covered step-for-step by Frankie Kamarec. Arnold tipped the ball up and pulled in a circus grab for a 31-yard gain at the Indian Creek 35. Four plays later, Garrett Mackey ran in from eight yards out and Gallion hit the PAT for the 21-7 lead.
Another big play set up the Knights on their next possession. Facing a third-and-26 West Holmes handed off to Layne Perone who busted loose for a 29-yard scamper and a first down. Three plays later, on the first play of the fourth quarter, Snyder hit Arnold for a 30-yard touchdown. Gallion's point after made the score 28-7 and West Holmes cruised from there.
The Knights added one more score on a Perone six-yard run to make the final 35-7.
Things looked good early for the Redskins after Zach Williams forced a fumble on a sack of Snyder that was recovered by Zach Connor.
Back-to-back completions from Alex Young to Corey Goodrich put Indian Creek up. The first was a 27-yard connection on second-and-26 followed immediately by a 31-yard touchdown. Young put the extra point through for the 7-0 lead.
West Holmes tied things up when Perone, who ran for 194 yards on 24 carries, broke free from 29 yards out with 2:11 left in the first quarter.
Offensively the Redskins were led by Young's nine-of 25 for 134 and a score through the air. He added 27 on the ground. The Redskins managed just 96 yards on 40 carries on the ground.
"I just think West Holmes is good, and they just caused us some trouble up front," said Connor. "We just couldn't get anything clicking. We had a couple plays that were called back.
"It was some early mistakes. Sometimes you shoot yourself in the foot and it hurts you, and those things hurt us tonight."
West Holmes, as advertised, stuck primarily with the rushing attack. The Knights ran the ball 49 times for 299 yards and four scores led by Perone. Snyder finished the game two-for-seven for 65 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He was two-for-two for 65 yards and his score in the second half.
Indian Creek says goodbye to a senior class that won 17 games in its final two seasons and earned two playoff berths.
"A lot of teams talk about family, but these 18 seniors are a family," said Connor. "It just pulls at my gut that they won't be around anymore. What they've done for this program just goes without saying. They taught us how to do well. They led us to back-to-back playoff berths.
"I think the biggest thing is they taught us to handle adversity. They had a lot of adversity the last year, they just stuck together, and they're just good leaders.
"These guys were exceptional, they passed the torch down, and I think these underclassmen know that they have a lot to live up to."
West Holmes (10-1) moves on to face Steubenville Big Red Saturday at 7 p.m. at a site to be determined today.