The Fayette County Dragons Special Olympics Flag Football team won the State Division 1 Championship this weekend at the Ohio Special Olympics Flag Football tournament.
The Ohio Special Olympics State Flag Football Championships were held Oct. 2 and 3 at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Village, according to Chad Blakeley, Fayette County Board of Developmental Disabilities community first specialist and Special Olympics coordinator.
The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office provided an escort out of town Saturday morning. Sheriff Deputy Sgt. Parks, Dragon supporters — Jacob Hays on a motorcycle and the Wayne Turner family in two jeeps — escorted the Dragon family and a convoy of family members from Robinson Road down Elm Street and out Columbus Avenue to the edge of town.
The Dragons were looking for their third straight state championship: 2018, 2019 and 2021— the 2020 season had been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They completed their goal by winning two games on Saturday to earn a spot in the finals against Westerville.
The finals were held in Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium on Sunday. The Dragons had a tough game against the Westerville defense. Westerville had the first possession and scored a 40-yard touchdown that was called back because of an illegal block. This woke up the Dragon defense.
Two plays later, Katelyn Runnels intercepted a pass that set up the first Dragon score. The Dragons scored on a pass from Devin Ison to Erin Bell for the first score. Later in the first half, Devin Ison connected with a short pass to Brother Rodney Ison for a score. Both teams failed to score in the second half.
The final score was 12-0 Dragons, giving the Dragons the three-peat.
The coaching staff was impressed by Katelyn Runnels’ defensive play. She finished with one interception, multiple pass break-ups and numerous flag pulls (equivalent to a tackle). Coach Tim Stewart said Katelyn was the MVP of the finals.
The Dragons finish out their championship season this Saturday at 8 p.m. against the Guns and Hoses (local first responders) at Miami Trace Stadium. Admission is free and a 50/50 raffle will be offered.