Cooler weather arrived in Fayette County Friday making it an almost perfect night for a football game at Gardner Park.
The Washington Blue Lions welcomed the Chillicothe Cavaliers for the Frontier Athletic Conference opener.
The Blue Lions made it two wins in a row over Chillicothe, pummeling the Cavaliers, 38-7.
“Our kids played with emotion,” Washington head coach Chuck Williamson said. “They played their hearts out. I couldn’t be prouder of a bunch of Blue Lions than I am right now.”
Despite a penalty on Washington prior to the first snap of the game, the Blue Lions marched the ball down the field for a quick score when Ethan Rogers-Wright hit Eli Lynch for a 6-yard touchdown.
Grant Kuhlwein’s extra-point kick gave the Blue Lions a 7-0 lead at the 10:28 mark of the opening quarter.
Washington converted an on-side kick, recovered by Tyler Tackage at the Chillicothe 40-yard line.
However, Chillicothe intercepted the ball on the first play of the possession.
Chillicothe could not move the ball, and when they went to punt, it was partially blocked by Alex Hamrick.
The Cavs had a second interception, however that was nullified by a penalty.
The first quarter ended with the Blue Lions in front, 7-0.
The Blue Lions mishandled the next Chillicothe punt, but the Cavaliers could not mount a threat.
The Cavaliers soon turned the ball back over with a fumble, recovered by Hamrick.
The Blue Lions were able to move the ball down into Chillicothe territory, setting up a 30-yard field goal by Kuhlwein at the 5:23 mark.
Chillicothe scored what proved to be its only touchdown of the night, a 19-yard run by Kameron Smith. The extra-point kick by Jacob Coffland was good, making the score 10-7 with 3:59 to play in the first half.
Rogers-Wright completed a pass to Jerome Mack that was good for 47 yards.
That set up Washington’s next score.
Rogers-Wright completed a pass to Calum Brown. He was hit and fumbled the ball. It was recovered in the end zone by Lynch for the touchdown with 39.3 seconds remaining in the ball.
The extra-point kick was blocked, leaving Washington with a 16-7 halftime lead.
With three minutes remaining in the third quarter and the Cavaliers pinned back near their own goal line, a hit on the quarterback resulted in a fumble. The Chillicothe quarterback fell on the ball, resulting in a safety for the Blue Lions, bumping the score up to 18-7, Washington.
Less than one minute of game time later, Rogers-Wright connected again to Lynch, this time for 28 yards and another touchdown. Kuhlwein’s kick made it 25-7, Blue Lions.
In the fourth quarter, Chase Sluder scored a pair of touchdowns for Washington to seal the victory.
First, Sluder ran it in from 4-yards out. Kuhlwein’s kick made it 32-7 at the 7:46 mark.
On Chillicothe’s next possession, Sluder intercepted a pass and returned the ball 94-yards for the final score of the game. The extra-point kick was no good, setting the final at 38-7.
The Blue Lions had 268 yards of offense on 42 plays, while Chillicothe had 168 yards on 37 plays.
Ethan-Rogers Wright was 15 of 25 passing for 201 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
Five different Blue Lions caught passes, led by Eli Lynch with six receptions for 60 yards and two touchdowns. Lynch was honored briefly at halftime for his pass receiving. He now holds the Blue Lion record for pass receptions and receiving yardage and is on pace to set a new single season receiving record. Look for more details on this next week in the Record-Herald.
Washington had 67 yards rushing, led by Jameson McCane with 63 on 15 carries.
Collier Brown led the Blue Lion defense with six tackles.
Washington (4-2 overall, 1-0 FAC) will host Jackson next Friday.
Chillicothe (1-5 overall, 0-1 FAC) will host Hillsboro next week.