Handful of plays cost Twinsburg football victory vs. Revere

Steve Batko
Correspondent
Twinsburg quarterback Trevor Horvath fires a pass during the Tigers' 31-7 loss at Copley Sept. 11.

It doesn’t take a ton of bad plays to come up on the short end of a high school football game.

This is what Twinsburg is going through.

The Tigers played a solid defensive game against visiting Revere Sept. 17, but it was the plays on defense that Twinsburg didn’t make which made the difference.

Revere (2-1) won 28-14 over Twinsburg (0-2) at Tiger Stadium on Senior Night.

“A lot of guys played their hearts out tonight,” said head coach Mike Bell, praising his senior athletes.

“There were just a handful of plays that we did not win that cost us a win – Revere just made more plays than we did,” explained Bell.

Against a strong Minuteman defense, Twinsburg’s offense sputtered with just four first downs and only 58 total yards of offense.

Twinsburg is still struggling to get its ground attack going as the Tigers had a paltry 13 yards rushing on 13 attempts.

“We just need to remain focused and continue to get better,” offered Bell.

The Tigers had two monumental plays on special teams, which should have poised the hosts to gain momentum and a win, but rather, Revere came up with the bigger plays.

On defense, the Tigers had a few breakdowns in pass coverage as a modest Revere aerial attack burned Twinsburg several times.

Revere quarterback Zack Coffey was 10-14 passing for 150 yards and two touchdowns.

After a Tiger punt to open the game, Revere responded with a 12-play drive that featured a pair of fourth-down conversions – the latter coming on fourth and goal from the Tiger 4.

Minuteman wide out Cameron Penzenik was so wide open on fourth and goal that his own quarterback did not initially see him in the flat. Yet Coffey still had time to connect for a 4-yard TD pass at the 3:21 mark of the first period.

Twinsburg’s defense held its own against a massive Revere offensive line, led by Ohio State recruit Ben Christman (6-foot-6, 299 pounds).

In the first quarter Twinsburg managed just one yard of offense and no first downs.

After the Tigers snagged its initial first down of the game at the 9:09 mark of the first half on an 11-yard pass from junior Trevor Horvath to senior Alex Branch, Revere had an interception to dash a possible Tiger scoring threat.

However, senior Manny Curtis provided the spark Twinsburg needed.

Curtis broke through to block a Revere punt that senior Aiden Corrigan caught and raced 57 yards down the sideline for a huge touchdown. Junior Shantonu Banerjee booted the extra point and it was 7-7 at the 6:13 mark of the first half.

The Tiger defense forced a Revere punt, but when Branch attempted to pick up a punt off a bounce, he fumbled the ball and Revere recovered at the Tiger 22.

On fourth and goal from the two, Kent State recruit Shane Slattery ran for a TD behind Christman and it was 14-7 with 1:14 left in the first half.

In the second half, Twinsburg forced a Revere punt and Curtis struck again.

Curtis blocked another punt with a rush up the middle and senior Antoine Brown picked up the loose ball and dashed 58 yards for a momentum-changing touchdown.

Brown’s big time TD made it 14-14 at the 7:04 mark of the third quarter.

On fourth down from the Tiger 24 on the next drive, Curtis broke up a Revere pass to thwart another drive.

A sack by Tiger senior linebacker and special teams ace Dylan Crouch held off Revere, but Twinsburg couldn’t score as the drive stalled.

“We had some huge plays that we didn’t fully take advantage of and you can’t win games when you do that,” explained Bell. “I think the good thing is that all of these mistakes are things that are correctable.”

On Revere’s first play on the ensuing drive, Penzenik went up and got a catch against Branch to score on a 55-yard TD pass to put Revere up 21-14 with 7:47 left in the contest.

“Our defense will play lights out and then, we will miss something and it costs us,” noted Bell. “We need to eliminate those mistakes.”

From that point on, the bottom fell out for Twinsburg.

The ensuing kickoff was a squib kick that the ball bounced off a Tiger and was recovered by Revere at the hosts’ 35-yard line.

A few plays later, Penzenik scored around right end for a 4-yard TD run to push the lead to 28-14 with 5:17 left.

On Twinsburg’s first play from scrimmage on the next drive, 6-foot-5, 275-pound end Aidan Palmer stripped Horvath and carried the fumble return to the Tiger 13.

Revere missed a field goal attempt, but Twinsburg’s offense sputtered in the final three minutes.

Horvath was 6-17 passing for 45 yards and Corrigan had 21 yards rushing on five carries.

Senior wide out Logan Genos had three catches for 15 yards for the Tigers, who host Tallmadge Sept. 25.

Junior linebacker Joe Bova played well for Twinsburg, which did a great job against Slattery (30 rushes for 85 yards) and the Revere rushing game.

Twinsburg’s defense held Revere to 10 first downs and 121 rush yards on a whopping 52 attempts.