Saturday, November 09, 2013Football Playoffs: Ada beats Jefferson for second time
DELPHOS -- Ada's Matt Wilcox knew the correct play was probably to just knock the ball down.
Wilcox's 97-yard touchdown interception return on a fourth-down play was the dagger Friday as Ada defeated Delphos Jefferson 27-22 in a rematch of Northwest Conference opponents in a Division VI, Region 20 quarterfinal at Stadium Park.
Ada (8-3) advances to play Convoy Crestview (9-2) next Friday at 7:30 p.m. at a site to be determined. Crestview outscored Lima Central Catholic 48-35 on Friday night.
Jefferson finished its season at 9-2 with both losses coming to the Bulldogs.
Ada held a 21-16 lead as the clock ticked down in the fourth quarter.
The Wildcats were moving the ball, however, behind the arm of quarterback Austin Jettinghoff. He took Jefferson from its 11 to the Ada 9, where the Wildcats stalled and faced fourth-and-4 with just less than four minutes remaining.
Jettinghoff's pass was tipped by a couple players before landing in the hands of Wilcox, Ada's senior free safety. He took off and picked up a convoy of blockers, running unimpeded to the end zone with 3:32 remaining.
"Yes, that is the correct play and we may have eaten more clock by doing that, but we'll take it," Ada coach Bob Olwin said of knocking the ball down. "There were so many fourth downs. I didn't realize that one was a fourth down."
Wilcox thought he had a chance to make a deciding play.
"All season our coach has been telling us that, to knock it down on fourth down," he said.
"His voice was in my head, but when it came down to that sort of play, it just came down in my hands. I just knew I had to do something with it.
"I just took off, and there was a lot of grass in front of me."
As it turned out, Ada needed that play because Jefferson wasn't finished.
Jettinghoff, 20 of 32 passing for 281 yards, engineered a scoring drive that got the Wildcats within five points once again.
His 13-yard strike to Jordan McCann with 1:32 left got Jefferson close, but the ensuing onside kick sailed out of bounds and Ada moved on to Week 12.
Wilcox had a lot to do with it. His key interception was the spark on defense and he shined on the offensive side as well. Wilcox completed 23 of 29 passes for 233 yards and two TDs, and ran 15 times for 67 yards and a score.
"He's a champion in a lot of things," Olwin said of his multi-sport senior.
Wilcox spurred a 14-play scoring drive to begin the second half that ate nearly six minutes off the clock. He completed 6 of 7 passes during the drive, the last a 12-yard scoring toss to Austin Dumbaugh that put the Bulldogs ahead 15-10.
Jettinghoff and Wilcox took turns leading scoring drives on the next two possessions. The Jefferson quarterback hit Jordan McCann for a 37-yard gain to Ada's 1, and the Wildcats took back the lead as Zavier Buzard scored from there.
"He's a nice quarterback. He did some things we hadn't seen in the first game," Olwin said.
Ada defeated Jefferson 25-20 in Week 8 as the Bulldogs, Wildcats and Convoy Crestview finished in a three-way tie for the NWC title.
Wilcox did his part to ensure Ada got a second victory over Jefferson, but he needed some help.
Wilcox missed several plays with cramps as Ada answered Jefferson with a scoring drive to go up for good. Dumbaugh took over at QB and rushed three times for 9 yards, and tailback Blake Ansley picked up three first downs on the ground.
Wilcox returned and scored from 4 yards out early in the fourth quarter to give Ada a 21-16 lead. The Bulldogs never trailed.
"We didn't make any breaks for ourselves tonight," Jefferson coach Bub Lindeman said. "I think in games like this, you have to step up and make big plays and we fell a little short tonight."
Jefferson got on the board on its first drive as Tyler Mox returned the opening kickoff 70 yards to Ada's 10. Kurt Wollenhaupt kicked a 25-yard field goal to give the Wildcats a 3-0 lead.
Ada answered late in the first quarter with a 30-yard scoring pass from Wilcox to Spencer Archer.
Jefferson took a 10-7 lead into halftime as Buzard scored on a 7-yard run with 3:24 left in the second quarter.
Ada 7 0 8 12 -- 27
Delphos Jefferson 3 7 6 6 -- 22
DJ -- FG Wollenhaupt 25
ADA -- Archer 30 pass from Wilcox (Secor kick)
DJ -- Buzard 7 run (Wollenhaupt kick)
ADA -- Dumbaugh 12 pass from Wilcox (Wilcox run)
DJ -- Buzard 1 run (kick failed)
ADA -- Wilcox 97 interception return (conversion failed)
DJ -- McCann 13 pass from Jettinghoff (conversion failed)
First Downs 21 22
Rushes-yards 33-104 23-126
Passing Yards 233 281
Comp-Att-Int 23-29-1 20-32-1
Punts-Avg. 2-33.5 2-33.5
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards 6-52 10-100
rushing -- Ada, Ansley 12-46, Wilcox 15-67, Dumbaugh 3-9, Team (minus-18). Delphos Jefferson, Buzard 16-101, Jettinghoff 6-24, Thompson 1-2.
passing -- Ada, Wilcox 23-29-1-233. Delphos Jefferson, Jettinghoff 20-32-1-281.
receiving -- Ada, Conley 4-47, Ansley 6-40, Archer 5-49, Waller 2-37, Dumbaugh 6-60. Delphos Jefferson, Mox 4-40, Thompson 9-161, Teman 1-14, Dudgeon 1-8, Buzard 1-18, McCann 4-67, Gorman 1-7.
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