• Cameron Burrows, CB, Trotwood (Ohio) Madison – The Rams welcomed Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) University School to Ohio, and the visiting Suns left the Buckeye state with a 33-14 victory.
Burrows made six tackles, returned two punts 42 yards and compiled 28 yards on two kickoff returns. But it was the visitors who ruled the day. After Jalen Battle started the scoring by recovering a blocked punt for a score in the first quarter, running back Jordan Scarlett added a pair of rushing touchdowns on runs of 1 and 22 yards, respectively, to give the Suns (1-0) a 19-0 halftime lead.
Trotwood (0-1) attempted to climb back into the game thanks to a 4-yard touchdown run by Isreal Green early in the third quarter. The Suns answered with two fourth-quarter touchdowns to put the game out of reach, including a 1-yard Scarlett score.
Trotwood’s Romello Crisp added a 92-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to close the scoring in the final minute.
• Ezekiel Elliott, RB, St. Louis (Mo.) Burroughs – Elliott kicked his season off in style, scoring four touchdowns in his team’s 43-14 win at Cape Girardeau Central.
The Bombers (1-0) cruised behind the play of Elliott who rushed for, caught and returned a punt for touchdowns. He ran for scores of 13 and 36 yards as John Burroughs built a 27-7 halftime lead. Elliott added a 49-yard touchdown reception and a 60-yard punt return for a score in the fourth quarter.
Elliott finished with 112 yards on 15 carries. He caught two passes for 68 yards.
• Tim Gardner, OT, Indianapolis Lawrence Central – The Bears improved to 2-0 on the season by throttling host Indianapolis North Central 38-3.
The ground attack led the way behind Gardner and the rest of the Lawrence Central offensive line. The Bears rushed for 340 yards on 43 carries, led by a pair of 100-yard rushers in Drake Christen (127) and Alex Rodriguez (113). The duo combined for three touchdowns in the victory.
North Central fell to 0-2.
• Michael Hill, DT, Pendleton, S.C. – The Pendleton defense started the season strong in a 56-14 win against visiting Pickens.
With 18 seniors on the roster, Pendleton came out prepared and build a 49-0 halftime lead before cruising to victory. One of those seniors, Jalen Dixon, led the offensive attack with 165 yards on 11 carries. He scored on a 79-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage to set the tone for the evening. Dixon finished with three TD runs – all in the first quarter.
Navy commit Colin Brady threw a pair of touchdowns.
• Darron Lee, S/QB, New Albany, Ohio – Reynoldsburg upended visiting New Albany 10-9 in the season opener for both teams.
A Nick Hetrick 27-yard field goal with 7:38 remaining proved to be the difference, giving the Raiders the win. New Albany drove inside Reynoldsburg territory in the final minutes but had the drive end with a fumble.
Reynoldsburg held a 7-0 lead at halftime thanks to a 47-yard TD pass from Jordan Aekins to Mykel Traylor-Bennett. The Eagles (0-1) tied the game in the third quarter on a 2-yard scoring run by Alan Watson. Hetrick gave the Raiders a 10-7 lead, and despite a safety recorded by New Albany in the fourth quarter, Reynoldsburg held on for the win.
• Evan Lisle, OT, Centerville, Ohio – The Elks rush-heavy offense never completely got in gear in a 34-21 loss at Cincinnati Elder.
Elder broke a 7-7 tie by scoring a late first-half touchdown and another to begin the second half to take command. The Panthers outgained Centerville 428-311. The Elks got their scores on the ground, naturally, running behind Lisle and the O-line. Kyle Wenning tied the game late in the second quarter with a 2-yard touchdown, and the running back led Centerville with 62 of his team’s 161 rushing yards.
Tim Roop and Jimmy Brooks added rushing scores of 3 and 23 yards, respectively, as the Elks attempted to mount a fourth-quarter rally that was not to be.
• Jalin Marshall, RB, Middletown, Ohio – Despite some heroics from Marshall, Cincinnati St. Xavier earned a 43-39 win against Middletown at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati.
Marshall ran out of magic late in the game, with his last pass of the game sailing high and out of the back of the end zone. He had driven the Middies (0-1) from the Middletown 15-yard line to the St. Xavier 3 with 8 seconds remaining before the comeback-attempt ended.
The Middlies had taken a 39-28 lead with 4:43 remaining behind three unanswered touchdowns. St. Xavier led 21-13 halftime lead. Marshall started the rally with a 23-yard touchdown pass to Lance Johnson that cut the lead to 21-19. The Middies then took the lead behind scoring runs of 1 and 5 yards by William Peters and Yvonte Glover, respectively.
The Bombers had the last laugh behind fourth-quarter touchdowns by Ben Glines and C.J. Hilliard. Glines scored on a 3-yard run, and a successful two-point conversion pass made the score 39-36 Middletown. St. X earned the win behind Hilliard’s run, which came with 52 seconds remaining.
For more on Marshall's night, see Bill Greene's recap.
• Billy Price, DT, Austintown (Ohio) Fitch – Price was right for Fitch in a 24-10 season-opening victory against Warren Harding.
With five minutes remaining and the Falcons holding a seven-point lead, Harding faced a fourth-and-1 at the Fitch 29. The Raiders handed the ball off to running back LeShun Daniels, and Price made sure Daniels did not get the yard he needed.
“I saw a guard pulling and saw that it was going to be a power (sweep) or some sort of trap,” Price told the Youngstown Vindicator. “I blew up (the lead blocker) and I saw LeShun bounce to the outside. I knew with him on my outside shoulder, I would be able to take care of business.”
Price did just that, nabbing Daniels behind the line of scrimmage. Daniels fumbled, and Fitch recovered the ball. The Falcons went on to score on a Matt Futkos rushing touchdown on the ensuing drive.
Daniels, a Boston College verbal commit, finished with 136 yards but needed a couple of more to keep his team in the game. Futkos, a quarterback, led Fitch with 51 yards rushing and 86 more through the air.
• Tracy Sprinkle, DE, Elyria, Ohio – The Pioneers began their season with a 63-28 win against visiting Amherst Steele, but it was not always pretty.
Elyria started slow, allowing Steele to open the scoring with a 52-yard touchdown pass from Eric Lamb to Kyle Kelley, before taking command.
“We came out slow,” Sprinkle told the Elyria Chronicle. “We thought they would let us run them over. Amherst is a good team. We had to come back from a little adversity.”
Elyria did that in a big way, albeit with a little help from their opponent. Steele lost four fumbles, and the Pioneer defense tightened up. Sprinkle helped the cause with a pair of sacks. Jordan Connell led the Elyria offense with 129 rushing yards and four touchdowns.
Sprinkle tweeted that he finished the game with two sacks, four tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and 11 tackles.
• Jayme Thompson, S, Toledo (Ohio) Central Catholic – The 2012 season started well for Central Catholic thanks to a 66-14 thumping of visiting Holland Springfield.
The Irish dominated on both sides of the football, outgaining the Blue Devils 455-147. Derich Weiland and Amir Edwards each scored twice in the win, with Edwards leading the rushing attack with 136 yards on eight carries. Paul Moses, Cedric Gray, Ryan Roberts, Stephon Campbell and Marquis Walker also added touchdowns for the Irish, and Jacob Studer kicked a 36-yard field goal.
Springfield’s lone scores came on a rushing touchdown by Elijah Shy and a TD reception by Ty Shy from Clay Fink.
The following players have yet to begin their seasons:
• J.T. Barrett, QB, Wichita Falls (Texas) Rider – Barrett and the Raiders open their season Aug. 31 at Abilene Cooper.
• Marcus Baugh, TE, Riverside (Calif.) North – The Huskies kick off Aug. 31 at Colton.
• Joey Bosa, DE, Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas – Miami Columbus will be Bosa and his team’s first opponent on Aug. 31.
• Taivon Jacobs, WR, Forestville (Md.) Suitland – The Rams do not open their season until Sept. 1 with a game against visiting Washington (D.C.) McKinley Tech.
• Johnny Townsend, P, Orlando (Fla.) Boone – The Braves open their season Aug. 31 at Winter Garden West Orange.
• Eli Woodard, CB, Voorhees (N.J.) Eastern – The Vikings open their season Sept. 7 at Sewell Washington Township.