MEDINA — There were plenty of fireworks Friday night at Kenneth Dukes Stadium. Unfortunately for the Medina football team, they all came in a postgame display that was part of homecoming festivities.
On the field, Strongsville completely dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball, as the Bees managed only two late touchdowns against the Mustangs’ second string while losing 38-13 in Northeast Ohio Conference cross-division action.
“That was the story of the game,” Medina coach Dan Sutherland said. “Their players dominated us on both sides up front. They were bigger and stronger. Our kids played hard, but they were giving up 100 pounds on both sides.”
Even with 6-foot-6, 272-pound offensive left tackle Brandon Bailey getting ejected midway through the first quarter after an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, the Mustangs’ superiority in the trenches was tangible.
Strongsville (4-2) didn’t do anything real fancy, but its massive O-line paved the way for tailback Dominic Lombardo to gain 144 yards on 24 carries, including touchdown runs of 3, 4 and 8 yards.
When Lombardo needed a break, sophomore Zach Kahn (12 carries, 57 yards) entered and carried on nine straight plays and 11 out of 12.
The Bees (3-3) managed to hold Strongsville to a 25-yard Drew Shephard field goal on that possession, but they grew tired as the game wore on and the Mustangs continued to pound away while finishing with 384 yards total offense.
“They grinded us down up front and made plays,” Sutherland said. “It’s discouraging for the kids and the coaches when that happens, but I will give our kids credit. They fought hard all game.”
When Lombardo and Kahn weren’t hurting Medina, quarterback Bobby Cole was. The 6-2, 175-pound junior completed 11-of-16 passes for 170 yards, including a 49-yard TD to Drew Robertson (6 catches, 108 yards) and an 8-yard score to 6-4, 265-pound tight end Jake Oblak.
“They were way better than I thought,” Sutherland said. “They were physical.”
Medina also didn’t have much success on offense save for a 71-yard TD run by Ian Crawley (8 carries, 99 yards) with Strongsville up 38-0 midway through the fourth quarter and a 20-yard scoring scamper by Ryan Wehrmeyer with 1:41 left.
The Bees had 127 yards total offense on those final two drives, but only 119 the rest of the night.
Quarterback Collin Minor was 4-for-7 for 40 yards and an interception in the first half and 0-for-6 in the second, while fullback Jerry Klue finished with 20 yards on nine attempts.
Medina also fumbled four times, losing three. The Bees’ four turnovers led to only seven Strongsville points or the final score would have been worse.
“They completely took us out of our game plan on both sides of the ball,” Sutherland said. “They dictated how the game was going to be played.”
Contact Rick Noland at (330) 721-4061 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Fan him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter @RickNoland.
Strongsville 38, Medina 13
STRONGSVILLE 7 10 14 7 — 38
MEDINA 0 0 0 13 — 13
S — Dominic Lombardo 3 run (Drew Shephard kick), 3:52.
S — Shephard 25 field goal, 7:50.
S — Drew Robertson 49 pass from Bobby Cole (Shephard kick), 2:05.
S — Lombardo 4 run (Shephard kick), 7:25.
S — Jake Oblak 8 pass from Cole (Shephard kick), 3:16.
S — Lombardo 8 run (Shephard kick), 11:55.
M — Ian Crawley 71 run (Dean McNeil kick), 6:07.
M — Ryan Wehrmeyer 20 run (run failed), 1:41.