STRATTANVILLE — The Brookville Raiders proved Friday night that a win doesn't have to be glamorous in their 28-19 victory over the Clarion-Limestone Lions.
"An ugly win is just as good as a pretty win, and we were able to keep battling and score more points than them, plain and simple," said Chris Dworek, Raider varsity coach.
After a combined 24 penalty flags and nine turnovers between both teams, the Brookville Raiders were able to outlast the Lions, who were hot on the comeback trail.
"We're just flying around going full speed, and its hard to get things going when they're so fast on defense, so that's a lot of the problem too. Those are just things we need to work on and talk about and watch (during) films," said Dworek.
The Raiders were led by a dominant rushing performance from junior running back Brodie Zacherl, who dashed for 193 yards on 24 carries with two rushing TDs (59, 20) and one 5-yard TD reception.
Quarterback Cameron Yard also broke triple digits in rushing with 101 yards on 15 attempts, with a 1-yard TD run. He also completed 6 of 13 passes for 65 yards, with a 5-yard TD pass and two interceptions.
C-L received the ball to start the contest. Lion quarterback Christian Bakewell began throwing on the second play of C-L's first drive.
Brookville's "D" provided Bakewell with too much pressure, and he didn't complete a pass on the first drive, which ultimately ended in a Will Rupert punt.
Brookville took over on C-L's own 35-yard line. Yard and Zach Vroman combined for 33 rushing yards over five plays, putting the Raiders two yards away from the score.
Just when the Raiders looked to grab an early lead, Vroman fumbled on the handoff from Yard, and the Lions recovered.
The Lions only made it to their own 23-yard line before they were forced to punt once again.
Vroman received the punt and ran the ball to the C-L 37-yard line.
On the first play of the new drive, Yard connected to Zacherl for a 32-yard gain. Two plays later the pair hooked up again for a 5-yard score. Yard booted in the PAT and put the Raiders up 7-0.
After the kickoff, the Lions took over from their own 25-yard line.
Bakewell found Chase Alcorn open on the first play of the drive for a gain of 12 yards.
Brookville was penalized on the next two plays, allowing the Lions to take over from the Raider 49-yard line.
C-L struggled on downs one and two, accumulating only two yards. On third and eight, Bakewell scrambled in an attempt to find a receiver, only to be sacked by Vroman for a loss of 17 yards.
The Lions could not overcome the deficit and were forced to punt once again.
Brookville took over from its own 41 yard line. It took only one play and a mean stiff-arm for Zacherl to break free for a 59-yard TD. Yard kicked another PAT and put the Raiders up 14-0.
Yard attempted the onside kick but didn't cover the 10 yards needed to give the Raiders a shot at reclaiming the possession. On the ensuing drive, Bakewell and Mario Rombold hooked up twice for 32 yards, but a chop block penalty and a sack by Nathan Bonfardine put the Lions at a fourth and 25 scenario, forcing them to punt.
The Raiders took over at their own 26-yard line. On the ninth play of the drive, Brookville had the ball at the opposing 39-yard line and was facing a fourth and one.
Yard kept the ball and ran all 39 yards to the end zone, but a holding violation forced the Raiders to repeat the down, negating the TD.
The next play, Yard scampered for four yards and a first down.
With a new set of downs, Yard tried to connect to Evan Matheny down the right side line but was unable due to a pass interference call against the Lions.
The Raiders were 20 yards away from the end zone when Yard handed off to Zacherl, who took the ball up the middle for the score. Yard connected on the PAT and put the Raiders on top 21-0.
Brookville didn't score again until half-way through the third quarter. On the scoring drive, Zacherl and Bonfardine combined for 61 rushing yards over a 10-play span, which put Brookville one yard away from the end zone.
On third and goal, Yard punched the ball in for the Raider score. He connected on another PAT to put Brookville on top, 28-0.
The Raiders had possession of the ball going into the final quarter, and a Lion shutout was beginning to look inevitable. On third and four, Yard tried to connect with Kiefer Gilhousen deep, but the pass was picked off by the Lions' Jesse Pezzuti.
On the ensuing drive, Bakewell connected on five of seven passes for 31 yards.
On third and ten, Bakewell found Tommy Smith open for a 28-yard score. Rupert booted the PAT in to cut the Brookville lead to 28-7.
After a Lions' onside kick and a penalty flag against them, the Raiders took over on the opposing 36 yard line.
Two plays into the drive, Zacherl fumbled and the Lions recovered.
The Lions were not able to score on the next drive due to a clutch interception by Nathan St. Laurent.
A defensive holding call on the interception forced Brookville to start its drive from its own 6-yard line.
On the second play of the drive, Raider QB Bobby McGranor was drilled by a Lion defender on a handoff attempt to Cole Clever, and C-L's Brent Slater grabbed the loose ball and took it in for the score.
The Raider defense blocked the PAT, keeping the score at 28-13.
Brookville's following drive once again ended on a Zacherl fumble, then a horse collar penalty put the Lions 11 yards away from the end zone.Two players later, Bakewell connected to Smith again for a 10-yard TD.
Bakewell could not find a open receiver on the 2-point conversion, so the score remained at 28-19.
With 59 seconds remaining in the game, the Lions tried to regain possession on the onside kick but Matheny grabbed the ball and held on tight to secure a Raider victory.
Yard kneeled twice to run out the remaining time on the clock to hold onto the 28-19 win.
"It was definitely ugly," said Dworek. "C-L has some good coaches and they had their guys ready, and our guys hopefully learned a valuable lesson for the rest of the year and for the rest of the time that they play football. You always have to worry about yourself and execute and don't let your guard down ever," he added.
With the win, the Raiders' record improved to 6-2.