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Thursday, Mar. 30, 2023

Jefferson ekes out win over Knights

Van Wert independent sports

CONVOY – The Crestview Knights gave it their all, but came up just one score short as the Delphos Jefferson Wildcats spoiled the Knights’ Homecoming festivities with a 32-27 Northwest Conference victory.

Crestview's Preston Zaleski (10) finds some running room in the first quarter of Friday's game against Delphos Jefferson. (Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent)

The Knights scored first at the 9:44 mark of the first quarter when quarterback Preston Zaleski ran 34 yards for a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage after the Crestview defense stopped Jefferson on its first possession. Kameron Grubaugh kicked the point-after and the Knights led 7-0.

Jefferson came back to score twice in the second period, first on a 27-yard pass from Austin Jettinghoff to Zavier Buzard and then on a 13-yard run by Quinten Wessell. Jettinghoff kicked the extra points for both scores and it was 14-7, Wildcats, with 1:40 remaining in the half.

That was 59 seconds more than was needed for the Knights to score. Malcom Oliver ran the ball into the end zone from 6 yards out and Grubaugh kicked the PAT to even the score at 14-all at halftime.

Delphos Jeff got its running game moving in the second half, but neither team could convert yardage into points in the third quarter. The fourth quarter was another story.

The Jeffcats’ Buzard, who ran for 126 yards on 24 carries in the game, scored first in the quarter from 10 yards out to put the Wildcats ahead 20-14 after the PAT kick failed.

Jefferson went to the air for the next score as Jettinghoff connected with Ross Thompson for a 37-yard scoring strike with 9:13 remaining in the game. The PAT was unsuccessful again and Delphos led 26-14.

Crestview then scored when Zaleski found Oliver in the open for a 20-yard touchdown pass. Grubaugh split the uprights and it was 26-21 with 5:09 remaining in the contest.

Jefferson put some distance between it and the Knights when Buzard rambled 44 yards for the score. The point-after failed, but the Wildcats led 32-21 with just 3:18 left to play.

Crestview scored one more time less than a minute later when Zaleski found Venice Roberts on the other end of a 16-yard scoring strike at the 2:28 mark. The PAT try failed and that’s how the game ended.

The Wildcats compiled 373 yards of total offense, with 222 yards of that on the ground. In addition to Buzard’s 126 yards of rushing offense, Wessell had 97 yards rushing on 14 carries. Zaleski led Crestview with 62 yards rushing on 12 carries.

The Knights had 339 yards of total offense, with 220 yards of that through the air. Zaleski was 21 of 37 passing with two touchdowns and an interception. Jefferson’s Jettinghoff hit 7 of 15 passes for 151 yards, two TDs and three interceptions.

Penalties were about even, with the Knights getting called for three for 40 yards and Jefferson whistled for five for 45 yards. Crestview fumbled three times and lost one of those, while the Wildcats didn’t lose the handle once during the game.

With the loss, Crestview is 3-3 on the year and 1-3 in the NWC. Jefferson is now 5-1 overall and 3-1 in league play.

POSTED: 09/29/12 at 7:30 am. FILED UNDER: Sports