By Sean Duffy
Brecksville, OH– Crazy that it is the last week of the regular season for the 2020 Northeast Ohio High School Football campaign, and playoff football begins in earnest next week. However, it is 2020 and crazy is the best and most accurate way to describe things. Crazy is also the proper term for the matchup that was our game of the week between the Wadsworth Grizzlies (1-3) and the Brecksville-Broadview Heights Bees ( 4-1).
The Bees were the first to score thanks to a 40 yd TD pass from Bees QB Joe Labas to Jeremy Jonozzo, the extra point made the score 7-0 in favor of the Bees with 7:50 remaining in the first quarter. Wadsworth would not be down for long as WR Anthony Cirino took the ensuing kickoff over 80 yards for a TD, and just like that the score was 7-7 with 7:35 remaining, the first quarter would end with a score of 7-7.
The second quarter was all about the defenses as both teams settled into a bend but don’t break type of effort. The Grizzlies defense was able to stop the Bees on fourth down multiple times forcing a turnover on downs. The Bees defense was equally up to the challenge forcing either a Wadsworth punt or turnover on downs for the entire quarter. Wadsworth’s defense would surrender a TD late in the half as Bees RB Garrett Kubitz would score on a 17 yd run, a missed extra point would give the Bees a 13-7 lead at half time.
The third quarter of this game saw an offensive explosion for both teams. The Bees scored first on a 33 yd TD pass from Joe Labas to Luke Gonim, a failed 2 pt conversion increased the Bees Lead 19-7 with 7:38 remaining in the third. Wadsworth’s offense finally found the end zone with a 67 yd TD pass from QB Mitchell Evans to WR Barret Labus, a made extra point cut the Bees’ lead to 19-14 with 7:13 left in the third. The Bees would respond with an explosive play of their own, a 68 yd TD pass from Labas to WR Luke Buckley, a made extra point made the score 26-14 with 5:13 remaining in the third quarter. Wadsworth QB Mitchell Evans would throw two more touchdown passes, a 20 yd pass to Cirino and a 27 yd pass to Labus, to end the third quarter with the Grizzlies leading 29-26.
Garrett Kubitz would add two rushing TDs to his nightly total. The First came from 3 yds out to make the score 32-29 with 9:50 remaining in the game . Kubitz would find pay dirt again from 15 yds to give the Bees a 38-29 lead with 5:00 remaining in the game. Wadsworth would not go away quietly as Mitchell Evans would connect with Carston Marshall for a 41 yd TD, a failed 2pt conversion made the score 38-35 with 4:02 left in the game. The Grizzlies would attempt an unsuccessful onside kick that set the bees up at midfield. A few plays later QB Joe Labas would score on a 31 yd touchdown run. it would prove to be the final nail in the Grizzlies coffin as Brecksville-Broadview Heights would beat Wadsworth 45-35
Wadsworth falls to 1-4 on the year and were led by QB Mitchell Evans who had 4 passing TDs and WRs Barrett Labus and Anthony Cirino who each scored 2 TDs . The Grizzlies begin their playoff journey next week as they host Westlake in the first round.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights improve to 5-1 and were led offensively by QB Joe Labas and RB Garrett Kubitz both combining for 7 touchdowns in the game. the Bees will get a first round bye and await the winner of the first round contest between Parma Valley Forge and Oregon Clay.