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Eagles Come Up Short In Regular Season Football Finale

Posted on: October 28, 2017

Milford’s dreams of an outright Eastern Cincinnati Conference Championship came up just short as the Eagles dropped a 35-28 decision to West Clermont on a rain-soaked Friday night. With the Wolves victory, the 2017 conference title will be shared by Anderson, Milford and West Clermont. In addition, all three squads are expected to earn a berth when the 2017 playoff field is revealed on Sunday afternoon.


Trailing by seven with just over 1:30 to play, the Eagles (8-2, 6-1 ECC) forced a West Clermont punt near midfield. Needing to score to force overtime, senior Dax Creager made the play of the night, blocking the Wolves’ punt, scooping it and rumbling all the way to the six-yard field. Needing just six yards to tie the score, Milford was forced to fourth down when QB Blake King was hit and fumbled, sealing the win and playoff berth for West Clermont (7-3, 6-1 ECC).


The night started out great for Milford as touchdown runs by King at the 6:08 mark of the first quarter and 11:35 of the second pushed the Senior Night crowd into a frenzy as the Eagles took a 14-0 lead. The advantage didn’t last long as West Clermont scored 14 quick points to tie the game. First, Jacob Kilgore crashed into the end zone from two yards out shortly after King’s first score. When the Eagles regained possession, West Clermont forced a three-and-out, setting the stage for Gunner Johnson to block Milford’s punt and Joey Floccari to pick it up and race eight yards for the tying score.


West Clermont kept its momentum going on its next drive, going 78 yards in nine plays, capped by a Kilgore 10-yard run that pushed the visitors in front for the first time all night at 21-14. Just before the half, Milford evened the score when King found a streaking Cameron Kells in the back of the end zone for a 24-yard touchdown strike.


Turnovers and punts were the story of the third quarter as the rain continued to drench players, coaches and fans alike. West Clermont took the next scoring lead just over a minute into the fourth quarter when Austin Maham found the end zone from eight yards out. The Wolves lead lasted just 19 seconds though as King went deep on the first play, connecting with Jake Ayler on a 64-yard catch and run to knot the score with 10:27 to go.


The next two possessions saw Sam Pickett come up with a huge interception with the Wolves driving, only to have the visitors turns the tables two plays later when King was picked off by Austin Price. West Clermont took advantage on Kilgore’s third TD run, this one from four yards out with 3:19 remaining.


Milford had chances on its last two drives, but West Clermont came up with an interception and the game-clinching fumble that ended the Eagles’ comeback chances.


King led the Eagle offense with 163 yards passing and 50 yards rushing, along with four total touchdowns. Ayler was his favorite target with four catches for 81 yards. West Clermont, which rushed for 367 yards, while passing for just 17, got 207 yards on the ground from Maham.


Click here for the final Milford-West Clermont game stats.


Milford will now await its playoff match-up, its first since 1986, when the OHSAA announces the pairings for first round game on Sunday afternoon.