In a Butler County battle of undefeated prep football teams, the Edgewood Cougars stayed perfect Friday night by defeating the visiting Badin Rams 35-10 at Kumler Field.
It was the third straight win in the series for Edgewood (3-0), which dropped Badin to 2-1.
Elijah Williams had 16 carries for 155 yards and three touchdowns for the Cougars, while Wade Phillips totaled 85 yards and a TD on 18 runs. Phillips also caught a 44-yard scoring pass from Corbin Craft.
“The key to this game was ball control,” Edgewood coach Scott Clemmons said. “If we could control the ball and keep their explosive offense off the field, then good things were going to happen. We used our two-headed attack in Elijah and Wade. Elijah’s pounding and Wade’s speed was our plan tonight. “
The Rams got outgained 385-209 in yardage. Zach Switzer was 9-of-17 for 128 yards and a touchdown (to Davon Starks).
“We knew coming in that we were facing a good quality opponent and wanted to see where we were at,” Badin coach Nick Yordy said. “We made the mistakes, and they are a good team. They stopped our offense, and we couldn’t stop them. They had a really good game plan and executed really well.”
For a second week in a row, the weather did not cooperate when heavy rain and steady wind came into play during the second half. But the Cougars had a firm grip at that point and wanted to finish the game with no threat of postponement similar to last week.
Edgewood, after its defense forced a three-and-out from the Rams, wasted no time finding the end zone when Craft hooked up with Phillips for an early 7-0 lead. A Badin offsides penalty the play before gave Craft and the Cougars the opportunity they needed.
The second period proved to be the difference in the ballgame as the stingy Cougar defense capitalized on two Badin fumbles that turned into 14 points for the home team.
The first fumble came late in the first quarter when Switzer lost control of the ball after a short scramble and Tanner Polisini scooped it up for the Cougars.
This miscue gave Edgewood a short field to work with, and Williams scampered into the end zone from 11 yards out. This gave the Cougars a 14-0 lead early in the second quarter.
The Rams, after an 11-play drive, got on the board with a 47-yard field goal by Luke VanSteenkiste midway through the second quarter. From there, it was all Cougars to end the first half. A steady dose of Williams and Phillips resulted in a six-play drive that ended with a 13-yard TD run by Phillips.
The Cougars defense, led by Polisini, caused another Ram fumble deep in their own territory that was capped off by a 2-yard run by Williams. That made it 28-3 at halftime.
“Our defense got after it tonight, playing fast and physical,” Clemmons said. “Our goal is never to give up more than 17 points, and that’s exactly what we did tonight.”
The teams traded TDs in the third quarter. Williams collected his third of the game on a 36-yard run, and Badin countered with a 47-yard catch-and-run from Switzer to Starks.
Williams and Phillips continue to be a powerful 1-2 punch in the Edgewood backfield.
“The offensive line did their job tonight giving us the holes that we needed, and we just ran through them,” Phillips said.
Added Williams, “We need to carry over our composure from a game like tonight moving forward into conference play. We need to keep our heads up and just keep playing like we are.”
The Cougars will begin Southwest Ohio Conference play at home against Northwest (it will be homecoming) next Friday, while the Rams kick off Greater Catholic League Coed Division competition at Fenwick.
E: Wade Phillips 44 pass from Corbin Craft (Dustin Turner kick)
E: Elijah Williams 11 run (Turner kick)
B: Luke VanSteenkiste 47 field goal
E: Phillips 13 run (Turner kick)
E: Williams 2 run (Turner kick)
E: Williams 36 run (Turner kick)
B: Davon Starks 47 pass from Zach Switzer (VanSteenkiste kick)