Lakers edge Rebels for D-VI, Region 21 first-round playoff win

Oct. 28—ANDOVER — Pymatuning Valley took on Columbiana Crestview in a Division VI, Region 21 opener on Friday night.

A windy night in PV made it difficult for both teams to get anything going through the air, resulting in a war on the ground where the Lakers edged the visitors 16-14.

At 8-3, PV advanced to the second round and will play at Mogadore in a second-round matchup. Mogadore blanked LaBrae 28-0 for its first-round game.

Ty Vickery scored two, second-half touchdowns, including a 5-yard run in the fourth quarter during the win. He ended up with 110 yards on 22 carries.

The game was scoreless at halftime. In the third quarter, Crestview struck first with a 5 yard TD pass by Jameson English to Joey Carr.

The Lakers responded when Vickery scored on a 1-yard run. PV also converted both 2-point conversions which proved to be the difference.

Quarterback Ryan Croston connected with wide receiver Jayce Fulkman on a 28-yard reception to put them in the red zone to set up Vickery's TD. Fulkman was involved again as he was given a jet sweep to convert the 2-point attempt.

Both sides were gassed from playing some violent smash mouth football heading into the fourtth quarter, but Crestview's Max Hawkins did not give up. He single handedly marched down the field to punch in a 1-yard touchdown and take the lead.

With the final minutes approaching and PV holding onto the lead, they mixed it up. Vickery finished the drive off with a 5-yard touchdown, followed by a 2 point attempt that was converted.

With three minutes to go, Crestview stuck to the run and attempted to mix in some QB runs along with powering forward with Hawkins. After three plays with minimal gain, the Rebel's had 1 final down to convert and keep their season alive. Hawkins was the go to man all night, and PV knew it. A run up the middle was sniffed out by the quick Lakers defensive line and they forced a turnover on downs with 1:08 remaining to advance to the second round, and end Credtview's playoff hopes.

"The kids really dug down deep the last six and a half minutes," PV head coach Neal Croston said. "Great team effort."