Grove Wins Season Finale
By Sam Brauen Saturday, October 27, 2018 12:01:29 AM
(BLUFFTON) - Columbus Grove earned a share of the Northwest Conference championship with a 42-13 victory at Harmon Field to close out Bluffton’s 2018 football campaign. The Dogs led 35-0 at halftime and held Bluffton to -8 yards over the first two quarters.
Columbus Grove scored on their first five possessions of the game mixing a bruising running attack with an occasional pass. The duo of Brady Hauenstein and Garrett Nemire gashed the Pirate defense repeatedly and totaled 145 yards rushing and 3 touchdowns in just under 3 quarters of work. Quarterback Blake Reynolds completed an accurate 8/10 passes for 104 yards and 2 scores as well. Grove posted 259 first half yards and scored their final two scores in the second quarter off Pirate turnovers.
Bluffton scored the final two touchdowns of the evening fittingly by seniors Deandre Nassar and Logan Rhodes. Nassar caught a throwback screen from Nate Schaadt and zipped 18 yards to the end zone. Shortly after, Logan Rhodes rumbled 7 yards for the Pirates’ second score. While the night wasn't what Pirate fans envisioned, the two scoring plays were a nice way to end the season.
Tucker Neff led Bluffton in rushing with 32 yards on 5 carries. Malachi Pahl added 22 yards and Logan Rhodes 13. Deandre Nassar caught two passes for 17 yards and Andrew Wehrly hauled in a catch for 15 yards. Defensively, Baylor Garmatter made 10 tackles and Neff 7 including a one for loss.
Bluffton ends the season at 3-7 and 2-5 in NWC play. Seniors playing their final home game included Deandre Nassar, Chad Veit, Mason Ault, Logan Rhodes, Jason Althaus, Trey Shisler, Ben Theis and Brett Basinger.