November 6th, 2011

Stewart-Hamilton Connection Leads Braves

Chris Jung

Senior Writer

Stewart-Hamilton Connection Leads Braves
photo by Chris Jung

St. Edward defeats St. Bernard 20-14 in Toy Bowl win's 2011 coverage of the Catholic School Athletic Association (CSAA) Toy Bowl games is sponsored and brought to you by Publishers Press.

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Following a disappointing 30-0 loss in the 5th & 6th grade Class A Toy Bowl last year against St. Mary, an undefeated St. Edward squad earned redemption on Saturday morning and got back into the business of winning with a 20-14 defeat of St. Bernard at St. Xavier High School.

Braves quarterback Zack Stewart hooked up with wide receiver Ryan Hamilton for a pair of second-quarter touchdown receptions to lead the offense and St. Edward fended off a last-chance possession by the Wildcats with 1:40 remaining to secure the six-point victory.

St. Bernard actually took control of the contest early on and put together a near-six minute drive to open the game, which was capped by the Wildcats' Trey Sweeney and his 1-yard QB sneak that gave St. Bernard a 6-0 lead.

The impressive drive featured four first downs and a key 4th down conversion, which was also picked up on a Sweeney keeper.

But the Braves would quickly answer when a 27-yard run by the aforementioned Hamilton, on a crucial 3rd down attempt, set up a six-yard touchdown run by Mark Bohn to tie the score at 6-6.

After forcing a St. Bernard punt midway through the second quarter, St. Edward took its first lead of the game when Stewart found Hamilton for a 13-yard touchdown pass on a 4th down attempt with 2:47 to go before halftime.

On the ensuing kickoff, the Wildcats were unable to control the ball on the return and the Braves proceeded to recover the ball at Bernard’s 31-yard line.

Taking advantage of the turnover, St. Edward got a 17-yard run by Bohn down to the two-yard line and a two-yard touchdown from Stewart to Hamilton, the duo's second hookup of the game and quarter, which gave the Braves a commanding 20-6 lead with just 28.6 seconds remaining until halftime.

The teams traded a flurry of turnovers in the third quarter, which began when Hamilton was stripped by St. Bernard at the goal line while attempting to put his team up by 20 points. That was followed, however, by a Trey Ruckriegel fumble recovery for St. Edward, which was immediately followed by a Clay Fitzhugh interception for St. Patrick, resulting in back-to-back-to-back miscues.

The Braves maintained its 14-point lead until 5:02 to go in game, when Sweeney hit Aaron Abend for a 38-yard pass, which would set up Sweeney to Abend for a 6-yard TD reception that Abend bobbled and caught while falling in the back of the end zone.

With the two-point kick attempt good, St. Bernard managed to pull within 20-14.

St. Edward turned the ball over on downs with 1:40 to go, giving St. Bernard one last shot, but the Wildcats threw four incomplete passes during a desperate last chance drive and the Braves were able to kneel on the ball to end the game after the Bernard turnover on downs.

The Wildcats' Luke Askin had a fumble recovery for St. Bernard in the losing effort.

St. Edward, which also won the league, finishes the season with a perfect 9-0 record; St. Bernard ends its year with seven wins.

Final statistics

  • Total yards: St. Edward (186); St. Bernard (148)
  • First downs: St. Edward (7); St. Bernard (9)
  • Rushing yards-carries: St. Edward (140-33); St. Bernard (84-27)
  • Completions-Attempts-INTs: St. Edward (3-7-1); St. Bernard (4-13-0)
  • Passing yards: St. Edward (46); St. Bernard (64)
  • Fumbles-lost: St. Edward (3-3); St. Bernard (3-3)
  • Penalties-yards: St. Edward (4-25); St. Bernard (1-5)
  • Punts: St. Edward (1); St. Bernard (0)

Scoring plays

1st Quarter

  • 2:14 Trey Sweeney (Bernard) 1-yard touchdown run (missed kick); 6-0

2nd Quarter

  • 7:55 Mark Bohn (Edward) 6-yard touchdown run (missed kick); 6-6
  • 2:47 Ryan Hamilton (Edward) 13-yard touchdown catch from Zack Stewart (Bryce Elmore kick good); 14-6
  • 0:28 Ryan Hamilton (Edward) 2-yard touchdown catch from Stewart (missed kick); 20-6

3rd Quarter

  • No scoring

4th Quarter

  • 4:23 Aaron Abend 6-yard touchdown pass from Trey Sweeney (kick good); 20-14

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