LEETONIA, Ohio (WKBN) – The Leetonia Bears dominated in their home opener, and ironically their first game of the season. They would jump out to a 38-0 halftime advantage on way to a lop-sided 52-16 win over the East Palestine Bulldogs.
“I’m just happy we had a chance to play football. After sitting for three weeks, it’s all about just having a chance to play. We have a lot of things to clean up, but we played hard every down. That’s the key in high school football,” Bears coach Paul Hulea said.
The combination of running backs Hayden Cibula, Jake McCool, and quarterback Joe Guido proved to be too much for the Bulldogs as the Bears racked up 361 rushing yards in the game. The Bear’s defense also came to play as they held the Bulldogs to just 127 total yards in the game.
“It feels great! Coming out here which is pretty much our home opener, it feels amazing,” Bears senior Mike Miller stated. “I thought it would be the same old grass field, but this stuff is amazing. I feel faster, I think everybody does.”
The Bears scored on their first seven possessions of the game with their first touchdown coming just two plays into the contest when Guido raced in from 17-yards out. He would account for 115 yards and two touchdowns on the night.
Hayden Cibula scored his first of three touchdowns in the game three minutes later with an 8-yard run. He would tally 107 yards in the game.
McCool would make it 24-0 in favor of the Bears early in the second quarter on a 14-yard romp. McCool rushed for 110 yards and two touchdowns in the game.
Guido would add a 34-yard run around the right end, and Cibula would score on a 5-yard run with just 27-seconds remaining before halftime to stake the Bears to their 38-0 halftime advantage.
The Bears added two more touchdowns to start the second half as Cibula ran in from 26-yards out before McCool added the Bear’s final score on the last play of the third quarter. That gave the Bears a 52-0 advantage.
The Bulldogs kept fighting as Tyler Bistarkey raced around the left end for a 63-yard touchdown, and quarterback Owen Jurjavcic hit Ryan Rosen on an 18-yards touchdown pass late in the game to make it the final 52-16 score.
“We have seventeen of you still standing. If you’re willing to play this game that we love, the greatest game out there, we are willing to coach our butts off and get better. And enjoy the game we love,” Foster told his team after the game.
The Bears will host United next Friday when they are set to dedicate their new turf field. East Palestine will host the Wellsville Tigers next Friday.
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