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NILES OH- since 2015, the Jefferson Area Falcons have not won a game against their NE8 rival Niles McKinley Red Dragons.  With a great three and one start to the season however, would that change or would Niles bounce back after their tough loss to Lakeview last week and keep their playoff hopes alive?


The game started in favor of the Red Dragons as star receiver Nathan Coots caught an 8-yard pass from Anthony Budak making it 7-0 early.  Jefferson bounced right back with just 54 seconds to go in the first as Luke Funtash used his feet to push through the line, getting a one-yard touchdown tying it up at seven all. 


Jefferson made a change in this game where they put sophomore quarterback Kaige Boczar in and they moved the talented senior Grant Hitchcock to wide receiver.  The slant route worked as Hitchcock went 76-yards to the endzone.  Followed by a Jenson Varosh field goal it was now 17-7.  The Red Dragons didn’t go away quietly however as Budak turned his body and found a wide open Roberto Merlo in the back of the endzone making it 17-14 going into the half.  


However there would be no comeback as the second half was all Falcons winning by the final score of 31-14, improving to four and one of the season and will host Hubbard  Meanwhile, Niles falls to two and three and will travel to face the Poland Bulldogs. 


After the game, YSNs Ian O’Brien caught up with coach Brandon Hanna to talk about the big victory and what to expect against Hubbard. 


*contributed by YSNs Ian O’Brien*



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