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WRITER: Joel Whetzel

Gulu's hat trick sends Hubbard past Lakeview

HUBBARD — In what was likely his final home game at Hubbard High School, Jacob Gulu made sure to deliver. Gulu nearly scored a hat trick in the first half and made sure to finish the job in the second, as Hubbard cruised to a 6-0 win over Lakeview in the opening round of the 2021 postseason. It marked a breakthrough for the Eagles (8-7), who had been eliminated in the first round the past couple of ...

Liberty’s upset bid falls short

LIBERTY — On the verge of a breakthrough victory that potentially could have sealed a playoff berth, Liberty fell victim to one final, fatal miscue. Tied at 34 and following a goal line stand, the Leopards had driven from their own 1-yard-line to the LaBrae 12 with 40 seconds to go. Out of a timeout, quarterback D.C. Ferrell scrambled out to his right with two Viking defenders — Stephen Hemberger and ...

Big test: Playoff points up for grabs in Fitch, Boardman tilt

BOARDMAN — With two weeks left in the regular season, playoff points are at a premium right now and that’s especially true for Boardman and Austintown Fitch ahead of tonight’s matchup, as each team is jostling for postseason positioning in their respective divisions. Both teams enter the contest at 4-3 and in search of some late-season momentum. The Falcons sit at eighth in the Division II, Region 5 ...

Leading the way: Youngstown State’s Covington, Akuchie set for 5th, final seasons

YOUNGSTOWN — The clock is ticking, and Garrett Covington and Michael Akuchie know it. Youngstown State’s fifth-year seniors are entering their final season with the Penguins, having been granted an extra year of eligibility by the NCAA due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As such, the sense of urgency has never been higher, Covington says. “Every day I come in here, it gets a little bit more sad because ...

Column: Some thoughts during YSU’s midseason bye

YOUNGSTOWN — Without a doubt, it’s been an up-and-down season for Youngstown State so far. The Penguins sit at 2-3 overall and 1-2 in Missouri Valley Football Conference play, and are a disastrous second half against Western Illinois away from being above .500 instead. On the other hand, both wins are over teams currently in the FCS Top 25 — No. 18 Incarnate Word (who was receiving votes at the time of ...

Crenshaw honored for record day

YOUNGSTOWN — For his record-setting performance against Missouri State, Youngstown State quarterback Demeatric Crenshaw earned both Missouri Valley Football Conference and Stats Perform honors. The redshirt freshman ran for 195 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries, setting the YSU mark for most rushing yards by a quarterback in a single game. His performance helped lead the Penguins to a 41-33 upset of the ...

Penguins upset No. 15 Missouri State, 41-33

YOUNGSTOWN — This time, Youngstown State had a counterpunch. Two weeks removed from surrendering a 28-point lead in a narrow home loss to Western Illinois, the Penguins made sure to finish the job and deliver a signature win for head coach Doug Phillips. Fueled by four turnovers and a monstrous day on the ground, YSU upset the No. 15 Missouri State Bears on a soggy Saturday afternoon during homecoming at ...

VASJ runs by Ursuline, 46-28

YOUNGSTOWN — Trouble stopping the run proved costly for Ursuline, as the Irish fell to Villa Angela-St. Joseph 46-28 Friday night at Stambaugh Stadium in a game that was scheduled on Wednesday. The Irish (4-3) were gashed for 475 yards in the loss, which was a stark turnaround from the 47-21 victory UHS took over VASJ in last year’s postseason. “We have to continue to get better. Our message ...

Rolling with the punches: Ursuline adjusts to last-minute game change

YOUNGSTOWN — Midway through the week, Ursuline was gearing up to play Boardman in a battle of two of the area’s better programs. Until it wasn’t. On Wednesday morning, Boardman had to cancel the matchup, sending Ursuline (4-2) scrambling for a new opponent for the second time this season. The Irish’s matchup with Chaney on Sept. 24 was canceled, but UHS couldn’t find a new opponent. Within a ...

YSU Scouting Report: Week 6

YOUNGSTOWN — Teams seemingly headed in opposite directions are set to collide Saturday at Stambaugh Stadium, as Youngstown State returns home to face the Missouri State Bears. YSU comes in at 1-3 and has experienced a tough last six quarters of football. The Penguins led Western Illinois 35-7 in the second quarter two weeks ago, but have been outscored by opponents 65-7 since. Missouri State, meanwhile, ...