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The 2016 season is two games old, and the Nordonia High School football team has already played two high-octane contests.
After winning the opener in wild fashion 38-37, the Knights visited Bedford Sept. 2. This contest was another high-scoring affair. However, Nordonia came out on the losing end, 46-38.
Both teams accounted for big plays, but the Bearcats had the majority, especially when it counted. That was especially the case in the fourth quarter, when Bedford scored 12 points during the period to register the come-from-behind win.
Nordonia led 38-34 entering the fourth period and had Bedford pinned back on its two-yard line. However, the Bearcats turned the tables in dramatic fashion, as quarterback Arshaun Boone connected with Trenton Cloud on a 98-yard touchdown pass.
Despite the fact that the extra point attempt failed, Bedford held a 40-38 advantage with 8:31 left in the contest.
The Bearcats then put the game out of reach later in the stanza when Boone threw a 16-yard touchdown strike to Davion Johnson to close out the scoring.
The game was Nordonia's second straight non-conference contest to start the campaign. The Knights are now 1-1. They've yet to play a game in the National Conference of the Suburban League. With the win, Bedford improved to 2-0.
Both teams tallied a touchdown in the first quarter. Nordonia's score was the result of a 13-yard pass from quarterback Robby Levak to running back Tye Evans.
Things heated up in the second quarter, as the teams combined to score 31 points. Levak threw another pair of touchdown passes, one to wide receiver Alec Burkholder covering 14 yards and another to Evans covering 16 yards.
Bedford also scored a pair of touchdowns in the second period. However, Nordonia placekicker Trey Crockett booted a 30-yard field goal with 11 seconds left in the first half to give Nordonia a 24-21 edge at the intermission.
Running back Anthony Perrine reached the end zone twice in the third stanza for the Knights. First, he scampered three yards to pay dirt. Then the barrelled across the goal line from one yard out.
Bedord also tallied a pair of touchdowns. One of them was a big play, as Boone hit Jaylin Smith with an 89-yard touchdown pass. That would be the first of two scoring throws of over 80 yards on the night for Boone.
Bedford did a good job of bottling up Perrine, who managed 77 yards on 23 carries. Levak performed well through the air, completing 14-of-24 passes for 214 yards and three touchdowns.
Evans led the receiving corps with five catches for 90 yards and two touchdowns. Perrine also had four receptions for 63 yards.
Defensively, Nordonia did manage to force three turnovers, recording two interceptions and recovering the fumble. Intercepting passes for the Knights were Elijah Coleman and Brendan O'Donnell. Evans accounted for the fumble recovery.
Despite throwing the two interceptions, Boone completed 16-of-33 pass attempts for 441 yards and four touchdowns. Cloud caught five of those passes for 199 yards and two scores.
On Sept. 9, Nordonia will play its third straight non-conference game to open the season. The Knights will travel to Dover at 7 p.m.