FORT MITCHELL, Ky. – A pair of neighborhood rivals and undefeated teams squared off in Fort Mitchell at Edgar McNabb Field. The visiting Covington Catholic Colonels took no prisoners and dominated on the way to a 45-9 win over the hosting Beechwood Tigers.
“Our guys were ready. Obviously it’s a neighborhood rivalry, our guys grow up playing with these guys and everything else so they came out pumped for this game,” said CovCath coach Eddie Eviston.
Colonel quarterback A.J. Mayer used a variety of offensive weapons to help Covington Catholic put the running clock into effect late in the second quarter. Mayer was spectacular, going 14-for-16 for 228 yards and three touchdowns.
The Colonels defense held the Beechwood offense to just eight first downs.
Covington Catholic got on the board first with a 29-yard field goal by Grant Dyer on its opening drive.
Beechwood was not so fortunate on its first possession. The Colonels defense set the tone on Beechwood’s second play from scrimmage when Brayden Burch was intercepted by Covington Catholic’s Adam Schneider, who returned the pick 26 yards to the house.
With a 10-0 cushion, it become the A.J. Mayer Show. The Miami University commit threw three touchdowns to three different receivers in the first half.
“We have so many tall receivers and our offensive line has played really well,” Mayer said after the game. “As a quarterback, it's awesome having tall receivers because you can throw it up and let them go get it."
Mayer took advantage of his tall receivers and a short field after a poor Beechwood punt. Starting on his own 32-yard line, Mayer engineered a three-play drive. He threw a 24-yard pass to his younger brother Michael followed by an 8-yard touchdown pass into the back of the end zone to Jack Coldiron.
Just before the end of the first quarter, Mayer threw a pass over the middle to a streaking Sam Schuh. Schuh raced 50 yards into the end zone, making the score 24-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Casey McGinness grinded out a long drive midway through the second quarter. The senior running back capped the possession with a 3-yard plunge for the first of a pair of rushing touchdowns. McGinness gained 131 yards on 19 carries.
Mayer’s third touchdown pass had the look of a play made popular by former Florida quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow. Mayer faked the quarterback draw play, stopped, backed up a couple of steps and lofted a strike to tight end Kameron Butler for a 22-yard touchdown play.
Beechwood avoided a shutout with a 39-yard field goal late in the third quarter by Daniel Mescher.
Josh Derry scored the Tigers' only touchdown on a 49-yard run with 6:33 remaining in the game.
Eviston was happy with his team improving to 5-0 on the season and also knows there is still a lot of work ahead for his team.
“Our guys are taking it one day at a time and that’s what I love about this team,” said the second year Colonels head coach. “We’ll go to work tomorrow on Columbus de Sales and we’ll have a tough test next week.”
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Covington Catholic 24-14-0-7 – 45
Beechwood 0-0-3-6 – 9
C – Dyer 29-yard FG
C – Schneider 26-yard interception return for a TD (Gronotte kick)
C – Coldiron 8-yard TD catch from Mayer (Gronotte kick).
C – Schuh 50-yard TD catch from Mayer (Gronotte kick).
C – McGinness 3-yard TD run (Gronotte kick).
C – Butler 22-yard TD catch from Mayer (Gronotte kick).
B – Mescher 29-yard FG
C – McGinness 98-yard TD run (Gronotte kick).
B – Derry 49-yard TD run (kick blocked)
RECORDS: Covington Catholic (5-0); Beechwood (3-1)
UP NEXT: Covington Catholic @ St. Frances de Sales (3-1); Beechwood vs. Holy Cross (0-5)