Saturday, November 10, 2001 – HUBER HEIGHTS
The Buccs were 16 seconds away from forcing overtime in the second round of the playoffs. Southeastern completed a rare pass in the corner of the end zone in tight coverage to steal a 27-21 victory over the Buccs with 16 seconds to go in the game.
In a game that was dominated by the Buccs early, the Trojans advance to the next round against Marion Local. The Buccs jumped out to an early 21-0 lead by the end of the first quarter. Josh Burelison started things off with a touchdown run from 1-yard out to complete a 59-yard drive on the Buccs’ first drive. Jon Sampson blocked a Trojan punt and Boomer Schmidt made the score 14-0 on an 11-yard run. The Bucc defense stopped the Trojans on their second drive which set up a Dusty Blythe pass to Mike Molesky to the Trojan 7. Burelison put the Buccs up 21-0 before Southeastern was even into the flow of the game.
Southeastern came out on their next drive and set the tone for the rest of the game. Brian Cooper, a 6 foot 5 inch 250 pound fullback began to wear down the Bucc defense. Southeastern used straight-up smash-mouth football to take control of the game. They narrowed the Buccs lead to 21-14 by halftime behind the powerful legs of Cooper.
Neither team scored in the third which set up the heartbreaking fourth period. Southeastern tied the score at 21 with about 4 minutes to go. Covington drove to the Trojan 30 but was unable to convert on a fourth and five with 1:50 left in the game. Southeastern drove down the field and scored the final points with 16 seconds left in the game to advance to the next round of the playoffs.
Buccs Had A Great Season
The Buccs finish the season at 11-1 and owners of Back-to Back Cross County Conference titles. They have had a dominating season which will rank them among the best in Buccaneer history.
There were many great moments and accomplishments that the 2001 Buccaneers can be proud of and build on for the future. These 34 players and 4 coaches have solidified the tradition of Bucc Football and built a foundation for teams to follow.
The 2001 Buccs had two 1,000 yard rushers in Josh Burelison and Boomer Schmidt. The offensive line was a question mark coming into the season but they were every bit as good as the 2000 offensive line. Dusty Blythe continued to play big in the big game and played the quarterback position as well as it has been played since Matt Pond in ’85. Blythe was dependable throughout his career. He rarely mishandled a snap and when called upon to carry the team by throwing the ball, he came through when it counted.
Bucc Football is known for defense and the 2001 team didn’t disappoint. They were dominating all year long. They held a powerful Bethel offense to 14 points and their 1,600 yard rusher to 14 yards. They shut down the state’s all-time leading rusher, Jason Bainum last week in one of the most impressive defensive performances in recent memory.
The coaching staff has built a program that is on the rise. They have brought back a sense of tradition and excitement to Buccs Football. Coach Peacock and his staff should be commended for the dedication and compassion they have to their players and the football program.
Thanks For The Memories
Seniors Josh Burelison, Dusty Blythe, Alex Hague, Mike Molesky, B.J. Owens, Mike Stephen, Clint Mohler and John Starry have left a legacy for future Buccaneer players to follow. I throw in John Starry because he has been with the other 7 seniors the entire way and he will be with them for the rest of their lives.
These eight players finish their Buccaneer careers a phenomenal 23 and 2 the last two years. They are also Back-to-Back CCC Champions and owners of two unbeaten regular seasons. They have been to the State Playoffs three years in a row, which no other Buccaneer players have done in the past.
Along the way they have left some memories for Bucc fans and more importantly, themselves. They were 20-0 in the regular season the past two years. Along the way they have beaten 8 playoff teams, Bethel three times, Ansonia twice, Cedarville, Anna, and Williamsburg. Who can forget the dominating performance against Williamsburg who owns the states all-time leading rusher? Two losses in two years against great football teams does not diminish their accomplishments.
Their greatest accomplishment wasn’t in games won or lost. It was the way they honored John Starry. They made sure John Starry wouldn’t be forgotten. Each game John was with them. His number 65 was painted on the home field and a sticker placed on their helmets. They honored him by the way they conduct themselves on the field and in the community.
The support for the Covington has been strong over the years and this year was no exception. Throughout the season there have been more Covington fans at away games than the home team’s fans. At home games there was barely standing room around the fence.
Tonight as the Buccs prepared to battle Southeastern, hundreds of Bucc fans showed their support with a tailgate party that started a few hours before the game. Many of the Bucc Boosters used their own money to finance food and refreshments and invited those from the community to join in the party. The setting was something you rarely see at a high school football game. Ben brought his buss that has been remodeled to support such functions.
The Bucc Boosters also held a chicken diner prior to the Buccs’ scrimmage against Versailles earlier in the year. Profit generated from the fundraiser went to purchase weight equipment for the Covington Sports Program.
Thanks to community support like this, the Buccs will always be competitive.