BEAVER — Gavin Hart had a good running start on Friday night, Dylan Seison scored twice within two-and-a-half third-quarter minutes on big plays, and the Notre Dame Titans hung on for dear life — capturing a 35-28 Southern Ohio Conference Division I football victory over the host Eastern Eagles.
The Titans, despite allowing three Dylan Morton touchdown passes including two for at least 65 yards, took a 35-7 lead by late in the third quarter —and withstood the Eagles’ furious fourth-quarter comeback bid, which got them to within 35-28.
Notre Dame won its second consecutive game, and wrapped up its rigorous regular-season road schedule for the year — improving to an even 4-4.
The Titans played their sixth road game in eight weeks, and defeated two previously-undefeated clubs within the SOC I.
Notre Dame defeated previously-undefeated and visiting Green 29-21 two weeks ago.
Both Notre Dame and Eastern are now 2-1 in the division, as the Eagles opened the season 0-for-5 in the non-conference —but wins over East (24-8) and at Symmes Valley (27-20) revived them regarding the league championship chase.
However, they suffered a seven-point home loss this time.
Notre Dame junior Gavin Hart had a hat trick of touchdowns and 178 yards on 24 carries, as his 20-yard run got the Titans on the board — only two minutes and three seconds into the game.
The Eagles answered with a 66-yard touchdown strike from quarterback Dylan Morton to Tucker Leist, as Morton made the first of his four extra-point kicks —giving Eastern its only edge with one minute and 40 seconds to play in the first quarter.
But Hart had two touchdowns within a dozen minutes of each other, a 53-yard sprint and a 1-yard dive, as his two-point conversion run put the Titans ahead for good at 14-7.
Notre Dame’s 21 third-period points made it 35-7, as Coleman Shaffer kicked three extra points —after Hart had his one-yard run, Dylan Seison caught a 42-yard pass from Wyatt Webb, and Seison returned a fumble recovery for 30 yards.
From there, within five minutes and seven seconds of each other in the fourth frame, Morton and Teaghan Werner were good for 65 and 16-yard scoring connections —as Morton made three more extra points in the period.
The Eagles got one more touchdown late in the fourth for the 35-28 deficit, but got no closer.
The Titans outrushed Eastern in both plays (41-19) and yards (223-60), but Morton burned ND with his aerial attack —throwing for 290 yards on 16-of-25 passing.
However, the Eagles turned the ball over four times with two lost fumbles and two interceptions, and committed 10 penalties for 77 yards.
Webb was 3-of-8 for 98 yards, with Seison catching two passes for 80 yards — and Carter Campbell one for 18.
The Titans return home, and return to SOC I action, on Friday night against Symmes Valley.
* * *
Notre Dame 6 8 21 0 —35
Eastern 7 0 0 21 —28
ND— Gavin Hart, 20-yard run (kick failed), 9:57, 1st (6-0 ND)
E— Tucker Leist, 66-yard pass from Dylan Morton (Dylan Morton kick), 1:40, 1st (7-6 E)
ND— Gavin Hart, 53-yard run (Gavin Hart run), 8:41, 2nd (14-7 E)
ND— Gavin Hart, 1-yard run (Coleman Shaffer kick), 8:38, 3rd (21-7 E)
ND— Dylan Seison, 42-yard pass from Wyatt Webb (Coleman Shaffer kick), 5:24, 3rd (28-7 E)
ND— Dylan Seison, 30-yard fumble recovery return (Coleman Shaffer kick), 2:54, 3rd (35-7 E)
E— Teaghan Werner, 65-yard pass from Dylan Morton (Dylan Morton kick), 10:21, 4th (35-14 E)
E— Teaghan Werner, 16-yard pass from Dylan Morton (Dylan Morton kick), 5:14, 4th (35-21 E)
E— touchdown and PAT information unavailable, 4th (35-28 E)
First downs 13 14
Scrimmage plays 51 44
Rushes-yards 41-223 19-60
Passing yards 98 290
Total yards 321 350
Cmp-Att-Int. 3-8-0 16-25-2
Fumbles-lost 2-0 2-2
Penalties-yards 5-22 10-77
Punts-Ave. 4-19.5 6-34.5
RUSHING — Notre Dame: Gavin Hart 24-178 3TD, Myles Phillips 7-11, Wyatt Webb 6-19, Dylan Seison 3-9, Levi Cassidy 1-6; Eastern: not available
PASSING —Notre Dame: Wyatt Webb 3-8-0-98 TD; Eastern: not available
RECEIVING —Notre Dame: Dylan Seison 2-80 TD, Carter Campbell 1-18; Eastern:not available
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