The Butler Bulldogs relied on their stifling defense and did just enough offensively to beat visiting Rocky River 16-0 Friday night. It was the teams’ Southwestern 4A conference opener.
Butler’s Jamal Worthy and Nijere Peoples had touchdown runs of 6 and 7 yards respectively while Bulldogs kicker Alex Harrell booted a 30-yard field goal for the game’s other points. Butler’ defense was steller, holding the Ravens to 69 yards of total offense.
Despite Butler’s defensive dominance, the game wasn’t decided until late in the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored nine points to seal the win.
The Bulldogs took the opening kickoff and marched 70 yards in nine plays, mainly on the ground, to go up 7-0. Butler running back Worthy carried the final 6 yards for the score.
While the Rocky River offense struggled, the Ravens’ defense held a potent Butler offense to just one touchdown until midway through the fourth quarter.
Records: Rocky River (0-5, 0-1) Butler (3-1, 1-0)
3 who mattered
Nijere Peoples (Butler): The running back led all rushers with 97 yards on 22 carries and one touchdown.
Damel Hickman (Butler): The defensive back picked off a Rocky River pass for an interception and the game’s only turnover.
Christian Peters (Butler): The Bulldogs’ illusive scrambling quarterback prevented five sure Rocky River sacks while completing 10-of-17 passes for 132 yards.
▪ The Rocky River offense was stymied in the first half with only two first downs and 50 yards. For the game, the Butler defense held the Ravens to only 69 yards of offense and only three first downs.
▪ The Ravens have lost their five games by an average of just six points each.
What’s next: Rocky River hosts Myers Park on Thursday. Butler closes out a two-game homestand Thursday against Porter Ridge.