Red Devils scorch Indian Creek
WINTERSVILLE — For the second straight week, St. Clairsville needed a little more than a quarter to fully get its bearings.
And, just like last week, once the Red Devils seized momentum, there was nothing the opposing team could do.
St. Clairsville scored on six consecutive offensive possessions to begin the game, and outside of a 24-play, 10-plus-minute scoring drive, allowed very little, en route to a 41-7 victory against Indian Creek Thursday evening at Kettlewell Memorial Stadium.
“We knew Indian Creek would come out with a lot of emotion, and after we drove and scored to begin the game, you can lose your own edge,” St. Clairsville head coach Brett McLean said. “We allowed that to happen, and they came right back and grabbed the momentum with an awesome drive.”
Indian Creek (1-4) clearly wanted to limit the number of times the Red Devils touched the ball.
“I thought our kids battled against a really good football team,” Indian Creek head coach Andrew Connor said. “I am proud of our kids’ efforts. Once things got away from us, St. Clairsville was able to take advantage of some things that got away from us. All I can ask is for my kids to go out and play hard, and I thought they did that throughout.”
And, for the better part of a quarter, the Redskins did just that thanks to a 23-play, 72-yard scoring drive that ate 10:26 off the game clock and featured three fourth-down conversions before senior Jeremy Brown plunged in from 2-yards out.
“There were little things we didn’t like that we need to clean up (defensively) because we can’t keep having slow starts or getting some success and then slowing down,” McLean said. “We need to find a way to have the throttle down right away because we can’t keep thinking we’re going to be able to come from behind.”
That drive clearly woke up the Red Devils, who are now 5-0 and will close out the pre-tournament portion of the regular season one week from tonight at Harrison Central.
St. Clairsville answered right back with a nine-play drive of its own, which was capped by rugged senior fullback Will Balgo going into the end zone from 3-yards out. Jake Bolyard’s second PAT kick made it 14-7.
Indian Creek was stuffed on downs on the ensuing possession, and nine plays later, the Red Devils sprung open the floodgates. On a beautifully designed and executed throw-back pass, senior quarterback Tyler Tonkovich found Carson Woodford all alone for an 11-yard touchdown with 17.5 seconds to go in the half.
The onslaught carried into the third quarter where the Red Devils scored three more times. The first came when Tonkovich found junior speedster Colin Oberdick in stride for a 67-yard touchdown.
Following an interception by Jaren Starks, St. C. handed the ball to junior Jacob Jordan, who weaved through the Redskins defense 39 yards untouched for the touchdown. Balgo punched in the 2-point conversion.
Jordan capped the scoring with a 2-yard drive, which was set up when junior Drew Sefsick found Oberdick for another big gainer in the passing game.
“We got a lot of kids involved (offensively),” McLean said. “We got a lot of kids a lot of different kind of touches and looks, which I believe will pay dividends down the road. And, a lot of that came in the heat of the action. Hopefully getting some new kids involved helps build some depth and keep kids excited.”
All told, the Red Devils outgained the Redskins, 389-125. Tonkovich, who got the scoring started with an 8-yard scamper, passed for 158 and spread the ball to six different receivers.
Junior Logan Shields turned in yet another solid performance on both sides of the ball. He caught a pass for 32 yards and rushed a team-best nine times for 44 yards.
St. Clairsville 41, Indian Creek 7
St. Clairsville 7 13 21 0 — 41
Indian Creek 0 7 0 0 — 7
StC — Tonkovich 8 run (Bolyard kick).
IC — Brown 2 run (Herald kick).
StC — Balgo 3 run (Bolyard kick).
StC — Woodford11 pass from Tonkovich (kick failed).
StC — Oberdick 67 pass from Tonkovich (kick failed).
StC — Jordan 39 run (Balgo run).
StC — Jordan 2 run (Otto kick).
RUSHING: St. Clairsville, 36-193-4td (Jordan, 5-39-2td; Tonkovich, 5-34-td; Balgo, 3-14-td; Shields, 9-44; Vickers, 2-7; Walz, 2-13; Walker, 4-47; Hoffman 1-(-5)). Indian Creek, 41-89-td (Schaefer, 15-53; Ferroni, 3-(-11); Brown, 12-32-td; Franke, 2-8; Powell, 3-6; Robinson, 4-2; Team, 2-(-1)).
PASSING: St. Clairsville, 9-13-192-2td (Tonkovich, 7-11-158-2td; Sefsick, 1-2-34). Indian Creek, 4-7-40-1x (All by Ferroni).
RECEIVING: St. Clairsville, 9-192-2td (Oberdick, 3-114-td; Shields, 1-32; Balgo, 2-10; Starks, 1-12; Woodford, 1-11-td; Jozwiak, 1-13); Indian Creek, 4-40 (All by Coleman).
FIRST DOWNS: St. Clairsville, 14; Indian Creek, 7.
FUMBLES/LOST: St. Clairsville, 0-0; Indian Creek, 2-0.
PENALTIES: St. Clairsville, 5-35; Indian Creek, 4-32.