Friday, September 21, 2012

    Steubenville Catholic Central 28, New Cumberland (WV) Oak Glen 6   

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 WRAP-UP from, published 9/29/2012

PREVIEW from, published 9/21/2012


Written by Mario Saggio

Steubenville Catholic Central takes to the road for the second week in a row, venturing to New Cumberland for a battle of 2-2 teams when they face the Golden Bears of Oak Glen.

The Crusaders are coming off of an impressive 49-7 win at Toronto, while the Bears will be looking to rebound from a 48-12 loss at John Marshall. Friday night’s meeting will be the third ever between the two schools. Oak Glen has won the previous two contests, including a 35-27 conquest at Harding Stadium last year.

Steve Daley’s Catholic Central offense has been lighting up the scoreboard and filling the air with footballs through the season’s first four weeks. Central ranks second in team passing in Ohio Division VI, while quarterback Brenton Colabella is the leader in individual passing.

The 6-2, 185-pound junior has completed 68 of 110 attempts for 1,160 yards. He has thrown 14 touchdowns, while being intercepted only twice.

Central has four players among the top 13 receivers in Division VI, including 6-4, 175-pound senior Zach Herrington, who ranks second in the state with 391 yards, including five touchdowns on 19 catches.

Classmate Kyle Laukert (5-10, 150) ranks fifth with 280 yards. His 14 receptions include four that have gone for scores. Ryan Fletcher checks in at eighth with 232 yards and two touchdowns on 13 receptions. The 6-0, 175-pound junior has also rushed three times for 33 yards and a score.

Senior Michael Carapellotti (5-10, 160) has accounted for 147 yards and two touchdowns among his 14 catches.

The Crusader running game has been paced by senior speedster Doug Maslowski (5-10, 195), who has rushed for 273 yards and three scores on 47 attempts.

Sophomore fullback Stone Romano (5-11, 185) has provided a solid inside compliment with 68 yards on 11 carries, while junior Luke Potenzini (6-3, 215) has added versatility at both tight end and fullback in recent weeks.

Defensively, Central has been much more aggressive and created more turnovers than in recent years, notching 12 takeaways so far this season.

Sophomore linebacker Chris Murphy (5-11, 150) leads in takeaways with four fumble recoveries, one of which he returned for a touchdown last week. Among his 17 stops, he also has recorded two sacks and two tackles for lost yardage.

Romano is second on the team in tackles with 22, including two sacks, a fumble recovery and one tackle for lost yardage. Laukert has tallied 12 stops, including one for negative yardage and a team-leading two interceptions. Senior Kevin Zapolnik has garnered 11 tackles, with four of those behind the line of scrimmage.

In the secondary, 5-10, 160-pound junior Aleks Porreca leads the team in tackles with 25, including six behind the line of scrimmage, as well as one interception. Fletcher is next in line with 21 stops, an interception, a fumble recovery, and one tackle for negative yardage.

5-10, 160-pound junior Khalil Jones has notched 20 tackles and an interception at cornerback. Herrington has added 11 tackles and an interception at safety.

Along the defensive front, 5-8, 205-pound junior Jake McCann leads with 13 tackles (one for negative yardage), while 5-11, 200-pound junior Marty Engle has recorded 10 tackles, with three coming behind the line of scrimmage.

On special teams, Romano has converted eight of nine extra points, with Maslowski making five of his seven attempts. Colabella is averaging nearly 33 yards on 12 punts.

Oak Glen, under first-year coach Ian Whittington, will be celebrating Homecoming at their new stadium, while looking to halt a two-game losing streak. The Golden Bears opened the season with wins over Edison (37-28) and Wellsville (45-0) before falling to Indian Creek (41-9) and John Marshall last Friday.

Versatile junior Bub Haddox quarterbacks the Golden Bear offense, having completed 37 of 64 passes for 324 yards and one touchdown. He has also rushed for 368 yards.

Zack Staley, a 235-pound fullback, injured his shoulder last Friday and his status is uncertain for this week. If he can’t go, senior tailback Tyler Steed will look to pick up the slack. After missing the first two games, he led Oak Glen with 78 yards rushing last week.

Junior David Campbell has crossed the goal line twice this season and put forth a 146-yard effort against Wellsville in week two.

Senior Trey Smith has been a solid contributor, as well, including a 122-yard, one-touchdown effort in the victory over Wellsville.

When Oak Glen airs it out, Haddox has several targets from which to choose. Steed hauled in six passes for 60 yards last week, while senior Cody Howell was the recipient of a 40-yard scoring strike.

Seniors Josh Weltner, Clayton Flowers and tight end Justin Stivason have all been targeted multiple times through the first four games.

The offensive front boasts size, averaging 271 pounds, and experience (five seniors), led by Preston Murray. The 6-1, 265-pound right tackle is a four-way starter and finished third as a junior in voting for the Hunt Award, given to the best lineman in the state of West Virginia.

Logan Curtis shifted to center in the preseason, after starting eight games at tackle as a junior. Jeff Stivason lines up at right guard, while guard Nathan Wright and 6-8, 370-pound tackle Richie Davis man the left side of the line.

The defense boasts six returning starters from last year, including the front four of Murray, Jeff Stivason, Staley and senior Cole Holloway.

Justin Stivason and fellow senior Nation Whittington, the head coach’s younger brother, line up at inside linebacker. Steed and Howell will be the outside backers.

Smith, Weltner and Haddox rotate at cornerback, while Flowers returns for his third year as starting safety.

Special teams are another strong point, as Weltner has been consistent both punting and placekicking, including nailing a 43-yard field goal vs. Indian Creek, while sophomore Micah Swiger broke an 85-yard punt return for a score last week.

Kickoff for Friday night’s game is 7:00.


Written by Mario Saggio

Steubenville Catholic Central’s defense bottled up Oak Glen’s attack, while a balanced Crusader offense found the end zone often enough for Steve Daley’s squad to post a 28-6 road win against the Golden Bears.

The visiting Crusaders posted two touchdowns within 30 seconds in the waning minutes to pull away in what had been a tight defensive battle played in a steady rain.

Two plays after hauling in a five-yard scoring toss that put his team up by two scores, Central’s Zach Herrington chased down the Oak Glen quarterback, stripping him of the ball, and rambling 39 yards to the end zone with the loose pigskin.

Herrington helped give Central possession for his first touchdown by recording a fourth-down sack at the Oak Glen 20-yard line.

The first four possessions of the game resulted in punts, the last of those by Oak Glen setting up Central on their own 47-yard line. Three plays later, Doug Maslowski burst over the left side of the line, broke a tackle and outran the Golden Bear defense for a 46-yard touchdown. Stone Romano’s PAT upped the lead to 7-0 with 3:50 to play in the opening stanza.

After an exchange of punts, Oak Glen moved from their own 42 to the Crusader 18 before Ryan Fletcher snuffed the drive with an interception in the back of the end zone.

Quarterback Brenton Colabella connected several times with Herrington to move the Crusaders into Oak Glen territory before the Golden Bear defense stiffened and Central turned the ball over on downs at the 34-yard line.

The hosts got on the board just three plays after intermission when Tyler Steed rumbled 49 yards off the right side for a Golden Bear touchdown. The ensuing conversion kick was off the mark, leaving Oak Glen trailing 7-6.

Catholic Central answered with an 11-play, 63-yard drive that saw Michael Carapellotti bring down Colabella’s throw in the left corner of the end zone for a 14-yard score. Maslowski, who carried several times and added a 30-yard reception on the drive, added the extra point that put Central ahead 14-6 with 7:20 left in the third quarter.

Neither team could muster much offense until the Crusaders marched from their own 14 to the Oak Glen 25-yard line before the Golden Bear defense came up with a huge fourth-and-one stop.

Faced with a fourth-and-nine at their own 30, the hosts opted to try for the first down, setting the stage for the first of Herrington’s late-game heroics.

Central’s defense limited the hosts to 167 yards total offense, while forcing two turnovers and recording four sacks. Offensively, the Crusaders put forth their most balanced effort of the campaign, throwing for 132 yards and registering 115 on the ground.

Colabella completed 12 of his 26 throws, hitting Herrington four times for 40 yards. Fletcher caught three passes for 14 yards, Maslowski two for 29, Kyle Laukert one for 29, Carapellotti one for 14, and Khalil Jones one for six.

Maslowski topped the century mark, rushing 13 times for 101 yards, while Romano added 15 yards on six carries.

Chase Hartley, filling in for regular signal-caller Bub Haddox, was nine-of-16 for 61 yards passing. Zack Staley caught a team- high three passes for 35 yards.

Steed paced the Oak Glen ground game with 73 yards on 14 carries.

Oak Glen falls to 2-3 on the season and will try to bounce back at Hancock County Rival Weir High on Friday night. Central improves to 3-2 and will host Conotton Valley Saturday night while celebrating Homecoming.

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