|Flyers punish Jays in Division VII State semis|
|Sunday, December 01, 2013 9:00 PM|
WAPAKONETA — St. John’s scored the first points of Saturday’s Division VII State semifinal against Marion Local just 1:47 into the contest.
It was all Marion Local after that as the Flyers scored the last 35 in a row in grabbing a 35-6 victory.
The Flyers (14-0) advance to take on fellow unbeaten Glouster Trimble in Saturday’s State finals at Massillon Paul Brown Tiger Stadium. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.
“We just ran into a very good football team. Hey are a very balanced offensive team with a great quarterback and a tough running game,” St. John’s coach Todd Schulte explained. “Their speed on defense was our biggest concern coming in and we just couldn’t deal with it. We got to our guys but couldn’t sustain blocks. Outside of one big plays, any holes we thought we had closed quickly with a lot of players in the way. I think it’s going to take a great effort to keep them from another title.”
St. John’s (9-5) started with the ball after the opening kickoff at the 10. Two plays later at the 18, senior tailback Tyler Jettinghoff (14 rushes, 111 yards) took a toss off left tackle and refused to go down, fighting through would-be tacklers and emerging toward the sideline. He then outran the defense down the left sideline to the tally with 10:13 showing in the opener. Senior kicker Ben Wrasman’s extra point was blocked for a 6-0 lead.
The Flyers gained midfield before having to punt and the Jays again were pinned deep at the 14. They moved out to the 48 but also had to punt, with the Flyers commencing at the 25. Four plays later at the 45, 6-6 senior Adam Bertke (12-of-20 passing, 229 yards, 3 scores) roll left from the shotgun and found sophomore Hunter Wilker (3 catches, 116 yards) behind the defense at the 5 and the touchdown. Junior Peyton Kramer’s point-after gave the home team on the scoreboard the lead for good, 7-6, with 2:32 on the clock.
With the Flyer defense beginning to put the clamps on the Jays and the running game, a holding call on the Jays stymied them. On 4th-and-1 at the 46, Jettinghoff, in the Wildcat, was ruled down a yard short with 11:54 to go in the second stanza. It took one play to make it pay off. Bertke handed off to junior tailback Jacy Goettemoeller (16 rushes, 134 yards) inside left guard, found a clean hole and cut toward the right sideline, spinning out of a final tackle at the 5 and into the end zone with 11:41 showing. Kramer made it 14-6.
Marion mentor Tim Goodwin credited his defense for responding to a challenge this week.
“We have struggled stopping power-running teams the last couple of weeks and we just challenged the kids to not let that happen this week. We changed some personnel — we basically wanted to find out who our toughest kids are and put them in,” he acknowledged. “For example, this is the first time we’ve played Jacy on defense all year; he is a physical and aggressive player. As well, where we usually run several different defenses, we only used one tonight.”
The Jays were forced into the first of three straight 3-and-outs and the Flyers took possession at the 39. Bertke hit senior Troy Homan (5 grabs, 94 yards) for 39 and then they used seven rushing plays to go the remainder of the 22 yards. On 3rd-and-goal from 17, Bertke, in the gun, was forced to scramble to the left. He found the sideline and was flipped over as he crossed the goal line. Kramer made it 21-6 with 5:49 showing in the stanza.
The Flyers used an 18-yard Dustin Rethman punt return to start their next drive at the St. John’s 40 but on play six and the 14, Marion fumbled and sophomore Trent Closson recovered there.
However, the Jays could do nothing and on the final play of the half from the Jays’ 41, Bertke’s throw for the end zone was incomplete.
Goettemoeller returned the second-half kickoff to the 25 and that just started a 5-play drive, despite a holding penalty. At the 46, Bertke — again in the gun — threw for Wilker on the right sideline at the 30; the defender mistimed his jump and the ball settled into Wilker’s arms and he did the rest, cutting back against a final defender for the 54-yard scoring toss. Kramer made it 28-6 with 10:27 left in the third.
A holding call short-circuited any chance for a St. John’s retaliation and Wrasman had to punt, with the victors taking possession at the Jays’ 37. Three running plays put the ball at the 20. Berte then ran a play-action fake and found Homan on a corner route on the left side at the goal line for the final touchdown with 7:29 left in the third stanza. Kramer accounted for the final point and a 35-6 edge.
Another 3-and-out by the Jays followed and the Flyers turned the ball over on downs at the Jays’ 29 after a 9-play, 29-yard possession.
The Jays then went on a 19-play drive — aided by a pass interference on the Flyers — that took 8:06 off the clock and reached the Flyer 1 at one point. On 4th-and-goal at the 4, junior quarterback Nick Martz (4-of-12 passing, 27 yards), under pressure all night by the blitzing Flyer ‘D’, threw an incompletion with 5:30 remaining.
“We came a long way this year. During Elida week to open the season, we didn’t know what we had,” Schulte added. “Even when we were 2-4, the kids kept coming back to practice, working hard and trying to get better. That shows the type of character these kids have — they couldn’t have packed it in then — and what we have in our program; I’m proud of these guys for that. We won a few games in a row and that got our confidence going but we just ran into a great team tonight.”
The Flyers then ran out the clock and set up the chance to go for their seventh State title and the first Division VII championship.
“This was the Jacy of old; we really haven’t seen this much this year because of injuries and the brace on his knee, which no back likes to run with,” Goodwin added. “Our offensive line was getting off the ball from what I could see. What has helped this year is our depth; we had some injuries but we have guys that stepped in. Sometimes you have that, some years you don’t.”
MARION LOCAL 35, ST. JOHN’S 6
St. John’s 6 0 0 0 - 6
Mar. Local 7 14 14 0 - 35
SJ — Tyler Jettinghoff 82 run (kick failed), 10:13
ML — Hunter Wilker 45 pass from Adam Bertke (Peyton Kramer kick), 2:32
ML — Jacy Goettemoeller 46 run (Kramer kick), 11:41
ML — Bertke 17 run (Kramer kick), 5:49
ML — Wilker 54 pass from Bertke (Kramer kick), 10:27
ML — Troy Homan 20 pass from Bertke (Kramer kick), 7:29
St. John’s Marion Local
First Downs 8 21
Total Yards 208 444
Rushes-Yards 35-169 40-215
Passing Yards 39 229
Comps.-Atts. 5-13 12-20
Intercepted by 0 0
Fumbles-Lost 2-0 2-1
Penalties-Yards 3-25 3-30
Punts-Aver. 6-28.5 1-35
RUSHING: Tyler Jettinghoff 14-111, Luke MacLennan 12-47, Nick Martz 9-11.
PASSING: Martz 4-12-27-0-0, Jettinghoff 1-1-12-0-0.
RECEIVING: Jettinghoff 3-21, Tyler Conley 1-12, Evan Hays 1-6.
RUSHING: Jacy Goettemoeller 16-134, Adam Bertke 11-53, Aaron Nietfeld 6-29, Nate Moeller 3-15, Ethan Nietfeld 1-6, Duane Luegers 1-(-)2, Hunter Wilker 1-(-)10, Team 1-(-)10.
PASSING: Bertke 12-20-229-0-3.
RECEIVING: Troy Homan 5-94, Wilker 3-113, Goettemoeller 2-12, Ryan Bruns 2-10.