STEUBENVILLE - After last week's tough loss in Massillon, Reno Saccoccia wanted his Big Red football team to have a better start Friday against Pittsburgh Westinghouse.
Turning five first-quarter snaps into a pair of touchdowns, Big Red rolled to a 33-6 Homecoming victory at Harding Stadium
FINDING PAYDIRT — Steubenville Big Red’s Kai McClurg finds the end zone during the fourth quarter of Big Red’s 33-6 Homecoming victory over Pittsburgh Westinghouse Friday at Harding Stadium.
The win moves Saccoccia's club, ranked ninth in the Ohio AP Division III poll, to 5-1 and sets the stage for next week's showdown with Youngstown Ursuline, which will bring a 3-3 mark to Reno Field after falling to Erie Cathedral Prep 47-7 Friday.
After the defense recorded its first of six three and outs, Big Red's offense needed just two snaps to reach end zone. Teshawn Luke gained six yards on his first attempt, then took a Corey Stinson handoff and sprinted 42 yards for the score. Luke Smith added the extra point.
Westinghouse's second possession ended when Arin Goldsmith sacked quarterback Hasaan Allen on third and nine. This time, Big Red started at the Bulldog 47.
Big Red 33, Westinghouse 6
Westinghouse 0 6 0 0 - 6
Big Red 14 6 7 6 - 33
BR: Luke 42 run (Smith kick)
BR: Westlake 47 pass from Stinson (Smith kick)
BR: Redman 2 run (run failed)
W: Spreaman 89 yard blocked field goal return (pass failed)
BR: Petrella 50 pass from Stinson (Smith kick)
BR: McClurg 1 run (run failed)
RUSHING: Big Red 41-209-3 (Stinson 4-16; Redman 7-46-1; McClurg 3-9-1; Luke 8-80-1; Donte Brown 5-31; Cole 1-2; Williams 2-6; Blue 5-10; Collaros 1-(-6); Sherrill 1-6; Agresta 3-5; J. Hayden 1-6); Westinghouse 22-(-6) (Allen 4-(-17); Murphy 7-10; Davis 3-(-8); Evans 3-8; Roberts 2-9; Fuller 1-(-2); Brown 3-(-6)).
PASSING: Big Red 11-21-2-0-206 (Stinson 11-21-206-2; Agresta 0-1; Collaros 0-1); Westinghouse 7-21-0-2-75 (Allen 1-8-7; Brown 6-14-69-0-2).
RECEIVING: Big Red (Petrella 6-102-1; Westlake 2-62-1; Saltsman 1-11; Robinson 1-11; Lawson 1-20); Westinghouse (Lyons 3-37; Davis 1-7; Broadus 2-22; Lane 1-9).
FIRST DOWNS: Big Red 19; Westinghouse 4.
PENALTIES-YARDS: Big Red 4-40; Westinghouse 2-10.
PUNTS: Big Red 1-26; Westinghouse 7-28.
FUMBLES-LOST: Big Red 2-2; Westinghouse 1-0.
Stinson hit Matt Petrella for nine yards and Dashon Redman plowed forward for one. The hosts were hit with a holding penalty, moving the pigskin back to the original line of scrimmage. Stinson dropped back and found Evan Westlake for a 47-yard touchdown. Smith nailed the conversion try again.
Five offensive snaps, two scores and Big Red had the lead for good.
Cameron King came through with a big defensive effort on the third Bulldog series, dropping Allen for a nine yard loss. The Big Red offense appear poised to go three for three. Redman bulled his way for 18; Stinson added five with his legs and 11 more with his arm, hitting Petrella again. However, on first and goal at the four, the Big Red ball carrier lost the handle and the Bulldogs recovered.
Big Red's final score of the half came on a two-yard plunge by Redman, capping a seven-play drive that started at midfield. Stinson completed passes to Petrella and Cody Saltsman for 20 of the stripes. A bad snap on the extra point try kept the score at 20-0.
Westinghouse, now 0-5, got its only points just before intermission when Beyshaud El broke through and blocked Smith's 21-yard field goal try. Iziah Spreaman scooped up the football and traveled 89 stripes. The pass attempt for the two-pointer failed. El would block another Smith attempt early in the fourth period.
During the first two quarters, Big Red ran 29 plays from scrimmage and collected 270 yards. On their six possessions, the hosts scored three touchdowns, fumbled the ball twice in the red zone and had the blocked field goal.
The Bulldogs, on the other hand, could muster just eight yards on 21 plays.
Big Red ran its advantage to 27-6 on its first drive of the third stanza. Stinson threw an incompletion before Luke ran for six to the 50. From there, Stinson found Petrella streaking down the sideline. The senior wide receiver avoided two tacklers and motored to the end zone. Smith added the kick.
Kai McClurg got the final touchdown when he slide in from a yard away.
The second half defensive effort featured interceptions on back-to-back Westinghouse possessions by Perrier Coleman and Aaron Richmond along with another sack, Goldsmith and Donte Brown teaming up to drop Ronald Brown.
"The only real thing we can judge tonight is attitude," Saccoccia, who emptied his bench early in the game, said. "I liked what I saw as far as the guys that were in there and even more, I liked the attitude of the older guys when the younger guys were in there."
Big Red finished with 415 yards of offense (a very balanced 209 on the ground and 206 through the air). Stinson hit on 11 of 21 attempts for two scores. Petrella had his best showing of the season, grabbing six Stinson tosses for 102 and a touchdown. Luke averaged 10 yards a trip (8 carries, 80 stripes) to pace the ground attack. Thirteen different players had carries for the winners.
Westinghouse did manage 75 passing yards, the majority coming after the Big Red starters were watching from the sidelines. On the ground, however, the Bulldogs finished with negative six.
"They were scrappy and our kids hung in there and played tough," Saccoccia added. "Everyone that played tonight contributed to the win. I told our guys I was going to judge them on their attitudes and how hard they backed up the players that were in the game."