Thursday, December 7, 2023

Kirtland, Perry dominant in run to Final Four

Kirtland and Perry both dominated their regional championship games on Friday in earning a berth into next week’s state Final Four.

The Hornets thumped Mogadore for the second straight season in a Division VI, Region 21 championship game, 42-0. Kirtland beat Mogadore in last year’s final, 30-0. Perry avenged last season’s loss to South Range by beating the defending state champions in the Division V, Region 17 final, 32-0.

Kirtland scored 14 points in the first quarter and put the game out of reach with a 28-point second quarter.

The Hornets outgained the Wildcats, 299-97.

Rocco Alfieri scored on runs of five and 17 yards in the first quarter. He carried the ball just three times for 31 yards in the win.

Jake LaVerde then opened the scoring in the second quarter with a 23-yard touchdown to Gino Blasini, and Will Beers took it from there.

Beers scored two touchdowns on runs of six and 29 yards, and he hauled in a 50-yard TD pass from LaVerde to close out the scoring. He finished with 99 rushing yards on 10 carries.

LaVerde completed both of his pass attempts for 73 yards and two touchdowns.

With the win, the Hornets improved to 13-1, with its only loss coming via a Week 3 setback to Perry. Kirtland will play 13-0 Sugarcreek Garaway in a state semifinal on Friday at Louisville High School.

Perry improved to 14-0 withs its satisfying victory over the team that ended its playoff run last fall.

The Pirates, who advanced to the state Final Four for the second time in school history and first time since 2016, scored all 32 points in the first half and racked up 449 yards of offense while allowing just 160.

Perry opened the scoring with a 47-yard touchdown pass from Walter Moses to Brayden Richards and then the running game took over.

Moses plunged in for a one-yard score and Jayden Studio followed with a one-yard TD.

The Pirates used a trick play to score again when Richards, a former quarterback, took a handoff and threw a 79-yard touchdown pass to Luke Sivon.

Studio closed out the scoring with a 48-yard run.

Moses completed 6-of-8 passes for 103 yards and Studio led the Pirates with 194 rushing yards on 11 carries.

The Pirates put their undefeated season on the line against 12-1 Harvest Prep in a state semifinal on Friday at Shelby High School.




Steve Hare
Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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