Monday, January 30, 2023

Powers airs it out in Kirtland’s win over Geneva

Kirtland quarterback Tommy Powers completed 11 of 14 passes for 198 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Hornets to a 35-0 win at Geneva on Friday.

“This was a huge win for us,” Powers said. “Geneva was a big, physical team and it was a good challenge for us. This was a game we needed in order to continue to get better.”

Powers entered the game just 5-of-8 passing for 65 yards.

He nearly doubled the number of attempts and set a new career mark for passing yards in a game.

“It was a great opportunity to get to throw the ball a little today,” he said. “It’s a nice change of pace for our offense, especially because we’re a run-heavy offense. Being able to throw the ball opens our playbook a lot. The run game is the main reason we were able to be so successful with the passing game. To be able to constantly pound the ball–especially with our great linemen–up the middle draws the defense in, which allows us to spread it out.”

Powers threw a 38-yard touchdown pass to Mason Sullivan in the second quarter and connected with Jake Neibecker on a 56-yard bomb in the fourth.

Despite the success through the air, the Hornets still relied on their running game to beat the Eagles.

Joey Torok celebrated his 18th birthday with touchdown runs of 62 and three yards. He finished the night with 103 yards on 12 carries.

Jake Neibecker added 93 yards on nine carries. He opened the scoring with a two-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter.

“The offensive line did an amazing job again tonight,” Torok said. “They opened up big holes and that was huge for us. Jake and I had some success because of them.”

Kirtland for 228 of its 426 yards of offense.

That balance makes it even more difficult for opposing teams to defend against the Hornets.

“Tommy played great tonight,” Torok said. “It’s huge for us that we can pass because that stops teams from just loading the box and playing run defense. It makes the defense have to worry about one more thing.”

Geneva ran for 99 yards on 38 carries. Charles Taylor led the way with 32 yards on 10 carries and Blake Peet finished with 26 yards on nine rushes.

Kirtland (3-0) opens conference play at home next week against visiting Cardinal while Geneva (0-3) travels to Harvey.

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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