Saturday, January 28, 2023

Wickliffe blanks Harvey

Wickliffe’s Isaiah Bolon and Chase Fortkamp each ran for two touchdowns as the Blue Devils topped the visiting Harvey Red Raiders 33-0 on Friday.

The Blue Devils’ defense was able to keep Harvey’s athletic offense in check as they improved to 2-0 on the season.

“They’re very athletic and they want to get the ball in space and, their quarterback, he’s pretty good,” Wickliffe head coach Marce Porcello said after the game. “We knew that coming in. We knew they were going to try to get out in space on us. It presents some challenges because we have to tackle in space. I thought we played in space very well.”

Bolon, a junior, opened up the scoring with a 73-yard touchdown run on Wickliffe’s second drive of the game. A missed extra point kept the score 6-0.

After a defensive stop, Fortkamp followed up Bolon’s effort with a 37-yard touchdown run of his own.

Evan Rypinski finished off Wickliffe’s first-half scoring with a 1-yard quarterback keeper, extending the lead to 19-0.

“I think we came in with a game plan, and our guys just executed,” Porcello said. “We had a couple passes early which opened up the run game a little more. We ran our stuff and they executed.”

Harvey was able to keep the game within striking distance in the first half with a forced fumble and a Willie Grimes interception.

The offense moved the ball well but struggled to capitalize in potential scoring situations.

“Our offensive line was a lot better. Our receivers ran crisp routes and I had a little more time up front,” Harvey’s quarterback Jaden Debevec said after the loss. “We’re just going to keep playing and getting better.”

Both teams struggled to move the ball at the start of the second half until a solid punt return set up the Blue Devils at the Harvey 27.

Fortkamp showed off his elusiveness on back to back runs and shook off several Harvey defenders for a 10-yard touchdown run, pushing the lead to 26.

Harvey threatened to score on their next possession, but a Duke Stanczak interception halted the drive and kept the shutout intact.

Bolon ran for his second touchdown of the night on the first play after the interception, putting the Blue Devils up 33-0 at the end of the third.

Neither team scored in the fourth and the Blue Devils defense completed the shutout.

“We need to clean up the penalties and some of the little mistakes we made,” Porcello said. “These guys work really hard and come to practice every day. We need to keep going here. It’s a 10-week season to get into the playoffs. We have Orange next week and they’re a tough opponent, but we’ll get them ready.”

Wickliffe travels to Orange and Harvey travels to Grand Valley for week 3.

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