Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Wickliffe rebounds with big win over Fairport

Entering Friday night’s homecoming game at Wickliffe Memorial Stadium, there was a question of how Wickliffe would respond after its first loss of the season last week against Cuyahoga Heights.

The visiting Fairport Harding Skippers found out early and often as the Blue Devils rebounded with a 46-14 victory.

Rashawn Alston’s 62-yard touchdown run gave the Skippers a short-lived 6-0 lead.

Chase Fortkamp ran for touchdowns of 26 and 54 yards and Isaac Pettway added a 71-yard scoring run to close out the first quarter with Wickliffe on top, 20-6.

“Our team started strong,” said Fairport coach Cameron Ruff. “We moved the ball for a few first downs on the first possession before Rashawn Alston burst for a 62-yard touchdown to give us an early lead. Defensively, we aimed to stop their inside run, which we were able to do. However, we struggled with their speed on the outside and they scored quickly.”

The Blue Devils went on to score 46 unanswered points.

Brad Dieterich threw a 46-yard touchdown pass to Jaylen Bowers and Fortkamp and Pettway added scoring runs of 40 and 36 yards, respectively.

Dieterich booted a 27-yard field goal as time expired in the first half to close out Wickliffe’s scoring.

Alston ran for a 65-yard touchdown in the third quarter and Sam Schuster and Tobin Schafer connected on the two-point conversion.

Wickliffe racked up 403 yards of total offense with 350 coming via the rushing attack.

Pettway and Fortkamp both ran for 131 yards and Dieterich completed 2-of-3 passes for 53 yards.

Alston finished the game with 158 yards on 14 carries for the Skippers and became the first Fairport back in six years to eclipse 1,000-yard rushing mark.

“We’re proud of our effort, especially of the upperclassmen’s support for the underclassmen’s play in the second half,” Ruff said. “We’re also excited that Rashawn Alston broke through again to pass the 1,000-yard mark for the season. Credit to him and the offensive linemen of Martin Mendoza, Quentin Piotrowski, Dominic Knesebeck, Mike Voiles and Ethan Whitt for their blocking all year.”

With the win, Wickliffe improved to 7-1 overall and 4-1 in the Chagrin Valley Conference. The Skippers fell to 3-5, 1-4.

Fairport travels to Cuyahoga Heights on Friday while Wickliffe heads to Berkshire.

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