The Watterson High School football team used a stingy and opportunistic defense and a long drive at the end of the game to defeat visiting Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit 13-7 on Sept. 7.
“I was proud of the way the guys played,” said Watterson coach Dan Bjelac, whose team improved to 3-0 with its first victory over Walsh in six tries. “They made a lot of mistakes, but they toughed it out.”
The Watterson defense set the tone on the first drive, holding the Warriors to 6 yards on three plays to force a punt.
On their first drive, the Eagles converted a third-and-15 when quarterback Andy Elberson ran for 16 yards. They scored six plays later as running back Deandre Golden leaped over the middle of the line and somersaulted into the end zone with 6 minutes, 20 seconds left in the first quarter to make it 6-0.
Watterson extended its lead early in the second quarter. After Walter Green picked up a first down with a 16-yard run on third-and-2 from the Walsh 34, the Eagles faced a fourth-and-3 at the Walsh 9-yard-line. Elberson stuck his helmet into the middle of the defensive line, didn’t like what he saw, and spun 360 degrees to break outside and right. He ran untouched into the end zone as the Eagles went ahead 13-0.
“That’s not really a designed play,” Elberson said. “It’s an option and it’s my job to find a hole. They had stuffed the middle up pretty good, so there wasn’t much else I could do but try to take it outside.”
On its second possession of the second half, Walsh mixed the run and pass on a 46-yard drive that was capped by a 2-yard run by Zach Kordich to cut the lead to 13-7.
But on its next possession Walsh lost the ball on a fumble going for it on fourth down near midfield and did not threaten again.
Late in the fourth quarter, Watterson ran nine consecutive times, including a 24-yard carry by Elberson around the right end, to seal the game.
"When they needed to bang heads on that last drive, they really came up big,” Bjelac said.
|CUYAHOGA FALLS WALSH JESUIT||0||0||7||0||7|
BW – Golden 1 run (kick blocked)
BW – Elberson 9 run (Harper kick)
WJ – Kordich 2 run (Knoll kick)