The Canal Winchester High School football team wanted to come out aggressive Oct. 11 against Franklin Heights, hoping to take advantage of the Falcons’ aggressiveness on defense.
Not only did the Indians’ plan work like a charm in a 45-0 win, but they also set a program record in the process and saw their freshman running back surpass 1,000 yards for the season in the OCC-Capital Division contest.
Quarterback Jack Beeler completed 15 of 23 passes for a program-record 322 yards, throwing the first of his two touchdown passes on the game’s fourth play, and Stephan Byrd rushed for 145 yards and three touchdowns on 18 carries as Canal Winchester won its seventh consecutive game.
“We knew we were going to have to throw the ball, especially early on since they are so aggressive and will put a lot of guys in the box and make you throw to beat them,” Indians coach Josh Stratton said. “This is a game where we need to step up our offense and we took it to a different level. We want to play meaningful football in November. We have to be multidimensional on offense in order to do that.’
The Indians outgained the Falcons 515-90 in total yards while improving to 7-1 overall and 3-0 in the OCC-Capital. The contest marked their most lopsided win since a 50-0 rout of Bloom-Carroll in 2010.
Beeler had 232 yards passing in the first quarter alone and 277 by halftime, when Canal Winchester led 31-0 and had amassed 368 total yards to Franklin Heights’ 78.
“We haven’t exploded much as an offense, so it was good for us to break out tonight,” Beeler said. “For us to do this tonight is a big confidence boost. We can be explosive.”
Beeler threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to Jake Howard 51 seconds into the game and hit Dorian Knox for a 43-yard score with 23.5 seconds left in the first quarter for a 21-0 lead.
Byrd, who has 1,044 yards rushing on the season, scored from 5 yards to make it 14-0 less than four minutes into the game and added touchdown runs of 19 and 1 yards in the second half.
The Falcons dropped to 1-7 overall and 0-3 in the OCC-Capital.
Their best chance to score came in the final minute of the first half, after Amir Kassim returned an interception to the Indians’ 10-yard line. They advanced to the 1 but were stopped on downs.
==========Team 1 2 3 4 Final FRANKLIN HEIGHTS 0 0 0 0 9 CANAL WINCHESTER 21 10 7 7 45
CW—Howard 26 pass from Beeler (Twiss kick)
CW—Byrd 5 run (Twiss kick)
CW—Knox 43 pass from Beeler (Twiss kick)
CW—Twiss 21 FG
CW—Toledo 40 run (Twiss kick)
CW—Byrd 19 run (Twiss kick)
CW—Byrd 1 run (Twiss kick)