Power outage doesn’t stop Ramblers electric offense and blowout victory
Written by: Keegan Welka on Wednesday, September 5th, 2018
Right after Prep returned the second half kickoff and lined up to make their first play of the drive, the field’s lights abruptly powered off. Some speculated it was caused by the Rambler’s outstanding and quick performance at the end of the first half, but the reality was that it was caused by a citywide outage. The Rambler’s had an electric night against Saint Joe’s North at Dollinger Field Friday night, crushing them with a whopping score difference of 55-7. Billy Lucas had a solid performance on offense, recording 137 rushing yards off of just 12 attempts. Quarterback Regan Schleicher had a decent night as well, passing for 85 yards and rushing for 61.
To start the game, Saint Joseph’s won the coin toss and elected to get first possession. The possession was short lived, however, after the Ramblers forced a fumble on the very first play of the drive.
After the possession change, Prep’s offense had no plans of squandering the opportunity they had been given by the defense. Runningback Billy Lucas dominated the drive for the Ramblers, being responsible for a strong portion of yardage and a touchdown push at the 8 yard line. Because of the offense’s success, the Ramblers had an early 7-0 lead with 10:24 left in the quarter.
Cathedral Prep’s defense continued to lock down Saint Joe’s, forcing another possession change off of a failed 4th and 1 attempt. Saint Joe’s defense followed suit, forcing a possession change off of a 4th and 12 attempt. The back and forth trend of defensive success continued for both teams, resulting in a resounding zero points scored for the rest of the first quarter.
It was midway through the second quarter when Prep had finally separated themselves from Saint Joseph’s North.
After a couple more scoreless drives, Prep was finally able to stop the back and forth by scoring their second touchdown. Lucas was once again responsible for the points, rushing for about 50 yards before arriving to the end zone making it 14-0 with 5:57 left in the 2nd Quarter .
The Ramblers were able to continue their offensive in the half after another touchdown was scored, this time by quarterback Regan Schleicher. With only about 1:50 left on the clock, Schleicher dropped back and almost immediately ran forward, leaving defenders far behind and chasing. And not only was he able to accomplish a rushing touchdown in the half, but he also recorded a touchdown pass. There were only 34 seconds left in the quarter when Schleicher found receiver Skyler Neely wide open, who was able to jog into the end zone uncontested and the score was 28-0 going into halftime.
Prep continued to keep their foot on the gas pedal. As soon as the lights came back on, the offense retained their spark from the prior quarter. Lucas claimed another touchdown for the Ramblers with 10:37 left in the quarter, stacking the score up to 35-0. Cathedral Prep conceded a kickoff return to Saint Joe’s right after his score, but the Ramblers were able to clap back with a kick return of their own, this by Jaheim Howard. Prep remained relentless on their next drive, once again scoring from a straightforward Schleicher sprint to the end zone. With 0:23 left in the quarter and the score set to a very comfortable 41-7 lead, it was pretty much certain that Prep would win the game.
With the Ramblers putting in their bench players and the game clock being run under mercy rule, it was abundantly clear the game would result in a victory for Prep. Saint Joe’s had only one drive in the quarter which lasted for around 10 minutes and without a score. Prep got the ball back and put in their bench players, who showcased some surprising talent of their own. With only 34 seconds left in the game, they scored the final touchdown of the contest and increased the difference even higher to 55-7.
After a heartbreaking loss last week against Pittsburgh Central Catholic, their victory Friday night gave the team a huge morale boost. Said senior lineman Chris Oliver “It means a lot.” Oliver continued, “We needed to find that gap and improve on both offense and defense”.
“It feels good and means a lot to us,” receiver and defensive back Shelby Wiley Jr. stated, “It’s a confidence booster going into Week 3 against a good team.”
On September 8th, Prep will be traveling across the Ohio border to play the 0-2 St. Edward Eagles. Don’t let the record fool you however, Saint Ed’s has been a consistent top program in Cleveland for awhile now. One of the two teams they lost to was Detroit powerhouse Cass Technical, who narrowly won by just 1 point. The other program to defeat the Eagles this year was Mentor High School, who actually beat Prep in a pre-season scrimmage last year. So although the record may say otherwise, it still looks like the Ramblers will have a tough and even better opponent for Week 3 of the regular season.
Follow WesternPAFootball.com on Twitter @WPAFootball