Western Beaver dominates Sto-Rox
Written by: Josh Funk on Sunday, October 17th, 2010
INDUSTRY, Pa. – Looking at Western Beaver’s overall season record is quite deceiving, as the Golden Beavers’ defeats have come to three opponents with combined 2010 records of 20-1 overall.
But Saturday afternoon against Big 7 Conference newcomer Sto-Rox, Western Beaver left little doubt it was a battle tested bunch.
The Golden Beavers (4-3) physically dominated the Vikings (5-2), outgaining the green and white 283-60 on the ground in a rugged 22-6 victory at a sun-splashed Western Beaver High School.
Historically, Beaver County football has been a brand most known for its rock ’em, knock ’em, sock ’em physical style. Sto-Rox was rocked and knocked and socked all game long, primarily from the running of junior quarterback Eric Blinn and sophomore back Jack Balsar.
“They physically beat us up,” Sto-Rox head coach Ron Butschle said of the Golden Beavers.
And Western Beaver did it running two plays over and over and over again – “17 Lead” and “Arizona.” Either Blinn would run direct snap keepers or Balsar would slice through the defense on trap or draw plays.
“It’s all about execution,” said Western head coach Matt Gray. “When the line and backs execute, (it’s a good thing for us).”
Western found its stride early, racking up 41 rushing yards and three first downs on its first two possessions. It didn’t seem like a lot of offense at the time, but it was more than Sto-Rox was mustering. Even though the Vikes forced a fumble of Western on its third possession, Sto-Rox ran just nine first quarter plays for a grand total of 12 yards with zero first downs.
Balsar (17 rush, 77 yards) broke the scoreless stalemate with 7:06 left in the second quarter on a 13-yard run, capping a 10-play, 67-yard, 6:01 drive.
Sto-Rox’ ensuing possession ended in a Lenny Williams interception, and Western cashed in seven plays later when Blinn scored on an 8-yard run. Balsar added a successful two-point conversion and the purple and gold led, 14-0.
By halftime, Western had tallied 201 rushing yards to Sto-Rox’ 7 and forced the freshman field general Williams into three interceptions.
“We played very, very, very poorly,” Butschle said. “Top to bottom, we played very poorly.”
It got no better for Sto-Rox in the second half. The Vikings’ initial possession ended at the Western 24 yard line with Williams being sacked on 4th and 11. On its next possession, the Vikings had a 35-yard touchdown pass to Marzett Geter negated by a double whammy – of penalties – totaling 20 yards in all. Sto-Rox went from breaking the shutout to a 3rd-down and 40 situation.
The green and white did not break its goose egg on the scoreboard until there were 26 seconds left in the game. Josh Beverly (8 rush, 27 yards) scored on a 1-yard run for Sto-Rox’ only points.
Western Beaver’s Dusin Creel (9 rush, 36 yards) capped the scoring with a 5-yard run with 1:29 left in the third quarter.
The purple and gold ran 61 total plays – 59 rushes and just two passes – and gained 294 yards of offense with 20 first downs. Blinn has himself a game, completing his only pass attempt for 11 yards and adding 181 yards rushing on 24 carries.
“I don’t know how good we are,” Gray said. “But we’re going to find out.”
Meanwhile, on the opposite sideline, there was a completely different tone.
“We’ve got two weeks to fix this. That’s all we’re guaranteed,” Butschle said. “I expect us to come out with character (from here on out).”
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