Warren bounced back from back-to-back losses to Oil City and Slippery Rock in a big way Friday night, defeating Corry by a score of 42-21 in a non-region game at War Memorial Field.
"The boys really rallied up to our challenge this week and played much better football," said Dragons' coach Greg Latimer. "We had some athletes step up for guys who were either injured or ineligible; Jacoby Passmore, Eric Cecco, and Evan Suppa all played solid games tonight, and Kyle Kulka and Luke Wortman both had big nights running the ball for us."
The Dragons started the scoring on their very first drive when Wortman capped an 11-play march down the field with a one-yard run for a touchdown, though Corry had its own ideas about how this year's Route 6 rivalry was going to play out
Times Observer photo by Ben Oviatt
Warren’s Devin Nowacki (90) drops down to make a tackle on Corry’s Nathaniel Smith during Friday’s non-region game at War Memorial Field. Warren defeated Corry, 42-21, to improve to 5-2 overall.
The Beavers put the ball in the hands of quarterback Nathaniel Smith and running back Ryan Morris for much of their next two possessions, and the seniors duo turned in pair of rushing touchdowns to take a 14-7 lead after one quarter of play.
Warren answered when quarterback D.J. Fehlman hit Tanner Stanz with a 23-yard pass to convert a third-and-long, and found Ryan Shattuck on the very next play for a 12-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 14-14.
Perhaps the turning point in the game came with Corry looking to convert a fourth-and-goal from inside the Warren one yard line, only to have a sweep attempt by Morris stopped by Fehlman in the backfield for a loss of yards and change of possession.
The Dragons made good use of the stop, moving the ball down the field on a pair of long passes to Shattuck and Stanz, and Wortman broke off a 22-yard run for a score with just 24 seconds left in the half.
Warren made sure it was the last lead change of the night.
Wortman made his presence felt on the defensive side of the ball in the third quarter, ending Corry's first drive with an interception in Dragon territory. After what appeared to be a touchdown run by Kulka was cut short after he was ruled out of bounds after a 28-yard gain, Fehlman found Shattuck with a 42-yard pass for another Warren touchdown.
The Beavers answered less than two minutes later on a pass from Smith to Collyn Frontera, but Wortman's second pick of the night and his ensuing 42-yard run set up a Fehlman to Stanz touchdown pass from three yards out to keep Corry out of reach.
Fehlman found Stanz for one more score in the fourth, and the Dragons' defense put the clamps down to secure the win and improve their record to 5-2 on the year.
Fehlman finished the night completing 13-of-21 passes for 227 yards and four touchdowns, and even caught a seven yard pass from Shattuck on fake punt for good measure. Shattuck and Stanz each had four catches for 102 and 77 yards, respectively, and two touchdowns. Wortman rushed for 150 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 21 carries, and Kulka added 85 yards on 12 carries. As a whole, the Dragons put up 481 yards of total offense on the evening.
Morris led the Beavers (1-6) with 126 yards and one score on 16 carries while Smith added 62 rushing yards and 85 passing yards.
Warren will jump back into Region 5 play next Friday at DuBois.
"They're another good football team," said Latimer. "We need to stick with the basics and continue to stress the fundamentals."
W-Luke Wortman 1 yard run, 6:38 (Ryan Shattuck kick)
C-Ryan Morris 8 yard run, 4:32 (Brody Wood kick)
C-Nathaniel Smith 3 yard run, 1:50 (Wood kick)
W-Shattuck 12 yard pass from D.J. Fehlman, 7:55 (Shattuck kick)
W-Wortman 22 yard run, 0:24 (Shattuck kick)
W-Shattuck 42 yard pass from Fehlman, 9:28 (Shattuck kick)
C-Collyn Frontera 11 yard pass from Smith, 7:34 (Wood kick)
W-Tanner Stanz 3 yard pass from Fehlman, 2:10 (Shattuck kick)
W-Stanz 30 yard pass from Fehlman, 3:17 (Shattuck kick)
RUSHING-C - Smith 14-62, 1TD, Morris 16-126, 1TD, Liam Cragg 3-4; W - Wortman 21-150, 2TD, Fehlman 8-3, Kyle Kulka 12-85, Shattuck 1-12, Ryan Gorgacz 2-(-3).
PASSING-C - Smith 7-26-85, 1TD, 2INT; W - Fehlman 13-21-227, 4TD, Shattuck 1-1-7.
RECEIVING-C - Cragg 2-27, Frontera 3-49, 1TD, Taylor Bloom 1-9, Morris 1-0; W - Shattuck 4-102, 2TD, Evan Suppa 1-10, Wortman 3-33, Stanz 4-77, 2TD, Jacoby Passmore 1-5, Fehlman 1-7.