Turnovers translate into early scores as Warriors rout Garfield

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Photo by Pete McIntire Carrollton ball carrier Brock Smith (7) meets Garfield defender Antoine Wilson (4) head-on during a Saturday game in Akron.

By Carol McIntire
Carrollton turned two early Garfield fumbles into touchdowns and cruised to a 49-18 non-conference win in a rare Saturday afternoon game at Akron Sept. 17.
A quick touchdown by junior Ryan Kiko after the visiting Warriors pounced on a Rams fumble on the second play of the game and a one yard score by senior Ben Zinda on a third-and-13 play on Garfield’s next possession gave the Warriors a 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. Quentin Rosenberger added the extra points, and ended the day splitting the uprights on seven kicks.
“We played well the first quarter,” Carrollton Coach Jim Tsilimos said following the game. “But, we took some steps back in the second quarter because we got lazy up front and didn’t pick up blitzes. We made the correction at halftime and everyone saw what happened in the third quarter. I was concerned going in because they were blitzing and we weren’t catching it. That’s just fundamental football.”
On the first play of the second quarter, Carrollton senior quarterback Cadyn Smith added a one-yard touchdown and the Warriors enjoyed a 21-0 lead.
The Warriors dodged a bullet just a couple minutes later when a punt was mishandled by the returner and a Ram jumped on the ball. The Carrollton defense did its job and handed the ball back to the offense. On the second play of the drive, Ram Tristian Thompson snagged a Smith pass out of the air and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown.
The hosts cut the lead to 21-12 with just over a minute left in the first half after a Warrior fourth down play came up short on the Garfield 18-yard line. The Rams wasted no time marching down the field and capped the drive off with a 24-yard scoring pass from quarterback Raymond Trice to Marquis Vaughn. Both two-point conversions failed.
It took Carrollton just 54 seconds to erase the score with one of their own. Brock Smith returned the kickoff to the 38-yard line. Smith completed a quick pass and senior Chase Oehlstrom followed the block of Brock Smith into the open field where he raced 35 yards to the end zone.

Carrollton enjoyed a 28-12 lead at halftime.
The Warriors dominated the third quarter.
On the opening drive, Carrollton’s offensive line opened gaping hole for the running backs. Oehlstrom picked up 44 yards on four carries and capped off the drive as he rolled over a player and into the end zone for a nine-yard touchdown.
The Carrollton offensive line pushed Oehlstrom the finals two yards and over the goal line for his third score of the game less than a minute later.
Kiko and Levi Crider teamed up for Carrollton’s final score of the game after Trice completed a pass and his receiver fumbled as he was being tackled on the 48-yard line. Four plays and 42 yards later, Crider crossed the goal line from six years off.
Garfield’s final score came on 67-yard pass from Trice to D’monte Terry.
Tsilimos had praise for the defensive effort of his team.
“They’re first score was an offensive touchdown, an interception they turned into a pick six and their second came on a long pass when we had a breakdown in the coverage. It was the first time Chase played that position; and he’s going to play there some more.”
I told the kids yesterday and again this morning, the keys to this game were we had to win special teams, which we did; can’t give up big plays, we gave up one; and the line had to control the line of scrimmage; they basically did that two out of three quarters.
With the win, the Warriors improved to 4-1 and head as they head into the second half of the season: five Eastern Buckeye Conference games in a row.
“For us every game is going to be tight. The have to play just like we did today: win special teams, don’t give up big plays and control the line of scrimmage. The league is very competitive. It’s not necessarily who we play, it’s when we play them,” he concluded.

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