Potters fall short in opener
CARROLLTON – East Liverpool’s road woes continue.
The Potters lost for the 10th time in their last 11 road games as they dropped a 24-6 decision to Carrollton in Friday’s season opener.
Carrollton’s Tyler Dodd bulled his way for 107 yards on 10 carriers to spark the home team’s offense. Quarterback Zade Dietz was 10-of-14 passing for 191 yards.
“Zade did an outstanding job for us,” Carrollton coach Eric McCort said. “He keeps getting better and better. I thought our receivers did an excellent job of getting open.”
The Potters were led offensively by Zack English, who rushed for a total of 68 yards on eight tries.
“You have to always look for the positives, and I did see some positives,” East Liverpool coach Rick Prescott said. “At times we sustained long drives. We just didn’t finish all of our drives.”
Carrollton scored on the game’s opening possession, as Dietz connected with wide receiver Caleb Pasiuk on a 39-yard fade route. Daniel Leary’s kick gave the Warriors an early 7-0 lead with just 4:32 elapsed in the first quarter.
The Potters answered with a determined 12-play offensive march of their own, capped by John Miscuk’s 12-yard gallop at the 1:51 mark of the first frame. Midway through the drive, the Potters were faced with a fourth-and-three at their own 42-yard line. Punter Zack English daringly scampered down the right sideline for a 21-yard and an all-important first down. Potter quarterback Kade Reynolds completed two passes for first downs during the scoring march.
After conversion attempt was blocked, Potters trailed 7-6.
The deficit reached four as Leary connected on a 25-yard field on the Warriors’ next trip down field, providing Carrollton with a 10-6 lead.
Carrollton need only one play to score on their possession as Dietz teamed up with Adam Warner on 80-yard pass play with 5:55 remaining in the first half. Leary’s successful conversion kick, increased Carrollton’s lead to 17-6, which is how it remained when the teams went to their respective locker rooms at halftime.
The Potters looked like they were going to score on their second possession of the third quarter when they drove to the Carrollton 4-yard line before East Liverpool coughed the ball up. That was the Potters’ first turnover of the night.
“It’s Week One. Tomorrow is a new page and we will get ready for next week against Indian Creek,” Prescott said. “There were times we were only one block or one cut from breaking loose for a big run.”
Carrollton soon found themselves backed up to their own 1-yard line. From there, the Warriors drove 99 yards in nine plays, with Dietz going in from 6 yards out. Dodd ripped off runs of 24 and 30 yards to keep the drive alive.
“We were able to get Tyler Dodd loose for some good runs in the second half,” said McCort. “Early on, East Liverpool was putting so many guys up in the box that we couldn’t get him loose.”
The Potters host Indian Creek at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Patterson Field, while Carrollton will be at Edison.
Indian Creek defeated Weir High 52-13 on Thursday night at Kettlewell Memorial Stadium in Wintersville.
Caleb Crowl, a 2006 graduate of Lisbon High School is the offensive line coach for Carrollton.
A 2010 Mount Union graduate where he was a member of two NCAA Division III national championship teams, Crowl teaches American Studies at Carrollton.
The Carrollton junior varsity team will be play at East Liverpool’s Mangano Field at 10 a.m. today.