Linsly Opens With Dominating Showing
Cadets Blast Beaver Eastern at Home, 42-6
WHEELING — All coaches obviously want to win their season opener. It’s an added bonus when every player on the roster can take the field.
Such was the case for powerful Linsly on Saturday.
Coach B.J. Depew saw his OVAC 3A-reigning Cadets debut with an impressive 42-6 romp over Beaver Eastern Saturday afternoon at Lockhart Alumni Stadium’s Fawcett Field.
The game’s second half was truncated to eight-minute quarters after the hosts built a 40-6 halftime advantage while the Pike Countians saw their already-thin roster lose a handful of players due to injury. The Eagles are coming off two straight OHSAA postseason berths.
“It was a nice way to start for several reasons. We got a win. We got out of here healthy and we had every player in uniform get playing time,” Depew said.
That is no small accomplishment as the Cadets boast a team with 50 players.
“We know we will have tougher challenges down the road. But we did a lot of good things,” Depew said. “We will see how well we played after we watch the film.
“I thought Wyatt (QB Hirt) looked sharp as did our receiving routes. The pass protection was much improved which was a concern after our second scrimmage. It was our plan to spread the ball around and it was nice to see some kids score their first touchdowns.”
Hirt was virtually perfect. The strong-armed senior completed all eight of his passes for 179 yards and three touchdowns — all going to different receivers.
Linsly gained 214 yards on the ground with 10 different Cadets toting the leather. Senior ace Eli Petho led the way in limited action with 62 yards and a TD on nine carries. He had two long scoring runs nullified by holding penalties.
The Cadets boast a talented and deep receiving corps.
Senior standout Jules Giovengo led Linsly pass-catchers with three grabs for 77 yards and a TD. Junior dynamo Trevin Tush hauled in three passes for 45 yards and a TD. Mikal Warfield-Payne landed Hirt’s third scoring aerial.
While the Linsly offense had things to its liking all day, the defense was every bit its equal. The hosts’ stop troops were suffocating to say the least, yielding 28 total yards and no first downs.
Linsly put 20 points on the board in the first quarter, two TDs coming on Hirt tosses and the third via a 4-yard Petho burst. The Eagles tallied their lone score after Linsly’s second touchdown when Dillion Mattox returned a kickoff 92 yards to paydirt.
The Cadets tacked on three more touchdowns in the second quarter.
Hirt delivered his third scoring pass followed by Giovengo’s 51-yard punt return for six. The final Linsly TD was a 23-yard run by Carl Nyh with 3:39 remaining in the opening half. Nyh added four PATs.
The only score in the rapidly played second half was a safety when a Beaver Eastern punt snap was hauled in on the end line.
“I was proud of how our kids handled the circumstances,” Depew said. “Beaver was running short on numbers. I think we handled the situation the right way.”
Linsly’s sophomore safety dandy Hunter Kelley picked up where he left off last season with another interception.
The Cadets return to action Saturday, playing host to Pittsburgh Westinghouse in a 1:30 p.m. kick.