Running behind a line anchored by 6-foot-5, 308-pound Wisconsin-bound Michael Deiter, senior back David Nutter carved his way through the Eagles’ defense for 297 yards on 40 carries, and scored three touchdowns in a 41-7 win by the Comets (5-0, 2-0).
“First off,” Nutter said, “our line was phenomenal. I couldn’t do anything without them, and I trust them. They do all the dirty work. I just run behind them.
“We had a great week of practice, and we came out and played smash-mouth football. It was a great win. We protected our field. Our defense was phenomenal. We had turnovers, we had some sacks, and we made great plays when we needed them.”
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In all, the Comets, Ohio’s sixth-ranked Division IV team, topped Eastwood (3-2, 1-1) 512-251 in total offense, with a whopping 434 of those yards coming on 66 rushing attempts.
“We were just ready to play,” Deiter said. “Everyone was firing on all cylinders, everyone brought their A-game, everyone was pumped, was fast, stayed low, and was tenacious. It was awesome.”
Genoa attempted just three passes, one of which came on a fake-punt from its own 4-yard line in the late in the second quarter.
Comets junior punter/kicker Cody Pickard completed that 28-yard toss for a first down to Quentin Spiess with his team up 24-7.
Genoa had begun pounding the ball at the Eagles from the outset and never stopped.
The Comets forced a punt on the game’s first possession and quickly marched 59 yards in eight plays with Nutter scoring on a two-yard run. By halftime, Nutter had 198 yards on 25 rushes.
The Eagles answered early, moving 80 yards on six plays, including Brent Schlumbohm’s 40-yard run to set up Devin Snowden’s four-yard TD run.
With 5:48 left in the first quarter, Eastwood was even at 7. The rest was all Genoa, which would not give the ball back to the Eagles until 9:46 before halftime.
The Comets launched a monster 13-play, 83-yard scoring drive (all runs) that culminated in a one-yard TD sneak by quarterback Logan Scott (8 carries, 49 yards) with 1:32 left in the first quarter.
When Pickard was roughed while booting the extra-point, he subsequently kicked off from the Eastwood 45. Genoa recovered on onsides kick, and that possession netted Pickard’s 35-yard field goal 2:14 into the second quarter.
“Kyle Nutter [Genoa’s all-time rushing leader and David’s brother] was home visiting from Cincinnati, and I think they had a little DNA transplant in pregame, because David Nutter was special tonight,” Genoa coach Tim Spiess said.
“This was a statement game. We needed this. We haven’t been home in four weeks and the last time [the Eagles] were here they ended our 48-game [regular-season] winning streak.”
The Comets have won 15 straight regular-season games since that loss — that’s 63-1 since in their last 64 games.
On their next drive, the Comets needed only five plays to cover 80 yards, with Nutter capping things on a 25-yard TD run and a 24-7 Genoa lead 4:39 before halftime.
“Their lines are better than our lines,” Eastwood coach Jerry Rutherford said. “It’s pretty simple. Their backs are big and run hard, and Tim’s got a great football team.
“That was a league championship game tonight. I’m sure they’ll roll through the rest of this. It was no secret. They came right at us with Nutter, and we had no answer. They’re a better football team than we are.”
Genoa added a third-quarter TD on Nutter’s two-yard plunge, and tacked on 10 fourth-quarter points.
Casey Gose (11 carries, 76 yards) ended a 79-yard drive on a 15-yard TD run, and Pickard added a 23-yard field goal with 5:26 remaining for the final margin.
Eastwood twice penetrated inside the Genoa 30 in the third quarter, but each of those drives ended with Eagles quarterback Jake Schmeltz being intercepted. Andrew Belcik had the first pickoff, Alex Hayes the second.
Contact Steve Junga at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or 419-724-6461 or on Twitter@JungaBlade.