Whitmer can't capitalize on strong start, falls to Moeller 20-12 in Div. I championship

12/1/2012
BLADE STAFF
Cincinnati Moeller'S Joe Eramo, 23, is tackled by Whitmer'S Jack Linch, 44, Al Bryant, IV and Devin Thomas, 1, during the second quarter Saturday.
Cincinnati Moeller'S Joe Eramo, 23, is tackled by Whitmer'S Jack Linch, 44, Al Bryant, IV and Devin Thomas, 1, during the second quarter Saturday.

CANTON -- Whitmer fell just short of bringing the city of Toledo another state championship Saturday night.

A day after Central Catholic won the Division II state title, the Panthers fell 20-12 in the Division I title game at Fawcett Stadium.

Whitmer (14-1) made it tense late, capitalizing on the first of two Moeller second-half turnovers to to pull within five points at the end of the third quarter. Quarterback Nick Holley found Nate Holley for a 20-yard touchdown pass moments after the Panthers recovered a fumble to make it 17-12.

Whitmer started strong in its first state championship game appearance in school history, opening with a seven-play, 80-yard drive capped by a 37-yard touchdown pass from Holley to Michael Dzikowski. But it was all Moeller for the rest of the first half.

The Crusaders rolled to three straight scores -- including a go-ahead 6-yard touchdown pass from Spence Iacovone to Keith Watkins.