The Canfield Little Cardinals 120-pound JV squad captured the YAC JV championship for the second straight year with a come-from-behind 8-6 victory over the Austintown Colts Oct. 23.
The Colts took a 6-0 lead late in first half when its quarterback found a streaking receiver who then dashed 50 yards for a score on a fourth and 12. Canfield’s defense, behind linebackers Alex George, Brent Herrman, Luke Holland, and Andrew Morchak stopped the Colts conversion try in a what would become the games decisive play.
Austintown maintained its 6-0 advantage heading into the fourth quarter. That’s when Canfield opened the stanza with a long drive, keyed by Nathan Fiorenza converting several key third downs. The Cards faced a fourth-and-3 from the Colts’ 13 with under two minutes to play.
Holland went over right tackle behind key blocks from CJ McFall and Joseph Warren and rumbled 13 yards to paydirt to knot the game at 6-6. Holland put Canfield ahead for good with a conversion run. Canfield’s Fiorenza sealed the victory when he picked off a desperation Colts pass.
Defensive standouts for the Cards were Luke Morrell, Nick Cavoulas and Paolo Papalio. Offensively, Brennan Beil, Daniel Gibson, Robbie Coonce, Chase Lowry, and Race Mingus were standouts.
Cards 140s advance to Super Bowl
The Canfield 140-pounders advanced to this weekend’s YAC Super Bowl after scoring a 29-0 victory over the Austintown Colts in the conference title game.
The Cards will face the Austintown Little Falcons for the championship Sunday at 1 p.m. at Hickory High School in Hermitage. During the regular season, Canfield beat the Falcons 12-6 in overtime.
The Cards had the ball first and drove to the Colts’ 8-yard line where Paul Breinz took it in for a touchdown and Paul French added the PAT for an 8-0 Canfield lead.
On the Colts’ first possession, Canfield’s Vince Giodano burst into the backfield causing a fumble that Luigi Rohrbaugh recovered on the Colts 40. The Little Cards drove again to where Breinz took it to the end zone from 3 yards out.
Canfield scored again on a Vinny Fiorenza TD and French added the PAT to put the Cards ahead 22-0. The next Colts drive was stopped by PJ Hallof causing a fumble that Nick Crawford recovered. In the second half, Crawford scored from 3 yards out to seal the win.
Canfield 120s seek third straight title
The Canfield 120-pounders used a suffocating defense to beat the Poland Little Bulldogs 46-0 last weekend to win a YAC American Conference title and secure a spot in the Super Bowl.
The Cards will seek their third straight Super Bowl title when they face the Austintown Little Falcons Sunday in Hermitage.
Canfield’s (9-0) defense was led by Ethan Fletcher, who registered 10 solo tackles, including four for losses, forced two fumbles and recovered one. Offensively, Andre Crump had three rushing touchdowns, a TD pass, and a two-point conversion.
Fletcher got Canfield on the board first when he went 23 yards over left tackle for a score and Crump added the conversion for a 8-0 lead. Gavin Tareshawty pounced on a Bulldogs fumble on their next possession, giving Canfield the ball at the 33. Crump bolted around left end and tiptoed down the far sideline to pay dirt. Santino Marucci added the conversion to make it 16-0 at the end of one quarter.
Fletcher was at it again on the next series when he stripped the Bulldogs ball carrier and pounced on the fumble at the Poland 28. Crump then dashed untouched 28 yards over right tackle for the score. Fletcher tossed a pass to tight end Pat Guerrieri for the conversion and 24-0 lead.
Canfield closed out the half with Crump going to the air tossing a TD strike to Guerrieri, who broke a tackle and rumbled 32 yards for the score and 30-0 halftime lead.
Crump eliminated any doubt on the first possession of the second half when he swept around right end and outraced the Poland defense to the end zone from 55 yards out. Jake Kowal added the conversion for 38-0 advantage.
Marucci put the finishing touch on the victory when he picked off the Bulldogs signal-caller and sprinted 39 yards for the touchdown. Logan Torok’s conversion provided the final margin.
Crump led all ball carriers with 152 yards on nine carries, Fletcher had 35 yards on five tries and Guerrierri was the leading receiver with two grabs. Cited for the stellar play on offense were Alex Smyczinski, Anthony Orr, Angelo Cestone, and Greg Karas.
Defensively, Peyton Kostelic (two sacks), Mario Mavar, David Noday, Michael Gonda, and Seth Hull were standouts.