Ferocious Defense Leads Wolverines to Rout Win
September 9, 2021 by Alan Kornspan

Playing on historic Byars Field, this game of the week between West Geauga and Parma was billed as a battle between top east side and west side high school football teams. Accordingly, excitement was in the air as fans were ready to see a game which had the possibility of coming down to the last possession.

Game photos click here.

Playing on historic Byars Field, this game of the week between West Geauga and Parma was billed as a battle between top east side and west side high school football teams. Accordingly, excitement was in the air as fans were ready to see a game which had the possibility of coming down to the last possession.

West Geauga’s defense had another idea, though. In a dominating defensive performance, West Geauga cruised to victory, defeating Parma 43-0.

West Geauga’s defense, led by Lucas Sadler, Austin Pascoe, Joey Hornyak, Ryan Garvey and Chris Ranallo, held Parma to just 34 total yards. In fact, they only gave up 16 yards on the ground and 18 yards passing.

In addition, West Geauga’s defense collected five turnovers throughout the game, including three interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

Lucas Sadler had a great game on defense. He achieved a blocked punt that led to a touchdown, an interception, and made a touchdown-saving tackle on a Parma interception return.

The defensive line play of West Geauga’s Austin Pascoe was also stellar. Pascoe had numerous tackles for losses, and at times it looked like Parma’s line could not stop him from coming right into the backfield. In addition, Pascoe had a key block to allow Hornyak to score on the pick six.

Having great games on defense themselves were Hornyak, who had an 82-yard pick six, Ranallo with a fumble recovery and interception, and Garvey with a touchdown off the blocked punt.

Our defense was lights out again,” West Geauga Head Coach Adam Sopkovich said. “That’s 10 straight quarters of scoreless football.”

Early in the first quarter, with West Geauga leading 7-0 after an eight-yard touchdown pass from Danny Stewart to Torry Stazzone, the defense forced Parma to punt from their own end zone.

On fourth and 26, making his presence known, Sadler broke through Parma’s line and blocked the punt in the end zone. Alertly, West Geauga senior Ryan Garvey leapt high into the air to catch the football while landing in the end zone for the touchdown. Joey Di Lalla added the extra point, and the Wolverines were up by 14 in the middle of the first quarter.

Soon after, West Geauga would go up 17-0 early in the second quarter with a field goal by Di Lalla. Throughout the contest, Di Lalla scored 13 points, connecting on three field goals and four extra points.

Joey Di Lalla had a great game kicking the ball again,” Sopkovich said.

West Geauga would continue to score both on offense and defense in the second quarter.

With 8:13 left in the second quarter, David Fofana scored form 17 yards out. After a successful extra point attempt and a 46-yard field goal by Di Lalla, West Geauga led 27-0 with five minutes to go in the second quarter.

Yet West Geauga’s defense was not content to go into the second half with that lead. Late in the second quarter, Joey Hornyak intercepted the ball at Parma’s 18-yard line. With West Geauga’s players providing great blocking, and a key block by Austin Pascoe, Hornyak returned the ball untouched down the left sideline for an 82-yard pick six, and West Geauga took a 34-0 lead into halftime.

West Geauga’s offense would put up nine more points in a fast-moving second half, adding a Di Lalla field goal and a touchdown run by Michael Cavasinni.

West Geauga gained a total 234 yards of total offense, with 103 yards coming through the air and 131 yards on the ground.

We came out pretty strong in the first half,” Sopkovich said. “We put points on the board. I think we scored on every single possession in the first half, so that’s always a plus.”

West Geauga next travels to Kirtland for a week four match up this Friday.