BY YANEEK SMITH
ROSSFORD — Port Clinton coach Eric Leuthold’s first win as a head coach came with plenty of uneasy moments, but he’ll take the 58-51 victory over Rossford.
The Redskins (1-1) led by 23 points on two separate occasions — 23-0 and 30-7 — before the Bulldogs (1-1) rallied to make things interesting.
Port Clinton took the lead for good on an 11-yard touchdown run by Dagan Meyers, who finished with 14 carries for 68 yards, and a 24-yard fumble return for a touchdown on the ensuing kickoff by Demetrious Skoufos. A safety was followed up by a 20-yard touchdown run by Cam Gillum, who rushed for 153 yards and three scores, and a 43-yard touchdown pass from Gillum to Gabe Koskela made it 30-7 after one quarter.
Rossford (1-1) outscored the ‘Skins, 44-28, in the final three quarters, but it wasn’t enough.
“We thought going into the game we’d be able to sustain the run and control the line of scrimmage. Give credit to the offensive line, as well as our running backs,” said Leuthold. “Cam ended up running it a little bit as well. Dagan Meyers and Cam carried the ball quite a bit, and Gabe Koskela, Owen Auxter and Demetrius Skoufos got some carries, too.
“Our running backs did a good job. Credit our offensive line for sustaining some blocks and moving some linemen around.”
Leuthold was happy with his team’s effort.
“You get up like that, it’s easy to hit a lull and they fought to the end. A lot of points were scored, and it became a very back-and-forth game,” he said.
Rossford quarterback Alex Williams completed 23-of-33 passes for 379 yards and six touchdowns and carried the ball 13 times for 75 yards and a score. Brendon Revels caught 11 passes for 250 yards and Jake Morris finished with eight receptions for 85 yards.
“They have some pretty good wide receivers that they were able to isolate and take advantage and score quickly,” said Leuthold. “Their quarterback is very accurate, they did a good job of moving the ball, and have some good receivers.
Port Clinton hosts Perkins next week, which is coming off a 42-41 victory over Elyria Catholic in overtime.
“I think we’ve got to continue to improve in all facets of our game,” Leuthold said. “Perkins has some good wide receivers and a good quarterback. They’ve got a good, stout defense.”