Warchus runs for 200 yds, 3TDs, throws for another TD to lead Indians past Lowell 35-9
A USA-365.com Special Report by Mark Smith
Lowell's captains Jeff Wallis (13), Trevor
Matovina (72), Jon Alessia (2) and Chris Bozak (11) head to the
middle of the field for the pre-game coin toss.
(All Photos by Mark Smith)
|Portage quarterback Zack Warchus (7) zips through the middle of the Lowell defense as Trevor Matovina (72), Reec Ison (8) and Chris Bozak (11) give chase. Warchus ran for three touchdowns against Lowell.|
|Portage had a bit of a size advantage on Lowell and 315-pound senior tackle Zyaire Shermon (70) was a witness to that fact.|
|Lowell junior Adam Bank (6) steps around the Portage defense for a first half gain. Lowell did gain 11 rushing first downs at Portage.|
|Lowell QB Cameron Stojancevich (17) warms up at Portage. Lowell moved the ball against the Indians but they were stopped four times on downs inside the Portage 40-yard line.|
|Portage used a college style card system to call plays and formations from the sidelines.|
|Portage senior defensive end Humberto Morales (33) was a tough man to block and Lowell QB Cameron Stojancevich (17) had to scramble Friday in Porter County.|
|Lowell senior John Alesia (2) picked up 16 yards on a second quarter reverse. The Devils did rush for 164 yards on 36 carries.|
|Lowell fans of all kinds made the trip to Porter County Friday night to follow the Devils.|
|Portage QB Zack Warchus ran for three TDs and passed for a fourth in the Indians' 35-9 win over Lowell.|
|The phrase 'Welcome to Portage' apparently translated into a 28-2 Portage lead over Lowell after three quarters Friday night.|
|It wasn't a happy trip for the visitors from Lowell as LaPorte won by 26 points. The Devils will be on the road again this Friday at Morton. (All photos by Mark Smith)|
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Friday, August 30, 2019 - 67 degrees (at kick-off) in PORTAGE, IN
Qtr: PORTAGE (7-0)
Ty Swoops, 30-yard pass from
Zack Warchas. 40-yard drive, 3 plays. Miguel Verduzco kick. 10:31 left.
2nd Qtr: PORTAGE (14-0) Zack Warchas, 5-yard run. 62-yard drive, 5 plays. Miguel Verduzco kick. 11:15 left.
PORTAGE (21-0) Jaylen Gohlson, 9-yard run. 51-yard drive, 2 plays. Miguel Verduzco kick. 7:56 left.
PORTAGE (28-0) Zack Warchas, 93-yard run. 93-yard drive, 3 plays. Miguel Verduzco kick. 0:48 left.
3rd Qtr: LOWELL (2-28) Portage fumbled snap, recovered in the end zone by Zach Warchus. SAFETY. 4:20 left.
4th Qtr: PORTAGE (35-2) Zack Warchas, 67-yard run. 67-yard drive, 1 play. Miguel Verduzco kick. 6:12 left.
LOWELL (9-35) Jacob Chandler, 2-yard run. 45-yard drive, 10 plays. Nate Gard kick. 1:44 left.
LOWELL (22 carries, 101 yards, one TD, no fumbles): Ryan Marx (QB-HB) 22 carries, 101 yards; Jon Alessia (WR) 1-15 yards; Jeffrey Wallis (HB) 1-2 yards; Adam Bank (HB) 10-36 yards; Cameron Stojancevich (QB) 3 (minus 27) yards; Johnny Johnson (QB).
PORTAGE (25 carries, 259 yards, 4 TDs, one fumble): Zack Warchus (QB) 9 carries, 212 yards, 3 TDs; Jaylen Gohlson (HB) 9-35 yards, TD; Josh Bloom (QB) 2-16 yards; Mey-Sin Hollowell (WR) 2 (minus-2 yards); Jaylen Amrine (HB) 1-0 yards; Jaivon Gordon (HB) 1 (mius-2 yards)
LOWELL: Cameron Stojancevich (QB) 9 of 21, 71 yards 0 TDs, 0 INTs.
PORTAGE: Zach Warchus (QB) 11 of 15, 174 yards, one TD, 0 INTs.
LOWELL: Jeffrey Wallis (WR) 3-7 yards; John Alessia (WR) 2-8 yards; Adam Bank (HB) 1-5 yards; Ryan Marx (HB) 4-51 yards.
PORTAGE: Scott Hansen (WR) 5-63 yards; Ty Swopes (WR) 4-71 yards, TD; Danny Puplava (WR) 2-40 yards.
LOWELL: 235 yards, 15 first downs, no turnovers;
PORTAGE: 433 yards, 13 first downs, one turnover (fumble).
(08-30-2019) Sometimes when a team gets beat like Lowell did 35-9 at Portage
last Friday, folks like me tend to say ‘Wow, they weren't ready to play, were
That’s a little disrespectful to the team that won. ‘Not ready to play’ probably means, not as ready to play as the other team was.
Lowell did not match the intensity level of Portage last Friday. The Devils trailed 28-0 at the half and, even though Lowell played a decent second half, the horse was way out of the barn on a near-perfect 65-degree night in Porter County.
“We were out-played, out-hustled and out-coached,” said Lowell coach Keith Kilmer, who watched his team give up 212 yards rushing and three touchdowns to Portage QB Zach Warchus.
Warchus, who was not a major factor (5 of 13 passing for 99 yards) in last season’s 7-3 Portage win in Lowell, completed 11 of 15 for 174 yards last Friday and played very confidently in front of about 3,000 fans in the Portage home opener.
The turning point in the game? The opening kickoff. Senior Cody Taylor ran back the kickoff 57 yards to the Lowell 40-yard-line. Warchus hit all-DAC end Scott Hansen for 11 yards. One play later, Warchus fired a 30-yard TD pass to speedy junior Tylee (Ty) Swopes to give Portage a 7-0 lead just 89 seconds into the game.
After Lowell ran three plays and a punt, Portage drove to the Lowell 5-yard-line where Warchus fumbled a snap and Lowell’s Kyler Newcomb recovered at the 10-yard line.
The Devils gained their first two first downs, but a punt only carried to the Portage 38-yard-line. Six plays later, Warchus scored on a QB option run to make it 14-0.
A couple more first downs and another punt by Lowell, this one partially blocked by Portage’s Issac Hegwood. Starting at the Portgae 49, Warchus ran the option 42 yards to the 9-yard line and Jaylen Gohlson scored on the next play to make it 21-0.
Once Portage established that they could throw a little, they killed Lowell with
a spread option. Portage lined up three wide receivers with one running back and
a tight end next to the tackle. With the defense spread out, the Indians ran a
one-back option with Warchus and whatever running back was in the game. Lowell
seemed to key on the back and got beat when the QB kept it and ran.
After Lowell’s fourth punt of the first half died on the Portage 3-yard-line, Warchus ran the option and broke loose for a 93-yard run and a 28-0 halftime lead.
“We were jacked up,” said Portage coach Darren Rodriguez about his team’s quick start. “We wanted to play well in front of the home fans. We made a couple of big plays early and that helped us.”
Rodriguez pulled Warchus out of the game at Mishawaka in week one (a 42-28 loss)
when the score was 42-7.
“Zach played really well tonight,” the Portage coach continued. “He didn't have as good a game last week as he would have wanted. And he probably didn't like it when we took him out.”
"And our outside receivers did a really good job of catching the ball and making
something happen and that’s something we thought we could do watching film.”
Lowell was better in the second half, scoring a safety when Portage fumbled and recovered a snap in their own end zone and on a later drive against Portage’s backups in the fourth quarter. The highlight was Red Devil junior Ryan Marx, who gained 101 yards on 22 carries before he left the game with a foot injury late in the third quarter.
Lowell junior QB Cameron Stojancevich was 9 of 21 for 71 yards with Marx catching four balls for 51 yards. There were not a lot of receivers open against the Portage defense.
DEVIL NOTES: An oddity in the final statistics.
Lowell, which lost by 26 points and was outgained 433-235, collected 15 first downs. The Devils started the third quarter with an 18-play drive, but they turned the ball over on downs at the Portage 4-yard line.
In the last five years, Lowell, a Class 4A school, has opened the season playing two Class 6A Duneland Athletic Conference (DAC) schools. The Devils are 5-5 in those 10 games.
Lowell has given up 768 yards in two weeks and some of it has been poor tackling. Portage gained 267 yards on 23 carries.
For the second week in a row, Lowell faced a quarterback who had started every game for his team the year before.
Zach Warchus was a much more confident player last Friday than he was last year.
“That’s the maturing process,” said Portage coach Darren Rodriguez. “That’s what we hoped would happen. We’ve told him. This is your team. You know them. You’ve got to be the leader.”
Portage, which has lost the season opener to Mishawaka five years in a row, will begin the season with a game against Morton in 2020.
Lowell's next Opponent:
JOHN HARRELL'S INDIANA HIGH SCHOOL
MAP TO SCHOOL
Coach: Sean Kinsey, 22-14 in 4th year at school
OA 19.0, DA 9.5
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