Rootstown Rovers Vs. Fairport Harbor Skippers

The Rovers (2-0 (0-0)) took on the Fairport Harbor Skippers on a beautiful night in Rootstown. Their was a soft, cool, breeze in the air. The Rovers fans were able to settle in and watch their team destroy the Skippers 41-0.

It is really encouraging for fans of the Rovers to see their teams succeeding as it is now.

“Some of these guys have been playing four years, most have not. The ones that have, have been able to teach the inexperienced ones a lot. But you still can’t teach them some things, they have to experience them, but they’ve done a great job.” Coach Geis said when talking about his team this year.

Even though they are only two games into a young season, the Rovers aren’t just winning these games, but they are completely trouncing their opponents.

The Rovers beat Newton Falls by the convincing score of 48-21 last week. The only way they could think to follow up on their season opening blowout win? To dish out an even bigger blowout during their home opener.

“We wanted our guys to come in and focus on their piece of the puzzle.” Coach Geis said of his teams mindset coming into the game, “We challenged them all week to do their job, do what we do. We do nothing special, we just want our guys to improve.”

The Rovers showed their fans just how special their season has the potential to be. They shredded the Skippers defense through the running game, which set up their passing game nicely.

It didn’t start so well for the Rovers however. On their opening possession Junior Quarterback Luke Soboro threw up a deep pass that hung just a little bit too long, resulting in an interception for Defensive Back Hunter Garisek. The play certainly got Fairport fans excited, but their momentum wouldn’t last long.

Fairport tried running the ball early, feeding Running Back Nathan Bagin the ball several times, but he couldn’t really get anywhere. The Rovers defense did an excellent job all game long of closing holes, in affect shutting down the running game. What really hurt the Skippers was the poor play of their Senior starting Quarterback Anthony Marcelli. Marcelli’s play could be compared to a three point shooter in a basketball game, when he’s hot he’s tough to stop. But the flip side to that is, if he’s cold it’s going to be a long, ugly night. Tonight Marcelli was so cold that for a period in the first half he was benched, before being brought back out near the end of the second quarter. He looked as if he wasn’t prepared to face the high intensity, and fast paced pressure that the Rovers were consistently throwing at him. He went a dismal 2/14 from the field for a whopping 16 yards on the night.

But enough about the bad parts of the game, let’s talk about the good.

The Rovers offense was electric in the first half.  After his early miscue, Sorboro went 4/4 to end the game, ending the game with a 4/6 for 152 and two touchdowns, and 10 rushes for 115 yards and a touchdown. After the bad play Coach Mark Geis settled his offense down by calling several rushes, including two Quarterback draws. The Rovers drove steadily all the way down the field, and it would be Sorboro to run it in himself from 9 yards out. That drive put the Rovers up 7-0, but they were not done yet.

Following a Skippers three and out the Rover got the ball back, and were looking to begin forcing the Skippers into a hole. The Rovers struck gold immediately when standout Sophomore Caleb Kaut received a screen pass from Sorboro and took it 52 yards for the touchdown. The Skippers defender had absolutely no chance to catch the amazingly athletic Wide Receiver. The Rovers ended the first quarter on top 14-0, and were just getting started.

The Skipper didn’t even know what hit them in the second quarter. Another failed drive led to a Rovers possession. The Rovers shredded the Skipper run defense, driving the ball all the way down to the 21 yard line. The drive was highlighted by a run from Sorboro in which he stiff armed a defender, and spun around another, and was capped off by a beautiful 21 yard rush by Kaut off the left side making the score 21-0 at the 7:52 mark. After another failed attempt at moving the football the Skipper were forced to punt. The punter made the grave mistake of kicking it to Kaut, and paid the price. The Sophmore took the football 65 yards for an exciting touchdown. Once the Sophomore was able to evade the first wave of defenses he turned on the afterburners and found the promise land. Fans were on their feet in applause.

The Rovers finished the first half strong. Sorboro found Receiver Nick Harris on a deep ball for a 72 yard touchdown to make the score 35-0 going into half time. It seemed as if nothing could go wrong for the Rovers at that point.

The second half didn’t see much action out of either side. The Rovers offense continued to carve up the Skippers defense on the ground, but would eventually stall every time down the field. The only bright point in the half came on a 20 yard scamper by starting Running Back Bruce George to give the team a 41-0 lead. The brightest point in the game, aside from the early interception, came when the Skippers blocked the PAT attempt following George’s run. The fourth quarter saw no scoring, but the fans still cheered on their squad as if the game had just begun.

Following the game Coach Geis said he had one simple message for his team “Week three, that’s all that matters now.”


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