Perry’s Schiano ties state passing touchdown record in 63-54 win over Riverside
BY JUSTIN LADA
H.S. SPORTS EDITOR
What do you do for an encore performance after tying an Ohio High School Athletic Association record in touchdowns thrown in a single game in Week 1 of the season?
Perry quarterback Drew Schiano has nine weeks to follow up on that performance after going 20-for-31 with 350 yards and nine touchdowns in Perry's 63-54 win over Riverside.
"I heard it on the sidelines," Schiano said when asked if he knew he had tied the record. "I wasn't really paying attention. I just wanted to win this game."
The Pirates needed every one of them to stave off a resilient Beavers team that fought until the end despite getting down early.
Five of Schiano's nine touchdown passes came in the first half with the fifth one putting his team ahead 35-14.
Just before the end of the half, Riverside quarterback Domenic Lulow led the Beavers down the field, throwing a nine yard pass to offensive lineman Alex Sigh and then picking up the final inches needed to keep the drive alive on fourth down himself on a sneak. He ran 20 yards to the end zone on the next play to cut Perry's lead to 35-21 at half the the Beavers taking possession to start the second half.
Riverside could not get it going out of the half and Perry got the ball back and it only took two plays for Schiano to find Anthony Rosati for the third time in a row for the Pirates offense and the sixth touchdown pass of the night for Schiano to make it 42-21.
Lulow and the Beavers responded by finding running back Cayman Locher with a screen pass for a 30 yard touchdown run. The Riverside defense got its biggest and unfortunately for them, the only big defensive stop in the second half on Perry's next drive. They handed the ball back to Lulow who came through on 3rd-and-1 at the Perry nine yard line, picking up a fumbled snap and found receiver Kaden Tinner on the run in the corner of the end zone to get it back to a one score game, 42-35.
Both teams were dealing with cramping issues during the football game turned track meet and traded a pair of punts until Schiano found Matthew Sullivan, who came through on all sides of the ball for Perry in the win, for his eighth touchdown.
Sullivan's key contributions in the game included a blocked bunt in the second quarter and then he caught a touchdown pass after Perry got the ball back, as well as an interception and another touchdown catch.
"On any play, I look for the ball carrier. Try to make the play and anything I can do to help the team," Sullivan said of his all around effort for Perry. "It was a tiring game. But we had to stick to it, play after play."
Touchdown number seven from Schiano to Sullivan at the end of the third quarter may have been the biggest for Perry. The Pirates took over the ball in the Beavers territory at the 13 yard line, but took a chop block penalty, forcing them all the way back to the 28.
After two dropped passes that would have led to first downs, Sullivan hauled in touchdown pass number seven on 3rd-and-25 from the Riverside 28 to put Perry up 49-35.
Down 14 going into the final quarter Riverside rallied with a seven play, 60 yard drive with 36 yards coming on the ground from Locher.
Schiano went deep to Devon Holbert for touchdown number eight, a 59 yarder that kept Perry with a two score lead. Riverside's last rally followed with a key 31 yard kick return from Josh Hannan and Lulow capping off the drive with an 11 yard touchdown run.
Touchdown number nine for Schiano also went to Holbert for a 20 yard score coming after a 30 yard from run Anthony Rosati, who collected a 162 total yards with four touchdowns, and a 20 yard run by Schiano himself.
At 63-48, Riverside punched its way to 60 more yards and another score in just two minutes. Two missed extra points in the fourth quarter kept Perry ahead by two scores and Holbert intercepted a pass for Perry to allow the Pirates to chew enough clock to seal the win before Riverside played out the last drive.
"It was a good game, a shootout and a lot of work. We need to improve though," Schiano said of the Week 1 win. "Riverside is a good football team. They're going to win some games and it's going to help with computer points."
Perry (1-0) hosts Chardon next week at Alumni Stadium, a game that the Pirates fell in last season. In a 49-43 overtime loss that they will be looking to avenge.
"That game last year left a bad taste in our mouths," Schiano said.
Riverside (0-1) will need to see the Week 1 slugfest as a necessary test and something to build on as state champion Kirtland at Riverside is on the docket for Week 2.
"They were going right as us every which way," RIverside Head Coach Dave Bors said. "I thought we contained them at half with two takeaways. I was proud, we just couldn't put it together fully. We'd have the offense drive and the defense would give up a big play. We'd get a stop and the offense wouldn't do something. The defense would get the ball or a blown coverage. It's a young, inexperienced team. This is the stuff you go through when you open with a team like Perry, who's got a lot back. Even at the end, we missed a point after and chasing points. It was still a two possession game. We owe it to our kids to compete to the very end. That's our mantra. To fight and I saw that from those guys. I'm so excited moving forward. It's awesome. We have Kirtland coming to town for the home opener. But it's about us and doing what we have to do to get better and compete. We'll see. If they compete like they did tonight against Kirtland, I'll be proud of them no matter the outcome next week. Life is full of ups and downs. We'll keep after it and do the right thing."
POSTED 08/31/2019 01:11