Prep Football: Schlatter racks up 192 yards in 44-6 Hardin Northern win

FOSTORIA ST. WENDELIN’S Cyle Smith tries to take the ball outside around the Hardin Northern defense during Friday’s season-opener at Hardin Northern. The Polar Bears took control in the second quarter and pulled away to a 44-6 win over the Mohawks. (Photo by Bree Ridgeway)

FOSTORIA ST. WENDELIN’S Cyle Smith tries to take the ball outside around the Hardin Northern defense during Friday’s season-opener at Hardin Northern. The Polar Bears took control in the second quarter and pulled away to a 44-6 win over the Mohawks. (Photo by Bree Ridgeway)

By MATT NYE
THE REVIEW TIMES
DOLA — When a team has depth issues, it is hard to compete.
Eighteen-player St. Wendelin came into the season opener knowing it can’t afford many injuries, but the Mohawks lost two players in a 44-6 loss season-opening nonconference loss to Hardin Northern Friday night.
“We had a tough game,” St. Wendelin coach Jim Bodart said. “We were missing tackles and not executing any fundamentals out there. I told them before the game that we have a lot of sophomores that need to play like juniors tonight. And we didn’t get that. We had a few that were up to that level tonight and played a really good game.
“We got into the second half and we had some cramping issues and a couple of injuries, which for a team like us, is catastrophic.”
St. Wendelin showed some fight early after allowing a touchdown just 2 minutes into the contest as Donovan Scudder broke through the middle of the line and scored a touchdown from a yard out.
Down 8-6 the Mohawks tried to tie it up on a two-point conversion, but Justin Walter pulled up short of the goal line with a hip injury that sidelined him for the rest of the game.
After the failed conversion, the Polar Bears took it to the Mohawks the rest of the way. Junior running back Wes Schlatter carried the ball 21 times for 192 yards and five touchdowns for Hardin Northern. Freshman quarterback Will Poling added 76 yards on the ground and a touchdown, all in the first half.
“He’s a good kid,” Polar Bears coach Mike Dennis said of Poling. “He’s a smart kid and he’s willing to work at his position every day. Hopefully he will continue to grow after this first game and feel better about himself. Hopefully he is not satisfied and continues to work because he is just a freshman, after all.
“Wes (Schlatter) did a nice job of cutting and seeing the hole tonight. He is a hard runner and a hard-nosed kid and hopefully he will continue to grow in that position. We just need to make sure we get some other kids involved into the offense moving forward so we don’t become predictable.”
Schlatter opened the contest with a touchdown from a yard out up the middle.
Hardin Northern converted the two-point conversion on a Poling run. Schlatter proceeded to add touchdown runs of 13, six, five and 50 yards.
First-year starting quarterback Cyle Smith had a tough night for the Mohawks as he was just 4 of 13 passing for 26 yards and an interception. Scudder totaled 100 yards of total offense for St. Wendelin, including 77 yards on the ground.
“Don Scudder is just a workhorse for us,” Bodart said. “He just does whatever we ask him to do out there. He was on the ground cramping up so hard he could barely walk and he wanted to go back in with just 30 seconds left. It’s just the type of kid he is.”
Mohawks wide receiver Ryan Nicholson went down in the third quarter with an ankle injury.
“Maybe just the first injury we could’ve battled back from, but two key injuries did us in,” Bodart said.
“We will get two backs back next week, including Brayden Moon, who will back up Cyle Smith, which will be nice. Plus we have an extra day off because our next game is next Saturday, so that will also help a little bit with our injuries and depth.”
The Polar Bears’ 36-6 lead in the third quarter put into force the new Ohio High School Athletic Association rule in which the clock ran nearly nonstop.
“I told our team in the locker room that I was proud of their effort,” Dennis said. “I also didn’t want to downplay their excitement, but I know this is just the first game, so we need to try to put this behind us and continue to get better for our next opponent.”
Fostoria St. Wendelin 6 0 0 0 — 6
Hardin Northern 16 12 16 0 — 44
First Quarter
HN — Schlatter 1 run (Poling run)
FSW — Scudder 1 run (run failed)
HN — Schlatter 13 run (Poling run)
Second Quarter
HN — Schlatter 6 run (run failed)
HN — Poling 16 run (run failed)
Third Quarter
HN — Schlatter 5 run (Poling run)
HN — Schlatter 50 run (Poling pass from Watts)
HN FSW
First Downs 13 6
Rushes-yards 40-324 24-153
Passing Yards 29 25
Comp-Att-Int 1-2-0 4-14-1
Punts-Avg. 0-0 2-23.0
Fumbles-Lost 2-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards 7-62 3-18
individual statistics
rushing — Hardin Northern — Schlatter 21-192, Poling 8-81, Watts 3-35, Rickenbacher 4-5, Tobin 4-11. Fostoria St. Wendelin — Scudder 11-98, Nicholson 5-16, Walter 1-2, Smith 3-14, Stosio 1-(minus 1), Cassidy 3-24.
passing — Hardin Northern Poling 1-2-0, 29 yards. Fostoria St. Wendelin — Smith 4-14-1, 25 yards.
receiving — Hardin Northern — Schlatter 1-29. Fostoria St. Wendelin — Scudder 3-22, Hipsher 1-3.

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