Quick, Marian down Indians
Nobody knows the importance of linemen more than a quarterback.
But with Marian's Corey Quick, he doesn't only appreciate the play of his teammates in the trenches, he also lives it.
The Colts' signal-caller threw a pair of second-half touchdowns and also ran for a score Friday night to lead his team to a 34-10 victory over host Lehighton in both team's season opener. But it was also his play on the defensive line that helped secure the win.
Quick registered a sack and tackle for loss from his defensive end position, and put pressure on the Indians' signal-caller all night long.
"I'm a bigger kid so they use me all around," said the 6-0, 213-pound senior. "I love defense so it's just another way to control the game.
"Our line worked so hard the whole week and that was the key to the game. Our (offensive) line came out and controlled their defensive line. And that's why we won."
That line play was especially big at the start of the second half.
With Marian holding just a 6-3 advantage at the break, the Colts came out early in the third quarter and jumped all over the Indians. Quick gained his sack on the second play of the half, which was followed by an interception by Ryan Karnish. The line then gave Quick plenty of protection to hit John Julian with a 34-yard scoring strike.
After a quick three-and-out after the score, Marian's quarterback broke through a hole up the middle and eventually went down the sidelines for a 53-yard touchdown run and a "quick" 20-3 advantage.
"He had a great game," said Colt head coach Stan Dakosty of Quick. "He's a big kid and a physical kid and he wants to play.
"We blocked well tonight. We're inexperienced up front but I thought our kids did a good job. They opened up some holes in the second half. It's a big part of the offense when you can get the quarterback running the ball."
The Colts were able to pad their lead early in the fourth quarter as Quick rolled out and hit Lukas Damian for a 25-yard touchdown. The contest was put to rest moments later when Dylan Quirk reached the end zone from 11 yards out and pushed the margin to 34-3.
In all, from the start of the second half until Marian gained its 31-point spread the winners outgained Lehighton 183 yards to minus-nine.
"We had some mistakes in the first half, but the kids worked hard and they deserved to win," said Dakosty. "We felt we had some mismatches that we could take advantage of and our kids did a nice job of that in the second half."
"We just turned it on in the second half," said Quick, who ran for 71 yards and threw for 108. "At halftime our whole team just came in and dedicated ourselves to beating Lehighton and that's what we did. Early on I think there were first-game nerves but we bounced back from that."
Unfortunatey for Lehighton, it wasn't able to take advantage of those Marian jitters.
The Indians recovered a Colt fumble on the first play from scrimmage and had a first-and-goal, but had to settle for a 37-yard field goal from Jacen Nalesnik.
Anthony Agosti gave the visitors a lead when he broke loose for a 22-yard scoring run in the second quarter, but later in the frame the Indians blocked a punt to set up a scoring opportunity. That chance went by the wayside when the offense failed to move the ball and another field goal attempt was missed.
"We had too many missed opportunities," said Tom McCarroll, who was making his Lehighton head coaching debut. "Any time you get a turnover, a blocked punt, you've gotta capitalize on that.
"Our kids weren't as prepared as they needed to be and that's on me. I guarantee from here on out they will be. Marian's a very well-coached team. (Stan's) been there a long time and one thing he's always stressed is be physical firing off the ball and they did. The saying is size doesn't always win and we saw that tonight."
The Indians managed to get into the end zone late in the game when Nalesnik's 52-yard scamper set up his 13-yard touchdown run.