Beau Hammond
SOSA Staff

SOSA Staff

Portsmouth moves to 2-0 with rout of West

The Trojans took advantage at a shot at revenge on Saturday.

SOSA Staff

McDERMOTT — Last season in a loss to West, Portsmouth’s defense was gashed for 352 total yards with 211 of those coming on the ground.

Portsmouth’s Donovan Carr scores on a 36-yard touchdown pass during Saturday’s 34-7 win over Portsmouth West.
CREDIT: Derrick Webb/SOSA

Saturday was its chance for revenge, and it didn’t let off the gas pedal for a single snap.

The Trojans (2-0) were opportunistic by forcing six turnovers, returning two of them for touchdowns, in a 34-7 one-sided affair over the Senators on Saturday at Northwest High School.

“For the second week in a row, our defense stepped up huge,” Portsmouth coach Bruce Kalb said. “Defense is something that we really took pride in this offseason with new schemes, making sure that we don’t give up 200 rushing yards, getting stops and putting our offense back on the field. Those guys did a great job and executed really well.”

“We made it a key to stop No. 23 [West’s Ryan Sissel],” Portsmouth’s Jalen Jones said. “We knew he was their key player. So we just continued to keep our foot on the gas and shut down any chance of breaking a big play.”

Portsmouth didn’t wait very long to make an impact. On West’s opening possession, the Trojans forced a fumble, which was scooped up by Dariyonne Bryant, who took it 25 yards to the house for a 7-0 lead.

Though it was an early punch to the gut, the Senators (0-2) rebounded and put together a drive to build a bit of momentum. But with the ball on Portsmouth’s 3-yard line, the Trojans forced another fumble and recovered it at the 1 to keep West scoreless.

Later, following a West punt, Portsmouth quarterback Drew Roe connected with Donavan Carr on a slant route before Carr found a clearing and took it 36 yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead.

However, West took a chance and answered on the next possession. Mitchell Irwin went deep and threaded the needle in front of the corner and safety to find Alex Blevins for a 71-yard touchdown to trim the lead to 14-7.

PHOTOS: Images from Portsmouth’s win over West

Both teams traded empty possessions until Portsmouth got the ball back with less than a minute to go in the first half. It only took two plays before Roe found Carr streaking down the field as the duo connected for the second time on a 35-yard touchdown for a 21-7 halftime score.

“We got stopped more times than we should have, but we never give up,” Roe said. “I made some dumb plays that I shouldn’t have, but the guys on the line gave me great protection and the receivers did their job as well. They all fought incredibly hard.”

Though the third quarter went scoreless, West built momentum and had the ball inside of the 5-yard line to end the frame. After getting stuffed on first, second and third down, it opened the fourth quarter facing fourth down at the Trojans’ 1-yard line.

With the game on the line at that point, Portsmouth’s defense came through once again and stuffed the Senators to take back possession, effectively taking all the wind out of the Senators’ sails.

“We’ve been told at practice that the defensive line can’t always be the playmakers,” Jones said. “However, we can do things to help make others make plays. We knew the down and distance, so we took out the legs of the offensive line since the low man wins and our linebackers made the play.”

All momentum remained with the Trojans as Roe later scored on a four-yard run before Reade Pendleton jumped a route, intercepted a pass and returned it for a touchdown to put the final stamp on a Trojan victory.

“We remembered what West did to us last year, and we knew they thought they’d run all over us again this time,” Roe said. “We made it a point this week in practice to stop the run and force them to pass. It’s a great win, but moving forward, we have to fix our offense. We can’t come out and start flat like we did tonight and last week against Valley. It’s something we have to correct.”

Portsmouth returns to action on Friday at home against Deer Park while West hits the road to play at Adena.


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