Saturday, September 8th, 2007
By Mark Ruschau
Parkway shuts out St. John's for 3-0 start
DELPHOS -The Parkway Panther football team put a little ugly history to rest Friday night, but more importantly, the Panthers remained undefeated as they dominated the St. John's Blue Jays, 20-0 on Friday night in Midwest Athletic Conference action at Stadium Park.
With the win, its first over the Jays since 1992, Parkway moves to 3-0 for the first time since 2000 and is also 2-0 in conference play. St. John's falls to 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the MAC.
"I am really happy for the kids, they worked hard and it is a great step for the program," commented Parkway coach Ed Kuhn. "It's a great thing for the kids to come in here and get a win over just a great and storied tradition."
The Parkway defense set the tone all night as it held St. John's to just 139 yards of offense and just seven first downs in posting the shutout. The Panther defense did a great job of containing Blue Jay do-everything quarterback Wes Ulm to just 28 yards rushing and just 91 yards passing.
"We didn't really have any special plans for Wes Ulm, we just wanted to play sound defense and keep our responsibilities where they are supposed to be," said Kuhn. "The kids did a good job of staying in their lanes, Ulm is a good player but we did a good job of staying home. We did not game plan anything to stop them, but we made sure that the kids were conscious of his abilities."
The Parkway defense set the tone early in this game. After the offense had a drive stall at the St. John's 25, the Panther defense held the Jays to a three-and-out possession, giving the Parkway offense the ball back on the Delphos 40.
The Panthers moved the ball to the 16 were they were called for a holding penalty and had a sack that moved the ball back to the 36. On third down, quarterback Jordan Thompson hooked up with Marcas Heitkamp for a first down at the four. After an illegal procedure moved the ball back to the seven, Josh Fisher rumbled the seven yards to put his team up 7-0 after the Jensen Painter extra-point kick.
The Parkway defense came up huge on the ensuing St. John's possession as it stopped the Jays on fourth down at the nine.
To start the second half, it was the Parkway offense that set the tone as it took the first possession of the second half and moved the ball to a first down at the St. John's eight before turning the ball over on downs. The Black and Gold defense quickly put the offense back on the field as they forced a three and out, giving the ball back to the offense at the Delphos 21.
The Parkway offense took three plays to cover the 21 yards with Thompson connecting with Heitkamp for the score.
On the ensuing St. John's possession, Parkway special teams set up the final Panther score of the game, stopping St. John's on a fake punt at the St. John's 25. Thompson completed the drive with a one-yard plunge.
On the evening, the Parkway offense showed balanced rolling up 346 yards of total offense and totally dominated the time of possession as they had the ball for 30 minutes.
Thompson had a good night passing the ball as he connected on 14-of-27 for 220 yards. Heitkamp grabbed four balls for 87 yard and a score.
"We had it in their zone several times tonight but they did a good job of keeping us out of the end zone," said Kuhn. "Sometimes we did not execute very well, we had some penalties, but when we needed to we did a good job of getting the ball in the end zone enough.
"I have to give some props to our offensive line," continued Kuhn. "The offensive line got better this week and did a great of controlling that very quick defense."
Parkway returns home next week playing host to Marion Local in a battle of unbeatens. St. John's will look for its first win next Saturday hosting Versailles.
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Mostly cloudy, showers
Mostly cloudy, showers