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Fast start, strong defense carries Norwalk

Mark Hazelwood • Updated Sep 15, 2018 at 2:04 AM

NORWALK — An early lead was crucial.

A sharp defense then did the rest.

Host Norwalk got a pair of touchdowns in the first quarter, and the Truckers never let the triple option offense of visiting Edison get going in Friday’s 35-0 win at Whitney Field.

Edison (3-1) entered the game unbeaten, with the option having gained more than 750 yards and 12 touchdowns in the three wins.

In Friday’s loss, the Chargers were limited to just 77 yards rushing on 34 attempts (2.3 yards per play).

“Honestly, we couldn’t have done it without our linebackers,” said Norwalk defensive end Tche Leroux, a University of Toledo commit. “They just stand out. Every week, they’re just there. If we miss anything up front — there is no getting past them.”

Norwalk (3-1) got on the board right away. The Truckers didn’t have a negative play in moving 56 yards in six plays that spanned just 2:34 of the game clock. On third-and-2 at the Edison 15-yard line, Trevon Raymore started another big night with a 15-yard touchdown run through the left side of his offensive line.

The first of five Garrison Smith extra points made it 7-0 at the 9:21 mark of the opening quarter.

Edison drove to the Norwalk 40 on its first possession, but were forced to punt the ball away. That set up a 10-play, 90-yard scoring drive by the Truckers that included two fourth-down conversions — the last going for six points.

On fourth-and-1 at the Edison 49, Raymore ran for seven yards. five plays later, it as fourth-and-5 at the Edison 15. Quarterback Garrett Chapin had plenty of time, and found an open Kaden Livingston across the middle of the field for an easy 15-yard TD pass and catch that made it 14-0 with 55 seconds left in the first quarter.

“We usually defer if we win the toss, but we wanted the ball and get the early lead if possible,” Norwalk coach Todd Fox said. “And hats off to our kids. They perfectly executed what we had done all week and were able to come out and score right away. We stopped them and then scored right away again.

“And that offense is not easy to stop, and our defensive staff led by Coach (Pat) Herron did a tremendous job getting those guys ready,” he added.

After another Edison drive stalled near midfield, the Truckers put together a 10-play, 57-yard scoring drive to go up 21-0. Alec Maloney got the three feet needed on fourth-and-1 at the Edison 14. Then Raymore scored from 13 yards out the next play, taking three Charger defenders with him on the TD with 6:36 left in the half that made it 21-0.

Edison again had another opportunity to try and get something going to start the third quarter. A pair of first downs put them inside the Norwalk 40 — but a sack on third-and-long snuffed out the drive.

“Once you get in that hole, it’s tough,” Edison coach Jim Hall said. “We moved the ball early and didn’t capitalize on some drives where we had some decent field position.

“We made some mistakes and had penalties, which we’ve done quite a bit the last couple of weeks,” he added.

After a scoreless third quarter, Norwalk put the game away with a pair of TDs just 44 seconds apart.

Chapin connected with Livingston for a second time, finding the senior receiver on a corner route for a 26-yard scoring strike with 8:59 left in the game.

Trailing 28-0, Edison then fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and the Truckers recovered at the Chargers’ 20. Two Raymore runs covered that distance — the last a 13-yard run to put Norwalk up 35-0 with 8:15 left.

Despite the lopsided win, Norwalk also committed 12 penalties for 110 yards and turned it over once.

“And in this case, unlike the past few weeks, this was more of a good team making things happen,” Fox said of the miscues. “Our guys were being aggressive making blocks.

“We had receivers called for holding a few times, but we’re just happy that Coach (Chris) Harkness has gotten our receivers to block like that. We’re getting better day by day, and that has to continue.”

Raymore ran 19 times for 140 yards with the three scores to pace Norwalk. Chapin was again efficient through the air, completing 17-of-24 passes for 224 yards and two TDs.

Brandon Haraway caught five passes for 76 yards, Livingston caught three passes for 53 yards and Ryan Sowders had four grabs for 48 yards.

For Edison, Carson Ehrhardt ran seven times for 22 yards and caught two passes for 36 yards. Garrett Scott ran four times for 30 yards and caught a 13-yard pass, while Aiden Hayward added added 16 yards on five touches.

“It was every phase tonight,” Hall said. “We didn’t tackle well, though at the end our guys started getting upset and playing a little harder. You can’t simulate some of the stuff we saw in practice though. You have to get on the field to see it. Under the lights in this setting, we had some young guys who had to grow up.

“That’s a nice team (Norwalk) over there with a lot of weapons,” he added. “But we have to make our minds up if we want to be a better team. That comes down to individuals making better decisions. To study and prepare themselves … and as coaches, we have to do the same thing. Everything right now for us is Monday. We’re going to see what we have on Monday.”

Norwalk hosts Shelby next week, while the Chargers travel to Toledo Woodward.

 

Edison   0   0  0  0 — 0

Norwalk 14 7 0 14 — 35

Scoring

N — Trevon Raymore 15 run (Garrison Smith kick)

N — Kaden Livingston 15 pass from Garrett Chapin (Smith kick)

N — Raymore 13 run (Smith kick)

N — Livingston 26 pass from Chapin (Smith kick)

N — Raymore 13 run (Smith kick)

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