BLITZ: Homestead beats Carroll at its own game

Homestead takes the field to battle rival Carroll on October 2. (Photo by Leverage Photography)

Homestead portion of Friday’s box score read like you just finished playing Madden ’21 on rookie.

Evan Ormsby: 466 passing yards and eight total touchdowns, both program records.

Braeden Hardwick: A record 287 rushing yards.

Nate Anderson: Five receptions, 230 yards, four TDs. The yardage also setting a program record.

It was, dare Blitz say…Carroll-esque.

Through the first two-thirds of the season, it was the Chargers that did the utter dismantling of defenses – 48 against Luers, 76 against North Side, 52 on Northrop, 66 last week on South Side.

But in Friday’s 70-41 victory for Homestead, the Spartans gave their rival a dose of their own medicine.

On Homestead’s opening possession of the game, Evan Ormsby misfired a pass that was picked off by Braden Steely.

The Spartans’ offense was not stopped again until the end of the game.

In between, Homestead (6-1) scored on 10 consecutive possessions, with most of the drives not taking more than five plays to reach paydirt.

Homestead’s Evan Ormsby fires a pass downfield during an October 2 game against Carroll. (Photo by Leverage Photography)

Early on, it was Carroll’s complete lack of ability to stop the skinny post that resulted in touchdown passes to Anderson and Jared Kistler.

Later, it was Hardwick who was unstoppable, shaking off arm tackles and accelerating through holes, making defenders miss on the regular and finishing with a pair of scores to go with his school-record yardage.

The Chargers (5-2) tried to keep pace. Becker threw for 255 yards and four touchdowns, but he was also picked off three times.

Becker’s top receiver was also limited as Mason Englert was held to three receptions for 26 yards. Homestead’s corners were solid all night long, with safety help over the top ready to break on the ball wherever Becker threw.

Carroll stayed within striking distance through most of the third quarter, but it was Homestead’s night. The Spartans scored the final 21 points of the game, including both TDs in the fourth quarter as Carroll faded.

In a way, Friday’s result was fitting. Even Blitz was unsure how Homestead’s defense was going to handle an offense that entered the game averaging over 50 yards per game. Only Bishop Dwenger had found a way to slow Becker and company down, but did the Spartans have the beef up front do be as disruptive as the Saints?

Turned out, the defense didn’t have to. While guys like Luke Palmer and Ryan Burton on defense showed out, the Ormsby, Hardwick, Anderson and others stole the show, giving Carroll exactly what it had handed out for the better part of two months – the utterly helpless feeling that whatever you did on defense was not going to be enough.

Homestead’s Ethan Chambers moves the ball up field in an October 2 game against Carroll. (Photo by Leverage Photography)

Homestead finished the night with 765 yards of total offense, another school record. It averaged over 14 yards PER PLAY.

Even some of the most high-powered offenses of the past 20 years at Homestead never put up the numbers seen on Friday. The last time the Spartans scored this many points was in 1996, a 70-21 win over…you guessed it, Carroll.

Not only did Coach Chad Zolman’s team knock off its rival a sixth straight time, but it also sitting pretty with two weeks to go in the regular season.

Big picture, the dominant performance put Homestead in prime position to keep the Victory Bell for a second consecutive year. Games against Wayne and South Side, both 1-6, will be matchups in which the Spartans are heavily favored.

Will the bell be staying on the southwest side of Allen County?

After a record night, Blitz only has two words for the Spartans.

Ding Dong.

These opinions represent those of Blitz and Outside the Huddle. No opinions expressed on Outside the Huddle represent those of any of our advertisers. Follow Blitz on Twitter at Blitz_OTH

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