FORT WAYNE — With two shutouts in three weeks, the Chargers have shaken off their first loss of the season and hopefully gained enough momentum to keep the chains moving. Carroll hit the road for the second week in a row Friday — this time for a 42-0 blowout at North Side — to move on from their one-point loss to Snider in week 2.
“We were a little flat when we started. It’s hard to play that high emotion, high tempo after a big game like last week, so it’s understandable that we were a little slow in our start, but once the kids got playing they were in control of the game the entire way,” Carroll Head Coach Doug Dinan said.
Both teams were scoreless in the first quarter, and Carroll quarterback Jeffrey Becker had an early snag after throwing an interception that was caught by the Legends’ Jaylen Harris. The Chargers were quick to shake it off, however, going on a 28-point scoring spree in the second quarter.
Hunter Mertz punched in the first touchdown of the night with a run just outside the goal line. Becker made it 14-0 shortly after with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Layton Mitchell — the first of two end-zone receptions for the senior receiver. Mitchell’s second touchdown came via a 19-yard pass by Becker with just 9 seconds left in the first half.
Mertz had two rushing touchdowns on the night, and Becker grabbed one of his own with 5:07 left in the third quarter. The Chargers’ final touchdown of the night was a pick 6 by Cade Dinan, who ran it in from the 34-yard line.
“I think offensively we did a lot of things, both running the ball and throwing the ball,” Coach Dinan said. “Defensively we played hard, played physical, kept them out of the house, getting a turnover for a touchdown. That’s a big deal.”
In total, the Chargers amassed 324 yards on offense, compared to North Side’s 147. The Legends rushed for just 34 yards on the night.
Becker completed 9 of 14 passes for 174 yards and 2 touchdowns. His longest play of the night was a 41-yard pass to Mason Englert, who led in receiving yards with 78. Mitchell’s 2 touchdown receptions came after an 18-point performance against Snider the week prior.
“The receivers know if they run a good route, (Becker) is going to read the coverage and the route concept and distribute the ball to the guy that’s open, and that’s what you’ve got to have,” Dinan said.
Becker led the Chargers in rushing yards, adding 78 yards to running back Evan Harris’ 56.
Larry Sible recorded a team-high 6 solo tackles, in addition to a sack. Craig McGinnis had a pair of sacks in the win, pushing the Legends’ Ronald Collins back a total of 21 yards.
The Chargers will host Northrop in Friday’s homecoming game. The Bruins improved to 2-1 with a week 3 win over Wayne, 36-25.
“Homecoming is a big game, it’s a big environment and we have to play hard,” Dinan said. “They’re a good football team with athletes playing quarterback, and they’ve got big guys playing on the defensive side. To be able to play at that high level, you have to be able to do it over and over.”