Thomas Jefferson rolls past Ringgold
By Ray Judy
Published: Friday, Aug. 31, 2012, 11:32 p.m.
After failing to reach the WPIAL semifinals for the first time in 13 years last season, Thomas Jefferson opened the 2012 campaign with something to prove.
The Jaguars, ranked No. 4 in Class AAA by the Tribune-Review, jumped on No. 10 Ringgold early and rolled to a 41-6 victory.
After losing two of their most productive offensive weapons to graduation, the Jaguars' new guard stepped up in Week 1.
Senior Joe Carroll was impressive in his debut at quarterback, passing for 192 yards and five touchdowns. Carroll threw for four touchdowns in the first half.
“Joe's still developing and learning some things, and I expect him to get better every game,” TJ coach Bill Cherpak said. “I feel comfortable with him running things. If you want him to put the ball on the spot, he'll put it there.
Carroll capped TJ'S 12-play, 60-yard opening drive with a 9-yard touchdown pass to senior Zach Schademan, who finished with five catches for 96 yards. Jack Mascaro caught three passes for 71 yards and three touchdowns.
Schademan and Mascaro were key players in 2011 and should be an integral part of the Jaguars' offensive attack this season.
“The last couple of years, we'd say we those were down seasons around here,” Schademan said. “We're trying to get it back up to the 2004 level. Our expectations are high — conference title, WPIALs and then states.”
Ringgold will go back to the drawing board after the lackluster start. Senior running back Demetrius Louis was the bright spot for Ringgold, rushing for 140 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries.
Ringgold rotated quarterbacks throughout the game, switching between senior Chris Spahr and sophomore Niko Law. Neither was very effective, as they combined for 78 yards.
“We're still trying to figure out which kid does the right things,” Ringgold coach Matt Humbert said.
Ringgold's biggest problem was TJ's powerful lines that dominated from the start.
“You never want to lose 41-14,” Humbert said. “It's a little embarrassing. But there's nothing you can pout about. There are eight more games to go. We've got to put this one out of our mind and move on to the next one.”
Ray Judy is a freelance writer.
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