OLD FORGE — Brandon Yescavage was a bit agitated.
Old Forge’s senior running back wasn’t thrilled with the Blue Devils’ six-point win on opening night against Lake-Lehman. He was determined to make a bigger splash on Friday against Meyers.
“I was kind of mad,” Yescavage said. “So I was going to take it out on this team.”
Did he ever.
The 6-foot-2 bruiser helped the Devils steamroll the Mohawks, racking up 231 yards and four touchdowns in a 49-6 victory at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
“Couldn’t do it without my line and my fullback,” said Yescavage, who is following in the footsteps of departed all-state tailback Brian Tomasetti. “We were amped up.”
“To replace Brian, hey, you’re not going to do that,” Devils coach Mike Schuback said. “You’ve just got to let Brian’s legacy be his. Now Brandon’s taking over and making his own. So we’re really proud of that. He’s a heck of a competitor.”
It showed as Old Forge (2-0) finished with 388 yards on the ground and took control early, leading 28-6 at halftime.
Shane Schuback triggered the mercy rule at 42-6 midway through the third quarter. The tight end came in motion and took a handoff, getting some excellent blocking for a 26-yard score.
“They’re a physical team,” Meyers coach Corry Hanson said. “And when they kept punching us and punching us, they just broke us down.”
Yescavage’s performance was bookended by two big plays — a pick-six by Jake Manetti on the game’s first drive and a 96-yard dash up the middle for a score by Brandon Vahey in the game’s final minute.
The Devils also picked up a safety in the first quarter when a snap on a punt sailed back into the end zone.
Hanson was upset at how his team handled the adversity.
“Right now, we’re not mentally tough,” Hanson said. “We were in the game early in the first half, and I thought if we caught a touchdown pass that went off our receiver’s hands, it’s 28-14 at halftime and then we come out and play a different ballgame.
“But that’s not the way it came out. We’ve got to make big plays from our playmakers.”
They got a handful from one of them, quarterback Matt DeMarco. The senior stunned the Blue Devils on the Mohawks’ third drive, faking a handoff and making a few quick cuts in the hole on an option keeper, racing 91 yards for his team’s only touchdown.
DeMarco would finish the night with 153 yards rushing, but almost all of the damage was limited to that one huge play and a few nice runs just before halftime.
For the most part, the Devils stayed patient on defense and didn’t allow Meyers (1-1) to break contain on any pitches.
“I honestly thought, the way we play the option and the veer, we’ve been very disciplined,” Mike Schuback said. “We try to work that into practice. We show those kids a lot of that.”
Old Forge 49, Meyers 6
OF — Jake Manetti 35 interception return (kick failed), 10:20
MEY — Matt DeMarco 91 run (kick failed), 6:18
OF — Brandon Yescavage 11 run (run failed), 4:35
OF — Safety, Cal Lisman tackled in end zone, 2:17
OF —Yescavage 1 run (Christian Mozeleski kick), 7:11
OF — Yescavage 2 run (Mozeleski kick), 1:47
OF —Yescavage 21 run (Mozeleski kick), 9:06
OF — Shane Schuback 26 run (Mozeleski kick), 7:10
OF —Brandon Vahey 96 run (Mozeleski kick), 1:00
Team statistics`Meyers`Old Forge
RUSHING — MEY, Matt DeMarco 20-153, Nate Mahalak 8-28, Mark Robinson 1-3, Zahir Dunell 5-(minus-4), team 1-(minus-16). OF, Brandon Yescavage 20-231, Brandon Vahey 7-99, Shane Schuback 2-47, Jake Manetti 5-14, team 1-(minus-1), Joey Gutowski 1-(minus-2).
PASSING — MEY, DeMarco 3-13-0-(minus-2), Dunell 0-1-1-0. OF, Manetti 1-2-0-30.
RECEIVING — MEY, Robinson 2-(minus-1), Tyon Thomas 1-(minus-1). OF, Steven Mascaro 1-30.
INTERCEPTIONS — OF, Manetti.
MISSED FGs — None.