Latrobe builds huge 1st-half lead, dominates Derry

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Friday, August 27, 2021 | 11:15 PM


Vince Skillings stood motionless as his grandson, Latrobe sophomore Ja’Tawn Williams, intercepted a Derry pass and raced 45 yards for a touchdown on the final play of the game.

It was about the only thing Skillings could laugh about after Latrobe thrashed his Trojans, 61-0, on Friday night in the high school football opener for both schools.

“He didn’t really say anything to me. He just walked by and smiled,” Skillings said.

Williams, a reserve cornerback, is the son of Skillings’ son with the same name as the player.

It was that kind of a night for Latrobe, which scored early and often on its home turf.

Class 5A Latrobe (1-0) wasted no time asserting itself, scoring on every first-half possession and outclassing Class 3A Derry for a 49-0 halftime lead.

“We were locked in all week for this game,” Latrobe coach Jason Marucco. “I was very happy with how we started.”

Kyle Brewer scored three times in a variety of ways.

After quarterback Bobby Fetter opened the scoring with a 50-yard run, Brewer scored on a 4-yard run on his only carry of the game and a 72-yard punt return before Corey Boerio caught a 46-yard scoring pass from Fetter as Latrobe led 28-0 at the end of the first quarter.

Drake Clayton’s 79-yard touchdown run for Latrobe opened the second-quarter scoring, and the Wildcats added two more scores, a 50-yard pass from Fetter to Brewer and a 13-yard run by Dominic Flenniken.

Clayton finished with three receptions for 122 yards, and Fetter was 4 for 4 for 141 yards and two touchdowns before Marucco began substituting.

“We don’t have time to grow on the learning curve,” Skillings said. “These young guys are the next guys up. We told them, ‘We need you to be physical.’ When it became a JV game tonight, they picked it up a little.”

Derry, which gained its first three first downs on Latrobe penalties, finally earned its first offensive first down late in the second quarter.

The Trojans (0-1) drove deep into Latrobe territory before the Wildcats blocked Chance White’s 40-yard field-goal attempt.

Freshman Alex Tatsch scored on a 41-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter after having an apparent 79-yarder on the same drive nullified by a penalty, one of three Latrobe touchdowns erased by miscues.

Then came Williams’ last-second interception return for some icing on the lopsided victory.

“When we watch film,” Marucco said, “all those penalties are going to show up, and our guys will see that. But, you know, we’ve got 20 seniors, without a doubt, a veteran group. They know we’re facing a tough schedule. They know what ahead.”

Watch an archived broadcast of this game on Trib HSSN.

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