Route 30 rivals square off when Norwin, Latrobe meet

Wednesday, September 1, 2021 | 5:25 PM

Football coaches always say the most important week to see improvement is between a team’s first and second games.

“It’s when you can have things on film in game situations and you can show the players what was good and what was bad,” Norwin coach Dave Brozeski said. “It’s a time where we as coaches can make adjustments, and for the players, it’s a chance to execute after seeing themselves on film.”

Norwin (0-1) opened the season by falling to rival Penn-Trafford, 35-14. The Knights allowed a 99-yard touchdown run on their first defensive play.

Now, they get set to host to Latrobe on Friday during Armed Forces Appreciation Night. The Wildcats (1-0) didn’t have any problems in their first game, a 61-0 whipping of Derry.

“We executed well in all three phases of the game,” Latrobe coach Jason Marucco said. “The players were locked in all week, and it showed.

“But with that said, we’re looking forward to playing up against a good Norwin team. It’s going to be a challenge and should be a good test.”

Both coaches, in their eighth seasons, said they are looking forward to the challenge of facing an old Foothills Conference and Route 30 rival.

The teams were scheduled to play in 2020, but because of the coronavirus, the game was turned into a scrimmage.

The teams last met in 2015 with Norwin winning 31-0.

Latrobe overpowered Derry in its opener. Quarterback Bobby Fetter was sharp and accurate early, running back Drake Clayton had three runs for 144 yards and a touchdown and slot back/outside linebacker Kyle Brewer scored three ways (receiving, rushing and punt return).

Fetter completed all four of his passes for 144 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for a score.

“There were some things we need to improve on,” Marucco said. “Penalties were No. 1. We look at things we didn’t do well and try to improve on those.”

Brewer also stood out on defense, and Marucco was pleased how the offensive line played, namely left guard Tyler Lynch and left tackle Jacob Brisky.

Brozeski also was pleased with the play of his offensive and defensive lines, especially against Penn-Trafford’s huge line.

Senior tackle Josh Page had 12 tackles.

“Josh was all over the field,” Brozeski said. “The line battled the entire game. We still need to be able to run the ball better.”

Norwin quarterback Luke Levendosky threw two touchdown passes: 3 yards to Noah Vogel and 65 yards to Dom Barca. Levendosky completed 10 of 18 passes for 125 yards and rushed for 69 yards on 14 carries.

The Knights defense had trouble slowing down the Warriors’ running game, but a lot of teams will have that problem.

“Just because this is a nonconference game, we treat every game the same,” Brozeski said. “We want to win and see improvement.”

That’s also what Marucco wants to see.

“We just want to continue to build on the momentum we had against Derry,” Marucco said. “Hopefully, we’ll play just as well or better.”

One other thing Brozeski was glad to see was fans in the stands.

“Walking up the steps from the locker room and seeing the fans, the bands and the cheerleaders was refreshing,” he said.

Latrobe-Norwin Fast Facts

Series: Norwin leads 32-24-1

Last year: Nonconference game was turned into a scrimmage because of covid-19

First game: 1919, Latrobe won, 19-0

First Norwin win: 1921, 7-0

Last 10 meetings

2015: Norwin, 31-0

2014: Norwin, 16-0

2013: Norwin, 21-13

2012: Norwin, 27-14

2011: Latrobe, 28-14

2010: Norwin, 24-7

2009: Latrobe, 31-28

2008: Latrobe, 25-18

2007: Norwin, 42-7

2006: Norwin, 42-25

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at or via Twitter .

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