Springdale remains undefeated with big win over Leechburg

Friday, September 25, 2020 | 10:32 PM

Springdale wasn’t ready to lose to Leechburg for a third straight year, and the Dynamos showed that throughout their WPIAL Class A Eastern Conference matchup.

It took the Dynamos just four plays to score on their first drive of the game. Demitri Fritch completed a 37-yard double pass to Logan Dexter, and then Cavin Kindler rushed for 21 yards before Dexter finished it off with a 2-yard touchdown run.

From there, Springdale (3-0, 3-0) never looked back as it beat the Blue Devils (1-2, 1-2) for the first time since 2017, 45-19.

“Any win in this conference is huge. Every team we play is a monster, and you gotta prepare every game as if it is a playoff game and our guys rose to the challenge tonight,” Springdale coach Seth Napierkowski said.

Fritch started under center for junior quarterback Legend Ausk, who was on the sideline in just his jersey and gym shorts, and the 6-foot-4 senior rose to the occasion, completing seven of his 10 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns.

While the Dynamos were able to hit passes sporadically throughout the night, their real success came on the ground.

Dexter and Kindler rushed for more than 100 yards and combined for three touchdowns on the ground. But as a team, the Dynamos rushed for just under 300 yards, which was a prime example of the physicality they were looking to instill.

“They were more physical on defense. They were more physical on the offensive line. They moved people, and we didn’t move anybody,” Leechburg coach Randy Walters said. “Our backs had nowhere to go, and that’s what won it.”

After Springdale scored its opening touchdown, the Blue Devils stitched together an 80-yard, 15-play drive that ended with Dylan Cook hitting Eli Rich for a 13-yard touchdown pass. A blocked extra point made it 7-6.

Cook completed 27 of his 36 pass attempts for 306 yards and two touchdowns, but his second passing touchdown didn’t come until there was less than a minute remaining in the game. He hit Thomas Burke with a 26-yard pass.

The only other Leechburg score came less than two minutes after halftime when sophomore running back Braylan Lovelace broke a 72-yard touchdown run one play after Fritch connected with Dexter on a 37-yard touchdown pass to start the half.

Other than that, it was all Springdale.

“We knew what was coming. We knew it was a big game, and we knew they were coming,” Dexter said. “It was all going to be about who was more physical, and our line brought it and our defense brought it. Our defense won us this game in my opinion.”

Dexter finished with 129 yards on the ground, 113 in the air and three total touchdowns. He scored his final touchdown with 11 minutes left in the game on a 2-yard run.

Springdale receiver Johnny Utiss scored on a 64-yard touchdown pass from Fritch with just under 9 minutes left in the game, and Kindler capped the scoring with a 23-yard touchdown with 2 minutes left.

“We have the guys that can step in when they need to,” Napierkowski said. “Demitri played one of the best games I’ve ever seen him play offensively, and certainly one of the keys to our success today and even moving forward is we didn’t turn the ball over.”

The Dynamos will look ahead to Greensburg Central Catholic next week, and the Blue Devils will host Jeannette.

Greg Macafee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Greg by email at gmacafee@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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