Louisville 34 - Hoover 13
September 3, 2009
Louisville makes it three in a row over Hoover, 34-13
Chris Beaven, Canton Repository
LOUISVILLE Never expect Paul Farrah to call any win perfect. The Louisville High School football coach is too much of a perfectionist.
But he couldn’t hide his satisfied smile Thursday night after another Louisville’s convincing win over its old rival.
The reloading Leopards shut down Mr. Football and the Hoover offense while unloading on the Vikings with their own high-powered offense in a 34-13 victory.
A capacity crowd of 8,000-plus at Louisville Stadium and a regional cable TV audience watched senior quarterback Bob Swigert throw five touchdowns passes to five different receivers — four in the second quarter — as Jake Adkins, Joe Poyser and Hunter Potts spearheaded a fierce defensive effort to shut down Erick Howard a third straight year.
Still, Swigert knows Farrah will not toss around excessive praise.
“He’ll probably give a C-minus, if that,” Swigert said with a smile.
Farrah laughed and shook his head in agreement.
“This means a lot to our kids,” he said of beating Hoover for the third year in a row. “It shows they’re coming together and that we’re OK. But we’ve got to get much better.”
For the third straight year, Louisville gave Howard no room to run and often met him with a defender or three behind the line of scrimmage. He has 4,139 yards in his career but gained 45 yards on 19 carries Thursday, giving him 124 yards on 46 career attempts against Louisville.
“We had to come out and hit them from Play 1,” said Adkins, a senior linebacker. “When you play against a back like that, you’ve got to do that. And it was electric out there. But we knew we all had to do our job and take care of business.”
Adkins had three tackles for loss, all against Howard. Potts, a senior linebacker, added two tackles for loss and a sack. Poyser, a senior defensive tackle, had three sacks and a tackle for loss.
“It all starts with our front five,” Farrah said. “Our front five gets penetration, and then our linebackers clean up.”
Louisville’s defense stuffed Hoover’s offense from the outset.
“They made plays, controlled the line of scrimmage, and they beat us every way they can beat us,” said Hoover coach Don Hertler Jr., whose team has two touchdowns in its last 10 quarters against Louisville. “And that loss is all on me, and I’ll get it fixed. We had a lot of mental breakdowns … like we weren’t coached, so that’s all on me.”
Louisville scored on four straight possessions to take a commanding 27-6 lead into halftime
“It was a playoff atmosphere,” Farrah said. “Both teams were wound up. The difference was we made some plays early, and that allowed us to break it open.”
Swigert, who threw for 241 yards, hit eight straight passes at one point in the first half. Three went for touchdowns — 13 yards to Jared Strasser, 16 yards to Lee Ferguson, 28 yards to Cody Stocker.
Hoover fumbled a kickoff to set up the second TD. A goal-line stand led by Adkins set up the third TD on a 96-yard drive. Adkins tackled Howard for losses twice during that stand, including on fourth down.
“You’ve got to be on top of your game when you know he’s running your way,” Adkins said. “You’ve got to fill the hole and be ready for him.”
Hoover cut the lead to 19-6 when Brett Tulodzieski hit Jordan Witt for a 39-yard TD on a fourth-and-17 late in the half. Swigert blocked the PAT, though, and then led Louisville to another score. He fired a 26-yard TD pass over the middle to Jeremy White, who made the grab off a deflection with 27 seconds left.
The Leopard defense continued to dominate in the second half, and Swigert’s fifth TD pass, a 3-yarder to Michael Schooley, helped put the game away.