July 23, 2016

Mostly clear

Mustangs out of the Woods


With big-play wide receiver D.J. Woods out with a sore back, Strongsville quarterback Tim Kamczyc completed passes to seven different players as the Mustangs rolled to an easy 38-7 Northeast Ohio Conference Valley Division win over Medina.

The Mustangs (4-2, 1-0), who beat the Bees (2-4, 0-1) for the 19th straight time, finished with 485 yards total offense, with Kamczyc completing 21-of-25 passes for 270 yards and two touchdowns.

“Their quarterback was very poised,” Medina coach Greg Reed said. “They’ve got so many talented players, sometimes it looked like we were playing with seven or eight guys on defense.”

Indeed it did, as Kamczyc’s toughest choice was often which wide-open receiver to throw the ball to. Six Mustangs — Josh Scott (3 receptions, 61 yards), Alex Kovach (3-51, 2 TDs), Bobby Kaminski (3-50), Jeff Hajdin (4-49), Jovon Anderson (3-36) and Steve Gaydos (4-34) — caught at least three passes for 30 yards against a Bees secondary that was missing in action most of the night.

“We just got ’em in wide-open places,” Kamczyc said. “It just worked for us.

“Losing a great player like D.J. Woods is always going to hurt, but we were looking for some other guys to step up. All the guys that played did a great job tonight.”

Toss in 151 yards rushing and two touchdowns by 5-foot-11, 205-pound running back Eric Stoyanoff and the Mustangs didn’t miss a beat without Woods, a big-time Division I college prospect who is being recruited by the likes of Nebraska.

“This might be a blessing, to be honest,” Strongsville coach Russ Jacques said. “Sometimes you lock into him too much. This might give us better balance.”

The game was scoreless after the first period, but the Mustangs put up 21 points in the second quarter en route to rolling up 303 yards total offense in the first half. At that point, the 6-6, 190-pound Kamczyc was 13-of-15 for 155 yards and a TD, while Stoyanoff had rushed 14 times for 126 yards and two scores.

“They’re a better team than us,” Reed said. “They’re quicker and they’re stronger up front. It showed.”

To the Bees’ credit, they didn’t quit. Jake Arthur’s pick of Kamczyc led to a 12-play, 65-yard drive that culminated in Pat O’Boyle’s 5-yard touchdown pass to Ronnie Stout.

That drive was kept alive by a fake punt on fourth-and-4 at the Strongsville 44, but a similar attempt on Medina’s next possession failed, leading to a four-play, 37-yard Mustangs touchdown march that made it 28-7 early in the fourth quarter.

Strongsville added a 22-yard field goal by Nate Freese and a 47-yard interception return for a TD by Jeff Gory to complete the scoring.

“In the second half, we did a nice job,” Reed said. “They’re just a good team. They had too many weapons — even without Woods.”

Rick Noland About Rick Noland

Rick Noland is the Cavs beat writer for The Gazette and the author of "Over Time," a compilation of stories he's written in more than 30 years as a journalist. He can be reached at 330-721-4061 or rnoland@medina-gazette.com. Like him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.