BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
The Wolves dominated the field in their home opener against Southfield Arts & Technology on Friday night for their fourth win, 56-27.
“The kids played extremely well,” said Kurt Richardson, longtime head coach for Clarkston Varsity Football. “Other than the four penalties we had which helped them in amount of drive. Other than that, the kids played great. That’s a very explosive offense, got a couple of picks.”
He added quarterback Mike DePillo and running back Ethan Clark were outstanding but it was a complete team win.
“We need to give the offensive line some credit,” Richardson said, adding there were a lot of questions with Rocco Spindler and Garrett Dellinger graduating. “They are getting better every week and doing lots of good things.”
He noted as the line improves there have been less penalties.
“We had a lot of holds at the start of the year – they have eliminated that,” Richardson said. “They are just getting better every day. A part of it has to do with the scout team giving them good looks in practice. Those kids don’t get enough kudos either. The secondary did pretty well – that is a potent passing game. We put some heat on them. Everybody did a lot of good things. It was a total team win.”
DePillo agreed, adding, “We played really good team football. Everybody got their fair share of touches. We came out to a real hot start and I think that worked to our favor because we got a two to three touchdown lead and Southfield really folded. We never let up.”
The Wolves opened the scoring with a 37-yard touchdown run from Ethan Clark less than three minutes into the game.
The next touchdown was from Michael Hein off a 7-yard pass from DePillo with 2:56 remaining in the the first quarter, putting the Wolves’ 14-0.
The Warriors closed the gap with a touchdown 15 seconds into the second quarter.
Clarkston responded with another touchdown from Clark off a 51-yard pass from DePillo with 10:22 left in the quarter.
The Warriors started to make their way to score again but were stopped when Hein intercepted a pass with 8:32 on the clock, giving possession to the Wolves in their territory.
Fifty seconds later Lucas McKinney scored on a 59-yard pass from DePillo.
With 3:41 left in the half, Clark struck once more on a 67-yard run and with a 15-yard touchdown run from McKinney, the Wolves closed the first half with a 42-14 lead.
The Wolves scored twice in the second half as Clark had a touchdown off a 18-yard pass with 2:40 remaining in the third quarter. Davis York scored on a 87-yard touchdown run with 8:41 left in the game.
DePillo went 7-for-9 in passing for 172 yards. McKinney caught three passes for 100 yards and Clark caught two passes for 59 yard.
Clark was the leading rusher, running the ball 195 yards on 16 carries. York carried the ball three times for 95 yards; McKinney carried the ball twice for 29 yards; and DePillo carried the ball for times for 27 yards.
Edward Langton went 8-for-8 in PATs.
Evan McClorey led defense with five tackles and 15 assists. Ian Olsen had four tackles and six assists. Desman Stephens had three tackles and three assists. Kohl Jarvis had two tackles and one assist and Frank Schuster had two tackles. Caden Ladd had one tackle and six assists; Mason King had one tackle and four assists and Caleb Stalworth had eight assists. Jaylen Wilson had an interception and one assist.
The bonus to the night was the amount of fans in the packed stadium after last year’s COVID restrictions were lifted.
“It was great,” Richardson smiled. “It was awesome. You turn around and look and see everybody up there. It’s been so long.”
“It’s always great playing your first home game,” DePillo said. “We hadn’t played one in three weeks so to come out here and get a win on the home turf is really great. The first time in two years we had a full stadium and it was just an awesome atmosphere.”
The Wolves (4-0, 2-0 OAA Red) head to Oxford (1-3, 1-1) for the Wildcats’ Homecoming game on Friday.
“We just have to take care of what we can do,” DePillo said. “We have to play our style of football and we will be good.”
Kick off is 7 p.m. at Wildcat Stadium, 745 N. Oxford Road.