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Truckers run over Ontario

Mark Hazelwood • Updated Sep 28, 2019 at 1:35 AM

NORWALK — Evan Stumpf never saw it as pressure.

Taking over for an All-Ohio, 2,500-yard running back, Trevon Raymore, the Norwalk senior running back is certainly picking up the slack.

Stumpf ran 13 times for 204 yards and four touchdowns — and caught a 43-yard TD pass from Garrett Chapin — as the Truckers cruised to a 52-7 win over Ontario on Friday at Whitney Field.

With the win, Norwalk — ranked No. 17 in the latest Division III Associated Press state poll — improved to 4-1 overall.

Unofficially, Stumpf has ran for 1,004 yards and 14 TDs on just 98 attempts (10.3 average) through five games.

“I don’t feel like there was pressure, at least not on myself personally,” Stumpf said. “I’m just trying to make the most of it. I knew I could play like this, and it feels good to prove to everyone that I can.”

Norwalk did not score on its opening possession because of a fumble — but it was one of its only missteps of the game. On the second drive, the Truckers quickly moved 53 yards in two minutes, with quarterback Garrett Chapin scoring from 2 yards out at the 4:35 mark.

The first of seven Garrison Smith extra points put the Truckers up 7-0 — the start of a flurry of touchdowns.

Norwalk went for the surprise onsides kick after the TD, and Andrew Mozina recovered for the Truckers at the Ontario 49. On a fourth-and-2, Stumpf went through a gaping hole on the left side for a 41-yard TD run and a 14-0 lead.

“When I see a big hole like that, you don’t want to miss those opportunities,” Stumpf said. “At that point, it’s about as running as fast as you can.”

After the Warriors (2-3) quickly went off the field in three plays, Ethan Phillips returned a punt 20 yards to the Ontario 20. After Chapin connected with Ryan Sowders, Stumpf scored ona 5-yard run at the 1:50 mark of the opening quarter to make it 21-0.

On the Warriors’ next play from scrimmage, Anthony Weisenburger knocked the ball free — right into the hands of teammate Jakob Stebel, who rumbled 18 yards for yet another Norwalk TD at the 1:32 mark.

Early in the second quarter, Ethan Hernandez blocked a punt attempt by the Warriors to give the Truckers the ball at the Ontario 43. The very next play, Chapin connected with Stumpf for a 43-yard TD pass and a 35-0 lead with 10:10 left in the first half.

Josh Neuberger then intercepted an Ontario pass on the next possession, giving the Truckers the ball at the Warriors’ 30. After a chop block penalty pushed Norwalk back to a first-and-goal from the 21 — it mattered little. Stumpf again got into the open field, then dove to the right corner of the end zone for a 21-yard TD with 4:54 left in the half.

His night was capped on the opening drive of the second half. Stumpf ran 73 yards to the Ontario 10 — then scored on a 2-yard run three plays later with 9:14 left in the third to put Norwalk up 49-0.

After Ontario scored a touchdown with 8:06 left in the game, the Truckers closed out the scoring on a 46-yard field goal in the steady rain by Smith with 2:49 left. The kick came one week after a school record 50-yarder in a 38-6 win at Edison.

Chapin was 8-of-8 passing for 115 yards with the TD pass to Stumpf. Sowders caught two passes for 34 yards, followed by Phillips (2 for 23) and Oliver Maloney (2 for 16).

“We keep wanting to get better each week,” Norwalk coach Todd Fox said. “And as long as we can leave the field each week believing that we did, that is what the season is about. That process of taking the little things and getting better. You can’t ask more from our passing game, as well as our offensive line and running game obviously.”

The Truckers have a tough task next week when they visit Bellevue (4-1) in the SBC Lake Division opener.

“There are still some things to get better with, which is important because now it’s a tough game every single week with the SBC Lake schedule,” Fox said. “We feel like we’re in a rhythm now, but we have our work cut out for us every week in the league. We need to continue to make strides to be better by next Friday.”

Ontario   0   0  0 7 — 7

Norwalk 28 14 7 3 — 52

Scoring

NOR — Garrett Chapin 2 run (Garrison Smith kick)

NOR — Evan Stumpf 41 run (Smith kick)

NOR — Stumpf 5 run (Smith kick)

NOR — Jakob Stebel 18 fumble return (Smith kick)

NOR — Stumpf 43 pass from Chapin (Smith kick)

NOR — Stumpf 21 run (Smith kick)

NOR — Stumpf 2 run (Smith kick)

ONT — Ethan Snyder 36 pass from Brock Hill (kick good)

NOR — Smith 46 field goal

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