Pirates’ gridiron prowess puts game away at the half in 41-13 win over Fairless

Garaway quarterback R.J. Jacobs prepares to unload a deep ball against Fairless in the Pirates' romp over the Falcons. ---- Brandon Yoder Photo

To say that Garaway quarterback R. J. Jacobs is rolling is a massive understatement.

The Fairless Falcons would probably choose not to argue that point. After the half they spent chasing the Pirates in their week two confrontation, the Falcons may not want to see Garaway any time soon.

On Friday, Sept. 3 at Fairless High School in Navarre, the Pirates dealt the Falcons a 41-13 defeat in a contest that was not even as close as the score would indicate.

Garaway posted 21 first quarter points, tacked on another 20-spot in the second period and held a wide 41-0 lead at the half, in a game between two teams that has been very closely contested over the past several seasons.

All Jacobs did in following up his seven touchdown performance in the season opening 47-28 win over Dalton was to go off for another five touchdowns on the Pirates’ first five possessions of the game. That meant he had had a hand in Garaway’s first 12 touchdowns of the season, and it wasn’t until sophomore Brady Winters plowed in from three yards out for the Pirates’ final score of the first half that Jacobs hasn’t been involved in a Pirates’ score.

The Pirates took over the game from the onset, and scored on Jacobs’ 22-yard scramble to pay dirt for a 7-0 lead. After the defense clamped down on Fairless, Jacobs quickly found Ty Hamsher for a passing strike in the end zone and it was 14-0. That lead quickly grew to 21-0 before the first 12 minutes had expired off the clock, as Jacobs tossed a 28-yard scoring strike to speedy wide-out Carson Troyer.

The second quarter provided little relief for the Falcons, much of that courtesy of a smothering Garaway defense, and plenty more of Jacobs on display.

Jacobs hit Winters out of the backfield for a scoring strike, then found Troyer again from 18 yards away to make it 34-0. By the time Winters tromped in from three-yards out, Garaway had built an insurmountable 41-0 lead.

Garaway skipper Jason Wallick unloaded the bench throughout the second half, allowing back-up quarterback Kody Stress to come in and control much of the second half.

Fairless did manage to push across its first score in the third quarter, when Logan Shepherd crushed into the end zone from two yards out. The Falcons tacked on a late score when Jack Laney tossed a 35-yard scoring toss to Kaegen Eubanks, but it was not nearly enough to gain any kind of foothold.

In just over one half of play, Jacobs managed to throw for 239 passing yards, connecting on 19-of-23 passes for the four touchdowns. He added a team-high 43 yards rushing on eight carries, and added one touchdown.

Winters only rushed the ball three times in the game, gaining five yards, but he was a busy guy out of the backfield, hauling in 10 catches for 108 yards to lead Garaway in receiving. Troyer grabbed four catches for 98 yards and the two scores, while Hamsher hauled in three passes for 15 yards.

Getting pushed aside with all of the early offensive fireworks was the stout defensive effort from the Pirates. Ian Hershberger recorded seven solo tackles and three assists while Hamsher added five solo stops to lead the Pirates aggressive defense that felt it had plenty to prove after giving up some big chunks of yardage on the ground to Dalton the week prior.

The big lead allowed Wallick to work in plenty of players on the defensive side of the ball, with 21 Pirates contributing to the statistical column in some fashion.

The Pirates next have a non-conference showdown with a rugged Indian Valley squad that has provided for some fantastic competition over the past number of seasons. The last two seasons have seen the Braves knock off the Pirates 16-13 last year, while Garaway won in thrilling fashion in 2014, securing a last-second 21-20 victory with an incredible defensive stand.

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