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By LARRY GOFFINET
PAOLI—Using a variety of weapons, Paoli amassed 414 total yards in a 30-6 PLAC football victory over Perry Central Friday.
The Rams rushed for 255 yards on 45 carries and completed 9 of 16 passes for 159 yards.
Quarterback Lee Wro-blewski, who had been sidelined two weeks with an injury, did most of the passing. But he also caught a 38-yard pass from Garrett Strange—and looked healthy doing it—late in the first half to set up a field goal by Strange.
Strange’s 33-yard field goal with 0:29 left in the first half extended the Rams’ lead to 18-0.
Travis Allen, a bruising 5-foot-10, 201-pound fullback, never scored, but he led Ram rushers with 180 yards on 22 carries, including a 46-yard run in the first quarter.
“He’s the best fullback we’ve seen all year, and that’s one of the top (Class) 2A teams,” said Perry Central Coach Greg Gibson.
The Rams had good field position most of the night, as they dominated play on the line, especially in the first half.
“We just got whipped up front,” said Gibson. “Our line couldn’t open up any seams.
“We played well in the second half. We made some adjustments on our line at halftime. We went more to a five-man look (on the defensive line).”
The Commodores never really got their offense untracked, though they did sustain a 69-yard drive in the third quarter.
Austin LeClere capped that drive with a 3-yard touchdown run with 0:40 left in the period.
That kept the state’s longest streak of games without being shut out alive at 212. The last time the Commodores failed to score was Sept. 8, 1995, in a 34-0 loss to Hancock County.
LeClere had a 14-yard gain on his touchdown drive and gained 12 yards on one play in the first quarter.
But 14 of his 18 carries went for 4 yards or less as the Rams keyed their defense on him and held him to 61 yards.
No one else picked up the slack, with every other Commodore gaining 20 or fewer yards and averaging less than 3 yards per carry.
The Commodores had some success with their passing game early, as Dacota Schaad completed a 14-yarder to Ryan Aders and a 44-yarder to Colten Hedinger for first downs in the first half.
But the passing game also proved inconsistent. Schaad finished 2 for 10 with two interceptions. Another interception was negated by a Paoli penalty.
“That’s something we’ve got to get ironed out,” Gibson said of the passing game.
The Commodores also lost a fumble at the Paoli 25-yard line in the first half when they were driving well and trailing only 8-0.
The Rams responded with a 75-yard touchdown drive, capped by Wroblewski’s scrambling 9 yards for the score.
Wroblewski also threw two touchdown passes, a 62-yard one to Dylan McClintock (actually a short pass over the middle, with McClintock running about 55 yards after the catch) and a 10-yard one to Tanner Wroblewski.
McClintock ran 4 yards for the Rams’ other touchdown.
Perry Central slipped to 4-3 overall, 2-1 in the conference.
Paoli improved to 6-1 overall, including 4-0 in the PLAC, in games it has actually played.
But because the PLAC ruled that Paoli’s declining to play Crawford County will count as a forfeit in conference standings, Perry Central can still tie for the conference title by winning its two remaining games.
The Commodores will host Springs Valley Friday at 7 p.m.