VINCENT - What elements?
Portsmouth certainly was not affected by them. Despite an early drizzle, the Trojans looked like they were playing on a dry field, en route to a 52-16 victory over Warren on Friday. As it has all season, Portsmouth's passing attack chewed up yardage, but the Trojans also moved the ball well on the ground, scoring twice on 1-yard plunges by Wes Jordan.
The Trojans would add two more scores before the half, and led 32-8 at intermission. However, it was Portsmouth's defense that made the difference, keeping Warren to just 90 yards of total offense.
“I was pleased with our defensive effort,” said Portsmouth coach Curt Clifford. “We got caught on that one jet sweep (Warren's first score) and we worked on it - I thought the adjustments coach (defensive coordinator Chuck) Burke made were excellent.”
The scoring started early for Portsmouth, which went 65 yards on its first drive, capped off by Jordan's first score. Jordan would add a two-point conversion to put the Trojans up 8-0. After stopping the Warriors on the next drive, London Malone would put Portsmouth up 14-0 on a 93-yard punt return, Jordan adding two on another run.
The second was more of the same for Portsmouth, as the Trojans scored on their first two possessions, 63- and 51-yard touchdown passes to Corey Reeves. Reeves finished with six catches on the day, totaling 163 yards and three touchdowns. Reeves also had 41 yards rushing on five carries.
Leading the way for Portsmouth was senior quarterback Shane Porter, who was 11 of 17 passing for 254 yards and the three touchdown passes to Reeves. Porter's performance gives him 1,978 yards passing on the season. Jordan had nine carries for 30 yards and two touchdowns. Forrest Johnson had two catches for 55 yards, and Malik White had two catches of his own for 34 yards.
“When you are a spread option football team, and that is what you hang your hat on, you have got to do,” said Clifford. “That is what we do.”
With the win, Portsmouth moves to 8-2 on the year and will now wait to see its playoff fate, as it entered the game at the No. 5 spot in Region 15, with the possibility of playing Pataskala Licking Heights on the road. After three years away from the playoffs, though, it doesn't matter who the Trojans will play, at least to Clifford.
“When you make the playoffs, you play wherever you have to go play,” said Clifford. “We know that Pataskala is a good football team. We don't know much about them, but we will just have to go play.”
The loss ends Warren's season at 3-7.
JOSH HICKLE can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 241.
Portsmouth 16 16 14 6 - 52
Warren 8 0 0 8 - 16
P - Jordan 1 run (Jordan run), 9:20.
P - L. Malone 93 punt return (Jordan run), 5:44.
W - Dunfee 61 run (Call pass from Ellenwood), 4:46.
P - Jordan 1 run (Reeves run), 7:16.
P - Reeves 4 pass from Porter (Porter run), :11.
P - Reeves 63 pass from Porter (run fail), 9:33.
P - Reeves 51 pass from Porter (Reeves run), 6:10.
P - Myers 21 run (run fail), 0:49.
W - Hilverding 23 pass to Cox (Pettit run), :09.
RUSHING - Portsmouth; Reeves 5-41, Jordan 9-30, Porter 5-13, Southern 2-5, Bratchett 1-10, Mallory 2-2, Myers 3-21, Mallory 4-10, Royster 2-10.
PASSING - Portsmouth; Porter 11-17-0 254.
RECEIVING - Portsmouth; Reeves 6-163, Johnson 2-55, White 2-34, Jordan 1-2.
RECORDS - Portsmouth 8-2, Warren 3-7.