Story by Jeff Gallatin
Photos and video by Larry Bennet
In a matchup of 3-1 teams, the Brecksville Bees continued their ascent upwards with a 42-10 victory over Southwestern Conference rival North Olmsted at the Eagles' Drive Morris Field Friday night.
With the win, Brecksville moved to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in conference play. The Bees ended the night tied for first place in the SWC with Avon Lake, a 23-8 winner over Berea-Midpark Friday night.
Brecksville was led by senior quarterback Tim Tupa who hit on 20 of 27 passes and three touchdowns. He also ran for 103 yards and two touchdowns in 12 carries. Tupa's younger brother, sophomore Tyler Tupa, grabbed seven passes for 108 yards and a touchdown.
Senior Nick Shirilla nabbed five passes for 93 yards and one touchdown, while junior Garrett Patterson caught another four for 66 yards and a touchdown.
After the game, Brecksville Head Coach Jason Black was pleased with the results, but still complimented the home team.
"We normally play pretty close games with North Olmsted," Black said. "We knew they're a tough physical football team who would come at us hard.
"To come in here and get a win like this is nice. They are a good, well-coached football team and we're very happy to come in here and get a win."
He said Tupa and the receivers' strong performance was a credit to the players and good coaching.
"Coach (Tom) Tupa teaches them to throw to the open man," Black said. "He did a nice job of following that and distributing the ball. He does a nice job at North Olmsted, and he's 2-0 as a quarterback on this field."
Tyler Tupa said coming away with a conference road victory was gratifying. "We knew they would be fired up after they had that close loss at Westlake last week," he said.
He said his spin move on his 11-yard touchdown grab came about because he was trying to elude close coverage on the play.
North Olmsted dropped to 3-2 overall and 0-2 in the SWC. The Eagles were led by senior quarterback Brad Novak, who hit on seven of 11 passes for 159 yards with one touchdown and one interception, while junior Ben Kurcsak led the ground attack with 86 yards on his 18 carries.
Junior wide receiver Matt Starcovic nabbed three passes, including and 81-yard touchdown from Novak which brought the home crowd out of their seats in the third quarter.
North Olmsted head coach Tim Brediger lauded his opponents after the game.
"We knew they would be very tough with their spread attack, and they certainly showed that tonight," he said. "When we were able to keep Tupa in the pocket, we were able to contain him. But when he got outside the pocket, you saw the results were pretty tough for us.
"He's a fine athlete and they are very well-coached by coach Black and his staff," he added.
Brediger also praised the Bees' athletic skills.
"They are the fastest team we have faced," Brediger said. "We've faced some very good teams, but they are so fast both on offense and defense, and it showed in their performance tonight.
"They are a very well-balanced team. Their offense does very well with their attack, and their defenders just swarm to the ball."
He said Brecksville did a fine job of taking advantage of breaks and converting them to points.
Brecksville scored first blood in the first quarter after senior defensive back Jordan Frisco picked off a Novak throw. Frisco had taken the ball into the end zone, but a holding call on the Bees on the return brought the ball back out to the North Olmsted 11.
But Brecksville wasted little time in getting the touchdown back on the scoreboard. Senior running back Carlo Milano taking the ball into the end zone on the next play from scrimmage, with Tim Tupa converting the extra point to put Brecksville up 7-0.
North Olmsted responded with a drive of its own, with Novak picking up key yardage which led to a 33-yard field goal by senior kicker Ben Lyons.
The rest of the first quarter went by with no scores, but Tupa gained a lot of ground yards to grab his two rushing touchdowns with runs of 39 and 25 yards.
Brediger noted that Brecksville's fourth touchdown was a tough blow late in the second quarter. It came after senior linebacker Jay Rose grabbed a Novak fumble. Shirilla took Tim Tupa's pass into the end zone with a little under 10 seconds left in the first half, with Tupa's conversion kick making it 28-3 at the half.
Patterson opened the second half scoring with an 11-yard touchdown catch of a Tupa pass. North Olmsted came back a couple of series later with Novak and Starcovic's nifty teamup on the 81-yard aerial touchdown. But, Brecksville closed out the scoring with the Tupas teaming up for the 11-yard touchdown.
Both coaches said their teams will be getting ready for next week's action.
"We'll enjoy this for about 24 hours and then we'll be preparing for a tough Amherst team for our Homecoming game," Black said.
"We've obviously got some work to do," Brediger said. "We'll be facing a tough Bay team that took Westlake down to the wire. We've still got the opportunity to go out and play five good football games and we're going to work to do that."
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