Sunday, September 05, 1999

Moeller 19, Warren Harding 0


Another game, another shutout

BY DAVE SCHUTTE
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        The Moeller defense bent but never broke.

        For the second consecutive week, the Crusaders didn't allow a point, and Moeller won 19-0 over the Warren Harding Raiders before a crowd of 7,000 at Galbreath Field.

        “The last time we had a shutout before last week was the 10th game of the 1991 season,” Moeller coach Steve Klonne said. “I think the last time we had back-to-back shutouts was in the early 1980s.”

        Although Warren Harding amassed 118 yards rushing and 89 passing, each time the Crusader defense had their backs to the wall, they came up with the big play.

        A good example was defensive back Joe Zinkan's pass interception at the Moeller 1.

        Stepping in front of the Warren Harding receiver, Zinkan raced 99 yards untouched for a TD with 5:07 remaining that gave Moeller a 13-0 lead while at the same time breaking the spirts of the Raiders.

        “As soon as I saw the ball in the air, I broke toward the spot,” Zinkan said. “I thought I may be caught but once I got to the 20, I knew I would make it. This is my first career TD and a big thrill.”

        Klonne had nothing but praise for Zinkan, a 5-foot-8, 160-pound junior who also wrestles for the Crusaders.

        “Joe is a great competition and plays with a lot of heart,” Klonne said. “But the rest of the defense also played well. John Oscar (linebacker), Jake Holthaus, Matt DePetro, Mike Oakley and Brad Tokarsky were outstanding.”

        The interceptions was Zinkan's second in the game and more than made up for a fumbled punt that the Raiders recovered on the Moeller 35 in the first half, though they but failed to score.

        Leading 7-0 at halftime, Moeller's offense was only able to generate 90 yards during the final 24 minutes, 55 on a Marcus Blanks touchdown run with 3:01 remaining to wrap it up.

        The victory avenges Moeller's 42-20 loss to the Raiders last year in Warren.

        “We didn't play well in Warren last year, but revenge wasn't a motive for us,” Klonne said. “We just wanted to show them how Moeller can play football.”

        The first half was a defensive struggle with both teams tough against the run up, especially up the middle.

        However, Moeller took advantage of a Warren Harding mistake in the secondary to score a touchdown.

        Lined up on the left side, Ryan Hamby slanted across the middle and broke into the open when the Warren Harding defensive backs brushed. In full strike, Hamby took the ball at the 40 and raced into the end zone.

        Warren Harding's only venture into Moeller territory came late in the second quarter.

        There was one turnover in the first half, a pass interception by Zinkan. Warren Harding's Matt Campbell blocked a Moeller punt.

        Warren Harding ....... 0 0 0 0—0

        Moeller ....... 0 7 0 12—19

        M — Mamby 59 pass from Reisert (Murphy kick)

        M — Zinkan 99 pass interception return (kick failed)

        M — Blanks 55 run (pass failed)