THORNVILLE — Zanesville simply overmatched host Sheridan with its size Friday night.
The Blue Devils ran for more than 230 yards and held the Generals to 95 total yards in a 42-0 rout at Paul Culver Jr. Stadium.
Leo Crosby led the Zanesville rushing attack with 119 yards and three touchdowns on 12 carries, and Deaunte Goins added 95 yards on 12 carries.
The smash-and-dash duo had plenty of holes to run through against an undersized Sheridan defensive front.
“We focused to see where their push was, and they weren’t coming on the left so we ran a lot of Blue 36. That opened up some tosses,” Crosby said. “The coaches tell us we aren’t always going to pop big plays so you have to work for it. We were able tire them out.”
Zanesville (3-0) used a variation of looks in the backfield. Coach Chad Grandstaff noted his offensive line did its part, adjusting to Sheridan’s pressure.
“We figured out where their stunts were, and the line made the adjustments,” he said. “We have strong backs and a strong line, but we also threw it when we wanted to, not when we had to.”
Grandstaff also was pleased with his defense, which posted a second straight shutout.
However, penalties remain a concern.
“That’s an accomplishment to hold (Sheridan) to no points and do it two weeks in a row,” he said. “We were able to force five turnovers, but we still had too many penalties. We need to clean that up.”
The teams traded punts to open the game, but a 12-yard punt by Sheridan (1-2) on its second possession put the Blue Devils in great field position. They needed only four plays to cover 37 yards, as Crosby capped the drive with a 9-yard touchdown. Aaron Ashby’s first of six extra points made it 7-0 at the 4:50 mark of the first quarter.
The Blue Devils had a chance to go up two scores, but a holding call negated a fourth-down conversion deep in Generals’ territory later in the first half.
However, Zanesville found the end zone on its next possession in the second quarter. Goins took the first play 48 yards, while Crosby went 10 yards then scored from 11 yards out on the next carry for a 14-0 advantage with 4:38 left in the half.
Sheridan tried to answer. Ben Rhodes had the big play of the drive, converting a third-and-6 with a 42-yard gain to the Zanesville 17. The Generals appeared to reach the Zanesville 4 on the next play, but a holding call negated 10 yards of that gain. Trevor Davisson dropped a potential touchdown two plays later, and Ben Kaufman ended the threat by intercepting Sheridan quarterback Dylan Dupler in the end zone.
Kaufman delivered on offense on the second play of the second half. Derek Grandstaff’s pass went through Alessio Amato’s hands and landed in Kaufman’s arms en route to an 80-yard touchdown and a 21-0 lead.
“We were told to get it together at halftime,” Kaufman said. “We took the momentum early in the second half and executed our offense.”
Crosby gashed the Generals for a 47-yard touchdown on the Blue Devils’ next possession.
Later in the third, Derek Grandstaff hit Amato for a 22-yard score then Grandstaff took a lateral from Crosby and ran 13 yards for the game’s final touchdown. He finished 6-of-9 for 119 yards and two touchdowns.
Rhodes highlighted the Generals’ effort with 70 yards on 11 carries. He did not have a rushing attempt in the second half.