The Press Newspaper
Winless Fostoria hardly stood a chance with the way junior quarterback Jake Matwiejczyk and Woodmore’s “air raid” offense two weeks ago.
Matwiejczyk had the kind of game only a handful of high school quarterbacks ever dream of having, completing 16 of 24 passes for 267 yards and five touchdowns (with one interception) and rushing 10 times for 146 yards and three scores in the Wildcats’ 60-33 rout of the host Redmen.
So what’s it like to account for eight touchdowns in one game?
“It’s an excellent achievement,” Matwiejczyk said, “and I appreciate the hard work and effort my teammates put into the game.”
Third-year Woodmore coach Britton Devier said only two other northwest Ohio programs, Maumee and Ada, run the same type of spread offense as the Wildcats. The coach said his team didn’t game plan any differently for Fostoria than any other team.
“We don’t really change,” Devier said. “We have the stuff we do. Most of our pass plays are good against any coverage. That game plan wasn’t anything special. Knock on wood, we haven’t had but a handful of drops all season.”
The 6-foot, 190-pound Matwiejczyk is getting more and more comfortable in Woodmore’s offense. Through six games he’s completed 108 of 186 passes (63 percent) for 1,289 yards and 15 touchdowns, with nine interceptions. He also has 96 carries for 555 yards and seven touchdowns.
The Wildcats improved to 3-3 and 1-2 in the Northern Buckeye Conference with last week’s win.
“We had a real rough start,” Devier said. “Jake threw six picks the first week, so it’s not like he’s had a perfect season by any means. He’s only thrown three (interceptions) in the last five games. Starting for the first time was nerve-wracking. We simplified things and have really been working on him going through his reads and trying to keep it as simple as we can.”
Devier, who is Woodmore’s quarterbacks coach, said Matwiejczyk was “just a little bit fluttery on his feet and a little nervous” to open the season in place of three-year starter Jon Sandwisch, who graduated.
“The last couple weeks he’s looked exceptional,” Devier said. “He’s done everything we’ve asked of him. Last week he really stepped up and made the right decisions.”
Matwiejczyk said he was nervous and “very excited” to earn the starting job this season.
“Ever since fourth grade, when I started playing quarterback, I’ve been dreaming of playing varsity football,” he said, adding that he wasn’t keeping track of his touchdown total as the game progressed last Friday.
“I’m always focused on what’s happening during the game,” Matwiejczyk said, “but what I’m really focused on is the outcome of the game and how the team performed. I’ve had some other great achievements, but nothing like last Friday night. I saw the openings in the defense and I executed my plays and reads during the game.”
Matwiejczyk completed five passes for 117 yards and two touchdowns to junior receiver Evan Ulinski against Fostoria (0-6, 0-3). Junior Tony Rozzi had five catches for 58 yards and two touchdowns, and Matwiejczyk scored on TD runs of 21, 63 and 25 yards.
Matwiejczyk said his six-interception game in the 45-14 season-opening loss at Port Clinton hurt at the time, but plenty of people have had his back all season.
“Of course it shook my confidence,” he said. “My teammates and coaches were very supportive and that allowed me to relax and just play my game. I needed to study defenses a lot better. I needed to slow the game down and focus on what I need to do to get better and to help my teammates out.”