Prep football: Switzer's return paves way for rout
ST. ALBANS, W.Va. - George Washington put all hands on deck as every eye watched how reigning Kennedy Award winner Ryan Switzer performed Friday night against St. Albans in his return from a concussion suffered in Week 1.
Five different Patriots scored in an offensive showcase, but Switzer commanded attention in expected fashion as George Washington romped to a 68-23 win at Crawford Field. Switzer finished with 10 carries for 231 yards and three rushing touchdowns.
"It felt really good running," Switzer said of his status returning to the field. "I got to set the cruise control a little bit on a couple of those long ones, but yeah, I'm back."
Switzer set the tone early with touchdown carries of 60 and 56 yards, his second and third touches of the game. Switzer added a 76-yard touchdown rush later in the first quarter.
The No. 4 Patriots' offense rallied behind Switzer's performance. GW scored on each of its first six possessions. The Patriots (2-1) added another score on a 47-yard interception return by Zach Malone.
In addition to Switzer's three first-half touchdowns, Jacob Jackson scored twice on runs of 60 and 2 yards. Trevor Bell hit Trevon Johnson for a 29-yard touchdown and Jordan Clay for a 2-yard score on the other first-half Patriots touchdowns as GW clicked in all forms.
By halftime, the Patriots led St. Albans (0-3) by a score of 55-7. Michael Cain provided the Red Dragons' score on a 1-yard touchdown rush.
Patriots Coach Steve Edwards Jr. said he was pleased with the quick start.
"We'll play it any way we can, but we're like everybody else - we want to get out there and get on somebody as best we can, and then see if we can't keep things going," he said.
Moreover, Edwards said he was pleased how GW remained focused in the second half.
"The kids were blocking real well and we were able to get some guys out in space and get some kids to outrun people," he said. "We had a speed advantage tonight, and that was evident, and our kids were able to take advantage of it."
Bell passed for his third touchdown of the game on a 17-yard strike to Austin Giacomo, while Malone added his second 47-yard interception return for a touchdown in the second half.
For St. Albans, Cain posted a career day, with another two touchdowns after halftime. Cain finished with 15 carries for 100 yards and three scores.
In the end, the Patriots, and mainly Switzer, took the limelight, though.
GW was certainly glad to welcome Switzer back, too.
Switzer left during the first half during a 36-24 Week 1 win against South Charleston after sustaining a concussion and injuring his shoulder. Switzer sat out in last week's 21-14 loss to Ashland Blazer (Ky.), a game that ended GW's 27-game regular-season winning streak.
George Washington next plays host to Hurricane 7:30 p.m. Friday, while St. Albans visits Nitro 7:30 p.m. Friday.