Kiski Area football christens stadium with win over Allderdice
Kiski Area opened its new stadium in style, with defense and special teams leading the way to a 24-9 victory over Allderdice to christen Richard J. Dilts Stadium.
Senior Drew DiNunzio-Biss scored the first touchdown in the new digs with a 1-yard burst in the first quarter, and the Cavaliers defense tackled the Dragons for losses 14 times.
Troy Kuhn picked up a fumble on a bad punt snap and raced 17 yards for a touchdown, and Jack Colecchi’s punt return set up the final touchdown.
To that point, the defending City League-champion Dragons (0-1) stayed within striking distance.
“That team’s a very talented football team,” Kiski Area coach Sam Albert said of Allderdice. “They have skill at every position. There’s speed all over the field.”
The victory matched the Kiski Area win total for last season, but the Cavaliers are looking for more.
Said Albert: “I’m proud of our kids. They looked like they were going to come back, but our defense stepped up. This will hopefully get us on the right track.”
With Kiski Area nursing a 10-6 lead early in the third period, a snap went over the Allderdice punter’s head. Kuhn scooped up the loose ball and went untouched into the end zone.
On the ensuing kickoff, Rashawn Harvey’s 75-yard return gave the Dragons the ball on the Kiski Area 10. But the Cavaliers held, forcing a 21-yard field goal by Henry Bump to cut the Kiski Area lead to 17-9.
A 40-yard punt return by Colecchi partially was nullified by a penalty. But three plays later, Colecchi took a power sweep 31 yards to the Dragons 22.
On third down, quarterback Ryne Wallace found tight end Dane Fitzsimmons on a slant left for 14 yards, and the Cavaliers were in control 24-9 with 4 minutes, 48 seconds to go.
The Dragons, who won their first City title in 50 years last November, lost 20 seniors from that team.
“It was a good contest up until the third quarter,” Allderdice coach Jerry Hazlett said. “We made a big mistake on the punt for a touchdown. That kind of hurt, but the last run by Colecchi, our defensive end turned his shoulder, which hurt the play.”
Tracey Morris returned kicks of 24 and 42 yards.
“Jack and Tracey Morris, when you put the ball in their hands, they’re deadly,” Albert said. “So we were proud. We gave up that one big return, so we’ll have to work on that.”
Said Hazlett: “At times, offensively, we didn’t do too well. Defensively, we played well until the middle of that fourth quarter.”
DiNunzio-Biss was happy to get his name in the record books with the first touchdown.
“We worked really hard to come out here and prepare for this game,” DiNunzio-Biss said. “It feels good to set the culture.”
The senior rushed for 85 yards and had a stellar game at linebacker.