A 34-22 Dukes win over New London Friday night was the team’s first victory in nearly two years and amounted to a cheerful home opener on Dickson Street.
Wellington (1-2) finished 0-10 last season and had last won Oct. 21, 2016.
Thoughts of a difficult 2017 were wiped away by quarterback Ben Higgins’ pair of scoring tosses and 168 passing yards, most of which went in the direction of receiver Jayden Skinner. The sophomore’s 146 yards on six catches, including two touchdowns, was one of this week’s best area performances.
Junior running back Mason McClellan added 125 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries.
The Dukes opened scoring in the first quarter when Higgins connected with Nick Laposky on a 13-yard touchdown pass, which was followed by a three-yard run for six by Kaleb Taylor in the second quarter. McClellan’s rushing score made it 20-8 Wellington going into halftime.
Skinner’s touchdowns both came in the third quarter: a 49-yard halfback pass from Parker Adler and a 31-yard strike from Higgins.
New London (0-3) scored a pair of late touchdowns after the game was in Wellington’s hands.
Next up for the Dukes is a road trip to Clearview before two home games against Lutheran West and Buckeye.
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.