Sunday, October 28, 2012

Updated playoff seeds predictions after week 9

So after week 9 has been completed, my predictions remain the same. This is the way I see things falling after week 10 is done, but there are some key games that could change the landscape a little bit. Here's what I have after week 9 with the predicted average points the teams will finish with in their schedules this fall.
Note: This is all speculation and by no means is official or final.

1. Downingtown East (143)
2. Ridley (141)
3. Pennridge (134)
4. Plymouth-Whitemarsh (129)
5. CB South (121)
6. Pennsbury (117)
7. Unionville (115)
8. Coatesville (108) the Red Raiders would win the tiebreaker with Rustin due to record vs. common opponents.
9. Rustin (108)
10. Garnet Valley (107)
11. Perk Valley (102)
12. Haverford (99)
13. Spring-Ford (98)
14. Neshaminy (96)
15. Abington (92)
16. Downingtown West (88)

There are some big games around the District this upcoming weekend.

Starting locally, if Downingtown East would lose to West Chester Henderson, they'd likely settle in at 4.

Unionville travels to Kennett on Saturday. Kennett will likely be on the outside looking in with a loss to the Indians. If they can manage a win they could vault up to the 11-12 seed range, and even pass Unionville. The Indians should get in, win or lose, but a win would get them a first-round home game probably.

Downingtown West has a Saturday game, as well, at Bishop Shanahan. Depending on how things go Friday, this game is pretty much do or die. A loss and the Whippets will miss the playoffs for the 3rd straight season. They will have their eye on a couple games Friday night for certain, starting in Souderton, who hosts North Penn.

If Souderton can knock off a North Penn team that needs a ton of help to sneak into the playoffs, it will jump Downingtown West, to around 13-14, knocking the Whippets out. A North Penn win would give it around 85 points, and that would only get the Knights in with losses by Kennett, Wissahickon and West.

Wissahickon is playing a 3A playoff team, Upper Moreland (6-3). If the Trojans can get a win there they have a good chance of bumping the Whippets, as well.

Garnet Valley and Haverford play a huge Central League matchup. Now, I'm going with the Jaguars because they have played more big games in recent years and have some additional motivation that may show itself after the season, but Haverford is a very good team and I don't think many would be surprised to see the Fords win their 9th game this season. If Haverford does win, it could pass Unionville, forcing a Unionville-Coatesville matchup. A Fords' win would also push the Jaguars to the brink, giving them around the same number of points as the Whippets would have.

The final game to watch is Perk Valley (7-2) against Spring-Ford (8-1). The Vikings lost a tight one against undefeated Pottsgrove last Friday. I'm going with Perk Valley to rebound, but it wouldn't be a major upset if the Rams were winners here. If so, Spring-Ford would be in the same point range as Unionville, and potentially Haverford, if both win.

In the 3A, it looks like Henderson is a lock to make the 8-team bracket, but a loss to Downingtown East probably sends them on the road off the bat.

Nate Heckenberger

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Rustin suffers first loss of season, falls in district quarterfinals to C.B. East


WESTTOWN - It’s been a nightmare for the top seeds in the District 1 Class AAA boys soccer tournament. One by one, they’ve all fallen by the wayside.
Out of the top seven seeds, just No. 1 ranked West Chester Rustin remained alive on Saturday night in the hunt to capture the district championship.
Not anymore, thanks to a battle-tested Central Bucks East squad who has crashed more than its share of parties in the post-season over the years.
The No. 8 seeded Patriots were the latest to slay one of the giants on Saturday night, as they stunned previously undefeated Rustin by a score of 2-0 in their quarterfinal round District 1 Class AAA match.
Senior forward Ben Marks scored both goals, each coming on set pieces in the second half to send C.B. East (15-3-2 overall) into the district semifinals for the sixth straight year. By making the final four of the tournament, the Patriots also earned a PIAA playoff berth for a remarkable sixth year in a row.
C.B. East is the highest remaining team alive in the district title chase, and they’ll face No. 13 Souderton in the semifinals on Wednesday night at a neutral site and time to be announced. The other semifinal game will pit No. 15 Pennsbury against No. 19 Abington.
“We knew coming in that Rustin was a great team,” said Marks, “but once the game starts seeds don’t mean anything at all.”
West Chester Rustin (17-1-1), the Ches-Mont League champions, is still alive in the post-season as the Golden Knights now fall into the consolation round. They are one of four teams who are vying for the fifth and final PIAA berth. They’ll host No. 7 North Penn on Tuesday.
The Golden Knights never really seemed themselves right from the start. Eventually, it caught up with them.
After a scoreless opening half in which neither team was able to really muster any serious scoring threats, Marks scored on a direct kick from just outside the top of the box with 35:28 remaining to give the Patriots a 1-0 advantage. He struck a terrific shot on the play, burying the ball into the top right corner.
If that goal was a momentum shifter, not long after Marks delivered the back-breaker. With 20:41 left he again scored off a direct kick, this time from the right corner near the end line, as the ball magnificently found the top left corner to give his team a commanding 2-0 lead.
“On the first one I looked to one corner of the net, and then I looked to the other,” said Marks. “Their goalie was kind of stationary, and then he leaned to the inside post, so I hit it to the outside post. It was a great feeling seeing it go in because we knew how important it was going to be to get that first goal.”
It was a disappointing loss for the Golden Knights, whose usually high-powered offense was frustrated all night long.
“We were just totally out of character from a tactical standpoint,” said Rustin coach Dave Tordone. “We played the way they wanted us to play -- continually knocking the ball long.
“I told our kids if we give them restarts they are going to nick us, and that’s exactly what they did. To their credit Marks hit two great balls.”
Central Bucks East coach Mike Gorni said his squad’s game plan coming in was to try and disrupt Rustin’s first touches.
“They are a really good technical passing team,” said Gorni. “We played with great team shape on defense, and we tried to play outward throughout.
“[Rustin] is a great team, and this was an unexpected win for us. This is a very big night for our program, making the state tournament for the sixth year in a row is quite an accomplishment.”

Central Bucks East 2, W.C. Rustin 0
C.B. East     0 2 -- 2
W.C. Rustin     0 0 -- 0
C.B. East goals: Marks 2.
Goalie saves: Nesteruk (CBE) 8; Lockfeld (WCR) 6.

Geiss, Patriots hold off Shanahan for wild win


EAST WHITELAND – Heading into Saturday’s nonleague showdown with Bishop Shanahan, Great Valley quarterback Chris Geiss wanted to enjoy every second of his last Homecoming start.
Thanks to 29 of the best seconds of his career, Geiss sent a raucous crowd home smiling.
After a costly mistake by the Eagles, Geiss threw a 45-yard touchdown pass and returned an interception 41 yards for a score on consecutive plays to break open a tie game in a half-minute span just before intermission as the Patriots (5-4) built a big lead and staved off a spirited second-half comeback from Bishop Shanahan for a 26-21 victory at Great Valley. Mix in another long touchdown pass and one of the season’s most breathtaking highlights, and Geiss finished his home career on a high note.
“It’s a big win for the seniors,” Geiss said. “Homecoming is always a good game to try to win with the crowds here. Now we get to celebrate tonight.”
For a while, it looked like the celebration was going to start early. Geiss connected with Sean Fitzpatrick for a 59-yard strike on Great Valley’s first drive of the second half, staking the Patriots to a 26-7 lead. The Eagles, however, weren’t ready to surrender.
Justin Cook nearly brought Shanahan (3-5) all the way back on the strength of his right arm, throwing for 233 yards and three touchdowns- two of them to tight end Cody Smith- with no interceptions. The second, a beautiful 16-yard fade to the corner of the end zone, brought Shanahan to within 26-21 with just under 11 minutes to play. He got the ball back with 1:27 to play and a chance to win, driving the Eagles from their own 7 to near midfield. But Cook was flushed from the pocket on fourth down and brought down well short of the sticks as the Patriots finally locked up a wild win.
“Justin played well,” said Shanahan coach Paul Myers. “It’s unfortunate that it had to end that way at the end of the game.
“We didn’t do what we had to do to win the game.”
If not for a devastating first-half sequence, the game could have ended quite differently.
Facing fourth-and-11 near midfield with 40 seconds remaining in the second quarter, the Eagles appeared primed to send the game into halftime tied at 7. That is, until Shanahan didn’t get its punter on the field and snapped the ball to up-back Vince Angelini, resulting in no gain and a bizarre turnover on downs. The Patriots took over at the Eagles’ 45 and wasted no time cashing in, Geiss finding River Johnson behind the defense for a long touchdown and a 13-7 lead with 30 seconds left in the half.
Great Valley had all the momentum, and it seemed likely that the Eagles would elect to take a knee when they took over at their own 37 on the ensuing kickoff. Instead, Shanahan took to the air, looking to get into field goal range for strong-legged kicker Colin Johnson. Instead, the decision took the air out of the Eagles’ sideline.
Cook dropped back and swung a pass to Jeff Zebrowski in the flat. The ball sailed through his hands and into the waiting arms of Geiss, who doubled as a defensive back with several Patriots nursing injuries. Geiss burst down the sideline and weaved his way through the pursuit and to the house for a back-breaking pick-six with eight seconds left in the half to put the Patriots ahead, 20-7.
“It was huge,” said Great Valley coach Mike Choi. “I was fortunate. Chris got put into the secondary this week because we had some injuries, and I was really confident in him. Not playing the whole season, you get a little worried about how he’s going to respond. I tell you what, he’s a football player.”
Instead of a tie game and the ball to start the second half, Shanahan found itself behind by 13 in the blink of an eye.  
“The last minute and a half of the first half was the difference in the game,” Myers said. “We made two big mistakes.”
The Patriots came out in their blue jerseys Saturday afternoon, but a litany of penalties and mental mistakes had Choi wearing a bright shade of red for much of the contest. Great Valley was flagged 12 times for 150 yards on the day, one of which nearly cost the Patriots the lead as a wild sequence unfolded late in the game.
With Shanahan facing a third-and-15 from the Patriots’ 44, Izaiah Colon sacked Cook for a six-yard loss, forcing the Eagles into a punting situation midway through the final period. Instead, Shanahan got the down back – plus 10 yards- when a Patriot player lost his helmet and returned to the field for the next play. The penalty made it a manageable third-and-five for the Eagles, who nearly picked up the first down on a Cook scramble. But on fourth-and-one from the 30, Cook couldn’t handle the snap and lost a yard, giving Great Valley the ball back. The Eagles’ defense eventually forced a punt, giving Cook one last chance to traverse 93 yards in 87 seconds without a timeout. He drove the Eagles to the 45, but that was all as the Patriots celebrated an exhausting victory. 
“It was a challenging game,” said Choi. “What I preach to our kids is that the game of football is about momentum and adversity. You’re going to have momentum that’s going to be on one side or the other, and you’re going to face adversity. The good teams find a way to get through that and come through with the plays that they need.”
Smith (seven catches, 82 yards) and Zebrowski (six catches, 101 yards, TD) each had monster days for the Eagles in defeat. Zebrowski’s 23-yard touchdown catch on fourth-and-eight brought Shanahan to within 26-14 late in the third quarter. Smith, meanwhile, was all over the field, making 12 tackles on defense in addition to his two touchdown receptions.
“He played awesome,” said Myers. “He was all over the field. He’s only a sophomore, so I’m happy to have two more years of him.”
Great Valley only has Geiss for two more games, but the 6-3 signal-caller gave Patriots fans a play to remember early in the second quarter. Geiss took off on a scramble from the Eagles’ 41, rumbling all the way down to the 10-yard line. With a Shanahan tackler draped all over him, Geiss pitched the ball to Connor Middleton, who took it into the end zone for a spectacular score that tied the game at 7.
“That was just schoolyard ball,” said Geiss, who finished with 54 yards on the ground, plus two scores and 130 yards through the air. “I saw (Middleton) as I was getting tackled, and he got a touchdown out of it, so I know he’s happy about it, too.
“He was aware and he made the play. It was awesome.”

Great Valley 26, Bishop Shanahan 21
Bishop Shanahan     7 0 7 7 -- 21
Great Valley     0 20 6 0 -- 26
BS-C. Smith 21 pass from Cook (Johnson kick)
GV-Middleton 10 lateral run (Cavanagh kick)
GV-Johnson 45 pass from Geiss (kick failed)
GV-Geiss 41 interception return (Cavanagh kick)
GV-Fitzpatrick 59 pass from Geiss (kick failed)
BS-Zebrowski 23 pass from Cook (Johnson kick)
BS-C. Smith 16 pass from Cook (Johnson kick)
Team Totals
    BS     GV
First downs     13    10
Yards rushing     -3    177
Yards passing     233    129
Total yards    230    306
Passing     23-34-0    5-7-0
Fumbles-Lost     1-1    0-0
Penalties    5-40    12-150
Punts-Avg.     2-41.0    5-37.8
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - BS: Cook 17-4; Harper 3-(-2); Angelini 3-(-5). GV: Temple 13-88; Geiss 12-54; Johnson 4-24.
PASSING - BS: Cook 23-34-0, 233 yards, 3 TDs. GV: Geiss 5-7-0, 130 yards, 2 TDs.
RECEIVING - BS: C. Smith 7-82, 2 TDs; Zebrowski 6-101, TD; Roselli 5-46; Oakes 3-2; Angelini 1-2. GV: Fitzpatrick 3-79, TD; Johnson 1-45, TD; Lamb 1-6.
SACKS - BS: Gueriera. GV: Colon 2, Slaats, McGowan.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Rymiszewski's monster game leads Henderson

Journal Register News Service

WEST CHESTER – You couldn’t have scripted it any better for running back/wide receiver Spencer Rymiszewski. Amassing over 250 total yards and four touchdowns in front of a packed house on senior night is the storybook ending to a career that all athletes dream of.
Rymiszewski’s contributions were more than enough to power Henderson past Avon Grove, 42-9, on a chilly evening at J. Oscar Dicks Stadium. The senior proved to be quite versatile during the contest, eclipsing the century mark both on the ground and through the air.
“When you’ve got a special guy like number eight (Rymiszewski), he can make some plays for you even if things aren’t blocked exactly right, even if the play breaks down a little bit,” said Henderson head coach Steve Mitten. “He’s that special kind of player, who will just make big plays.”
Big may be an understatement. Rymiszewski tallied 252 yards on a mere 14 touches. Try as they might, there was little for the Red Devils (1-4 Ches-Mont National, 1-8 overall) to do when the opposition boasted an offensive weapon that can produce 18 yards every time he touches the ball. Such numbers are appropriate for a young man drawing a lot of attention from Ivy League schools and other FCS programs. 
With the win, the Warriors (3-2, 7-2) locked up a spot in the upcoming district one class AAA tournament.
“We want to get to the district championship of course, and do something that this school’s never done before,” said Rymiszewski. “This means a lot, having been to the playoffs last year and losing in the first round. We really want to go far and get this district championship, for sure.”
A sliver of doubt may have briefly entered the Warriors’ minds, as the underdog Devils took the opening kickoff right down the field on the opening possession of the game. The drive stalled at the Henderson 16, forcing Avon Grove to settle for a 33-yard field goal from junior Anthony Scarpato.
The Devils’ only lead of the night would be short lived, as just two minutes later, Rymiszewski scored on an electrifying run for a 7-3 Warrior lead. Taking the ball on a toss left, he stutter-stepped a defender on the edge, cut back against the grain, and turned on the jets for the 46-yard touchdown.
Two possessions later, senior quarterback James Bady took a keeper 15 yards off right tackle to push the lead to 14-3. In the second quarter, Bady and Rymiszewski hooked up for two huge, game-changing plays. First, the two connected on a 60-yard fly pattern, on which Rymiszewski was all alone behind the Avon Grove secondary. Then, on the final play of the half, Bady was able to hit a Hail Mary pass. Rymiszewski caught the tipped ball at his knees, and strolled into the end zone for the 47-yard score as time expired. Henderson took a comfortable 28-3 advantage into the locker room.
The Warriors received the second half kickoff and went right back to work. On a fourth-and-four, Rymiszewski added his fourth score of the evening on a sweep left. Despite the entire Devil defense stacking the box, he was able to get around the corner, through the first wave, and crossed the goal line from 34 yards out. Three minutes later, sophomore tailback Tre Green instituted the running clock by waltzing in from the five on a toss left, making the score 42-3 in favor of the hosts.
Avon Grove did register a score late on a beautiful 27-yard fade down the left sideline from junior quarterback Tanner Peck to senior Jared Braxton, on which the wideout outfought a defender for the ball in the back of the end zone.
Henderson’s spot in the AAA playoffs is now secure, but first things first – an opportunity to exact some revenge against the team that ousted them the previous year, undefeated Downingtown East.
“You really have to play a perfect game, then get a couple breaks,” said Mitten. “Coach (Mike) Matta, (quarterback Kyle) Lauletta, (receiver Jay) Harris, and all those guys over there are unbelievable – an unbelievable team, and it’ll be a great challenge for us to go against them.”  

Henderson 42, Avon Grove 9
Avon Grove       3      0      0      6     -    9
Henderson        14    14    14     0     -   42
AG–Scarpato 33 field goal
H–Rymiszewski 46 run (Engle kick)
H–Bady 15 run (Engle kick)
H–Rymiszewski 60 pass from Bady (Engle kick)
H–Rymiszewski 47 pass from Bady (Engle kick)
H–Rymiszewski 34 run (Engle kick)
H–Green 5 run (Engle kick)
AG–Braxton 27 pass from Peck (pass failed)
Team Totals
                       AG             H
First downs            14             12
Yards rushing          133           259
Yards passing          62            147
Total yards            195           406
Passing                7-18-1        5-7-1
Fumbles-Lost           4-1            1-1
Penalties              9-85           8-80
Punts-Avg.             5-29.2        2-28.0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING – AG: Peck 14-46; Amanto 8-46; Davis 6-22; Kim 1-12; Parola 1-11; Moran 1-4; D’Aquanno 2-0; Radecki 4-(-8). H: Rymiszewski12-145, 2 TD; Bady 7-51, TD; C. Mitten 4-36; Matonti 4-15; Girafalco 1-9; Green 2-6, TD; Lind 1-0; Dinacci 2-(-3).
PASSING – AG: Peck 7-18, 62, TD, INT. H: Bady 5-7, 147, 2 TD, INT.
RECEIVING – AG: Braxton 3-48, TD; Davis 2-2; Amanto 1-10; D’Aquanno 1-2. H: Rymiszewski 2-107, 2 TD; P. Mitten 2-27; Girafalco 1-13.
SACKS – AG: Lytle (2). H: Kane, Medykiewicz, Delaney.
INTERCEPTIONS – AG: Davis. H: Rymiszewski.

Red Raiders dismantle West

Photo by Nate Heckenberger/ Coatesville's Daquan Worley carries during Friday's win over Downingtown West.


DOWNINGTOWN -- At this point, teams around District 1 might stop checking the playoff standings to see who they’re playing in exchange for making sure they’re not playing Coatesville.
Teams that commit 17 penalties for 144 yards and turn the ball over twice in a game don’t typically come out the victor. Coatesville is not your typical team right now. Not only did they overcome all those handicaps, but the Red Raiders dropped 52 points and 563 yards on host Downingtown West.
Emmett Hunt threw for a career-high 317 yards and four touchdowns -- and his first career interception -- and Daquan Worley ran for 203 yards and a pair of scores as the Red Raiders sprinted closer to their third straight playoff appearance with a 52-20 win over the Whippets.
“We’re not adding new things each week on offense,” Coatesville coach Matt Ortega said. “Maybe a few things here or there, but mostly we’re just running our offense. Part of having a good offense is getting better fundamentally every week. We’ve been doing that and it’s been working.”
Coatesville moves to 7-2 overall and 4-1 in the Ches-Mont National, and if you got to Kottmeyer Stadium late you probably missed the start of the fireworks. On the second play from scrimmage, Hunt threw a swing pass to Dre Boggs, who blasted past the defense for a 72-yard score.
Chris Jones set the Red Raiders up with good field position their next possession with a 56-yard punt return to the West 38. On the sixth play, Worley dashed 11 yards for a TD.
As much as the offense wows the crowd, Coatesville has one of the area’s most reliable kickers in Jon Bollenbach, special teams that made plays Friday night and a starting defense that’s allowed five TDs in the past 20 quarters.
“Our defense played very, very well,” Ortega said. “(West) had one good drive and then had a short field in the second quarter. Our special teams are getting better every week, and that was the first time we lined up to punt in four weeks. I’m happy with all three phases.”
Those aforementioned penalties definitely hurt Coatesville’s cause at times. On its third drive of the game a Worley touchdown run was called back due to holding. After a delay of game made it first-and-35 from the West 38, Kyle Goodrich picked off Hunt at the goal line. It was Hunt’s first interception in 134 career attempts.
“I knew it was gonna happen sometime,” said Hunt, who now has 1,961 yards and 28 TDs this season. “Everyone kept talking about it and the papers kept writing about it, so I knew it was gonna happen. I just had to bounce back and coach said it showed my competitive side.”
The Whippets (3-2, 6-3) took advantage, surging the ball towards midfield before Tino Bunhu broke free on a trap for a 52-yard run to paydirt. Bunhu had 132 yards and all three TDs.
The Red Raiders wasted no time with a counter. After three straight run plays, Hunt fired a pass downfield, but the ball batted backwards, right into the hands of Boggs who outran the defense for a 61-yard score. But Boggs was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on his way into the end zone, so the ball was brought back to the West 28.
Three plays later Boggs took a sweep 15 yards to erase his mistake and put the Red Raiders up 14.
On Coatesville’s next possession Hunt was tackled while trying to punt, and Bunhu scored minutes later.
“On our end, we find ourselves down 14-0 in a heartbeat, similarly to last week (against Downingtown East),” Milano said. “We scramble back to 21-14 and it looks like we’re battling.”
A snap that hit a running back in motion on West’s next series led to a 31-yard TD pass from Hunt to Jones, which followed another Boggs’ score that was called back due to a flag.
West was unable to run enough clock on its next possession, as Hunt connected with Boggs on a 44-yard pass to the Whippets’ four. A facemask penalty tacked on two yards, but also allowed the Red Raiders one final play as the half can’t end on a defensive penalty. Hunt capitalized, hitting Vinnie Williams to make it 38-14.
“(West) was very aggressive, and we started running some play action when they moved their linebackers up,” Hunt said. “We hit some stuff and turned it up. And when we turn it up I don’t think anyone can stick with us.”
The Whippets sure couldn’t, as Worley wore down them down and scored his second in the third. Jones also added another TD -- his area-high 14th this season.
“Obviously they’re very talented and well-coached,” Milano said. “They have a great mix of size and speed. With Worley, we didn’t know what kind of back he was because they haven’t run the ball much, but we couldn’t tackle him.”
Worley bested his previous career-high of 103 yards on Oct. 12. Boggs, meanwhile, has touched the ball 48 times offensively for 886 yards, averaging 18.5 yards a pop.
The Red Raiders host Avon Grove (1-4, 1-8) and have a good shot at a home playoff game the following week with a win. West has to beat Shanahan on the road next Saturday and hope it gets enough power points to slide in at the bottom of the playoff field.

Coatesville 52, Downingtown West 20
Coatesville    21    17    7    7    -     52
Downingtown West      7    7    0    6    -     20
First Quarter
CV- Boggs 72 pass from Hunt (Bollenbach kick)
CV- Worley 11 run (Bollenbach kick)
DTW- Bunhu 52 run (Caruso kick)
CV- Boggs 15 run (Bollenbach kick)
DTW- Bunhu 9 run (Caruso kick)
CV- Bollenbach 20 field goal
CV- Jones 31 pass from Hunt (Bollenbach kick)
CV- Williams 2 pass from Hunt (Bollenbach kick)
CV-Worley 4 run (Bollenbach kick)
CV- Jones 13 pass from Hunt (Bollenbach kick)
DTW- Bunhu 6 run (Caruso kick)
    CV     DTW
First downs     14    13
Rushes-Yards     246    207
Passing yards     317    83
Total yards    563    290
Passing        16-21-1    10-13-0
Punts-Average    0-0    6-34
Fumbles-Lost    2-2    2-1
Penalties-Yards    17-144    7-62
Rushing: CV- Worley 18-203, 2 TDs; Boggs 3-38, TD; Clark 5-11; Baynard 1-5; Flamer 2-2; Hunt 4-(-13). DTW- Bunhu 13-132, 3 TDs; Meleski 10-43; Sauder 2-16; Pagel 6-12; Tinson 2-5; Fiore 1-1; team 1-0; Egan 2-(-1); McNulty 1-(-1).
Passing: CV- Hunt 16-21-317, 4 TDs, INT. DTW- Pagel 7-10-44; Harlow 3-3-39.
Receiving: CV- Jones 7-115, 2 TDs; Boggs 4-168, TD; Williams 3-19, TD; Worley 1-11; Stocker 1-4. DTW- Varano 3-18; Meleski 3-16; Fiore 2-37; Bunhu 1-10; Boyer 1-2.
SACKS: CV- Boykin, Leslie, Levan. DTW: Nanni, Perelli.
INTERCEPTIONS: CV- none. DTW- Goodrich.

Friars fall in first home night game


MALVERN -- Coming into Friday night’s Inter-Academic League clash between Episcopal Academy and host Malvern Prep in the first night game ever at Pellegrini Athletic Complex, the Episcopal defense allowed just 14 points all season.
The Churchmen brought their tremendous defense again, and, by the way, tossed in a superlative performance from senior quarterback and University of Pennsylvania recruit Adam Strouss, who threw two touchdown passes and threw for 251 yards. Malvern was snowed under by the two-pronged attack and Episcopal Academy got a leg up in the Inter-Ac race with a convincing 26-7 triumph.
“We have been waiting for this game all year,” Stouss said. “We knew that Malvern is always at the top of the league and we put a lot of hard work and film study into this game. And it being their first home night game we figured they scheduled us because they thought it would be an easy win.
“We sort of meesed up that plan and we were tired about hearing about us not playing top teams like they do. We feel we are one of the best teams in the area and we played good football tonight.”
The Churchmen (3-0 Inter-Ac, 8-0 overall) took the opening kickoff and marched down the field behind the strong arm of Strouss and the golden hands of Ian Strain, who caught nine balls for 157 yards. They drove 60 yards in eight plays with Strouss going the final five on the ground for a 7-0 lead.
But Malvern (2-1, 5-3) matched the Churchmen on their first possession and scored on a fourth-and-goal when quarterback Bill Ford went in from a yard out to knot the score at 7-7. From there, it was all Episcopal Academy for the last three-and-a-half periods.
The Churchmen defense sacked Ford six times and held Malvern to 101 yards on the ground and 97 through the air. The Episcopal defense was led by Evan Butts, who had two sacks and a fired up bunch up front as they would not let the Friars mount a serious scoring threat after the first drive.
Joe Carlini had a big night catching six balls for 60 yards, but the Friars could never string a series of successful plays together against a defense that had five shutouts on the season coming into the game.
“They took it to us,” Malvern head coach Kevin Pellegrini said. “They got up by two touchdowns in the first half and a lot of that was because we could not get pressure on Strouss. Our defense played better in the second half but offensively we just could not sustain a drive.”
Episcopal was up 14-7 after a 33-yard strike from Strouss to Strain down the left side as the Churchemn QB threaded the needle for the score.
Malvern appeared to have life on the next posession as they drove past midfield on a Connor Bohs run up the middle. But at the end of the play Bohs was stripped by Teddy Ibarguen and the Churchemn recovered the fumble at their own 27-yard line.
The play ignited another Episcopal march as Strouss ran 10 yards and knocked over Malvern defender Eric Purnell during the 20-yard jaunt. Two plays later Strouss hit Troy Gayhardt with a perfect 36-yard TD pass for a 20-6 halftime lead.
Episcopal’s defense really clamped down in the second half, sacking Ford five times and controlling the line of scrimmage. The last score of the game came early in the fourth when Strain went around the right side from the four and Malvern was a game back of the Churchemn and Haverford School in the league race.
“This was a total team effort against a very good Malvern team,” Episcopal Academy head coach Todd Fairlie said. “Adam had a good game and our defense played well.”

Episcopal Academy 26, Malvern Prep 7
Episcopal Academy  7 13 0 6 - 26
Malvern Prep       7 0 0 0 - 7
E-Strouss 5 run (Hager kick)
M-Ford 1 run (Dollfus kick)
E-Strain 33 pass from Strouss (Hager kick)
E-Gayhardt 36 pass from Strouss (kick failed)
E-Strain 4 run (pass failed)
Team Totals
 EA     MP
First downs           18            13
Yards rushing         130          101
Yards passing        252            97
Total yards            382         198
Passing               14-28-0    10-18-1
Fumbles-lost          0-0          2-1
Punts-avg             2-33.5      5-31.0
Penalties-yds          2-17       6-28
Individual Statistics
Rushing: EA: Strouss 20-85, TD; Fellazini 11-36; Smith 3-5; Strain 3-4, TD. MP: Gallen 8-59; Bohs 7-45; Purnell 6-9; Ford 10 (-26), TD.
Passing: EA: Strouss 13-24-0 251 yards, 2TD; Whayland 1-4-0 1 yards. MP: Ford: 10-18-1 97 yards.
Receiving: EA: Strain 9-157, TD; Gayhardt 1-36, TD; Hager 3-47; Perretti 1-12. MP: Carlini 6-60; Ammermann 1-16; Gallen 1-22; Bohs 1 (-9).
Sacks: EA: Butts 2, Mclauhglin, McAvoy, Addona, Ibarguen. MP: None.
Interceptions: EA: Strain. MP: None.

Follow Peter DiGiovannia at

Indians clinch share of division title

Photo by Bill Rudick/ Unionville's Brad Pechin hits the hole during Friday's win over Octorara.


EAST MARLBOROUGH — It’s been four years since Unionville was atop the Ches-Mont American Division. After Friday night, the Indians are one win from the mountaintop. 
With a 55-30 win over visiting Octorara, the Indians control their destiny in the division, and can win it outright with a win over rival Kennett Next week.
“Now we just have to beat Kennett next week,” said Unionville running back Brad Pechin, “because we don’t want to share.”
Unionville caught the first big break of the game within seconds of the start of the contest. Octorara fumbled the opening kickoff, and Unionville recovered at the Braves’ 8-yard line. Two plays later, quarterback Tom Pancoast ran it in from eight yards out.
But Octorara answered right back, as it would for much of the first half. On its first possession the Braves marched 65 yards on 14 plays, capped by a 36-yard dash to the endzone on a fourth-and-one play by Cory Cooper.
Cooper was one of two Braves to top the 100-yard plateau for Octorara. Alex Gooden led all rushers on the night with 176 yards on 20 carries, while Coooper added 129 yards and scoring runs of 34 and 43 yards to help keep the Braves in the thick of things for most of the first half. Add a 31-yard field goal by Nate Byerly, and the Braves were within four points at 21-17 deep into the second period.
But then Unionville’s defense came up with a big stop, and the offense began to open things up. Just before the end of the half, Alex Pechin connected with Tim Christopher, with Christopher making a diving catch in the corner of the end zone for a 28-yard touchdown and a 34-17 halftime lead.
“We actually had a pretty strong first half, too,” said Unionville coach Pat Clark. “We put up 34 points in two periods. Plus defensively, we held them to a field goal on one drive, and came up with a cuple stops at the end of the half. I think we made good adjustments starting at the end of the second period.”
Two third-period touchdowns, one an 8-yard run from Pancoast, the other a 34-yard jaunt for Prechin, and the Indians had put together four unanswered scores to blow the game open.
Pechin led the way for the Unionville rushing attack, rolling up 165 yards on 13 carries. Pancoast chipped in with 79 yards on the ground, and scored four of the Unionville touchdowns.
“All those yards were the line, not me,” said Prechin. “Ryan Ford, Andrew Jones, Luke Metexas, David Brooks, Paul Steffi, Lenny Johnson and John McLaughlin were incredible up front. The holes they were opening up were just huge. It let me just get into a rhythm, see the hole and hit it.”
Now the only thing standing between the Indians and sole possession of its first title in four years is its neighborhood rival, Kennett.
“Kennett has a nice program, and coach Scott Green is a class act,” said Clark. “I hope they go 9-1 every year, as long as that loss is in the last game of the year against us.”

Unionville 55, Octorara 30
Octorara     14 3 0 13 -- 30
Unionville     14 20 14 7 -- 55
Un--Pancoast 5 run (Daly kick)
Oc--Coeper 36 run (Byerly kick)
Un--Pancoast 51 run (Daly kick)
Oc--DeJesse 1 run  (Byerely kick)
Un-Pancoast 14 run  (Daly kick)
OC--Byerly 31 field goal
Un--B. Pechin 8 run (Daly kick)
UN--Christopher 28 pass from A. Pechin (Daly kick)
Un-Pancoast 8 run (Daly kick)
Un B Pechin 34 run (Daly kick)
Oc--Norris 13 run (kick failed)
Un-Stradling 1 run (A. Pechin kick)
Oc--Cooper 43 run (Byerly kick)
Team Totals
    OC     UN
First downs     17    9
Yards rushing     351    299
Yards passing     59    98
Total yards    410    397
Passing     4-11-0    4-5-0
Fumbles-Lost     3-1    0-0
Penalties    5-55    5-60
Punts-Avg.     0-0    0-0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - Octorara: Gooden 20-176; Cooper 14-129, 2 TDs; Norris 7-30, TD; DeJesse 5-10, TD; Hill 1-6, Unionville: B. Pechin 13-165, 2 TDs; Pancoast 6-79, 4 TDs; DiBaggio 3-39; Stradling 3-11, TD; A. Pechin 1-56.
PASSING - Octorara: Gooden 4-11-0, 59 yards. Unionville: A. Pechin 3-4-0, 87 yards, TD; Pancoast 1-1-0, 11 yards.
RECEIVING - Octorara: Butler 2-24; DiNorscia 1-22; Thomas 1-12. Unionville: Nash 2-59; Christopher 1-28; Rosenberg 1-11.
SACKS - None.

Pioneers come up just short at Haverford


HAVERFORD — By the time Eddie Durkin had stalked off the field and toward his sideline, the fluid had stopped dripping from his facemask. He took a few pats on the helmet, grabbed a water bottle and sat on the bench with a towel wrapped around his arms and face.
Durkin, Haverford’s quarterback, only moments earlier had completed an eight-point swing that led to the Fords’ 34-28 dismissal of Conestoga and locked up Haverford’s first playoff berth since 2007. But it wasn’t without a little pain.
Their senior signal-caller, Durkin hit Ricky Dempsey for a 63-yard touchdown reception on the final play of the third quarter. Then Durkin — before tucking for a 2-point conversion — lost his lunch.
Durkin didn’t want to call a timeout, even though his team had three of them.
“No need to,” Durkin said. “Just all that running, I guess.”
“He’s a tough quarterback,” Dempsey added. “Tough.”
The second of Durkin’s three touchdowns, and the subsequent 2-point conversion, gave Haverford (8-1, 6-1) a lead it wouldn’t relinquish. And after the Fords’ defense did its thing by holding Conestoga (5-4, 4-4) on a 3-and-out, Durkin’s 39-yard scamper on a third-and-11 led to his 1-yard lunge later in the series.
It gave the Fords their first District One Class AAAA playoff berth in five seasons and, a few minutes later, set off a huge, midfield party at A.G. Cornog Field.
Haverford coach Joe Gallagher, drenched in the contents of a water cooler, had nothing but praise for Durkin. He had all of his timeouts remaining on that 2-point conversion attempt, but never considered using one to spell Durkin.
“You let him throw up and score. That’s part of football. I have no problem with that,” Gallagher said. “I told him, ‘Good job,’ after he did that. If you’re throwing up during a 2-point play, it happens. That’s football. But Eddie’s tough.”
Durkin helped the Fords overcome two deficits in the first half, with Marcus Burton’s 1-yard lunge and the first of Andrew DeStefano’s three scoring receptions from quarterback Joe Viviano giving Conestoga a 14-7 lead midway through the second quarter.
But Haverford got to Viviano prior to the half. Matt Skurka sacked Viviano and forced a fumble that Shawn Luterman recovered in the end zone to even the score at 14-14 at intermission.
“Huge play,” Gallagher said.
Then the second half belonged to Durkin and the Fords. Jai Thornton capped a six-play drive, buoyed by a 60-yard connection between Durkin and Dempsey, with a 1-yard dive. And after the Pioneers took the lead on yet another touchdown from DeStefano (nine catches, 175 yards, three touchdowns), Durkin connected with Dempsey for the touchdown that got even the quarterback a little queasy.
Gallagher said Durkin (175 yards passing, 97 yards rushing) probably felt the need to do a little more after senior running back Kevin Leyden left the game in the first quarter. Leyden, the Fords’ leading rusher, sustained a banged-up right shoulder and didn’t return.
“With Kevin out, it kind of fell on (Durkin) a little bit,” Gallagher said. “They’re not good players. They’re great players. So Eddie, internally, was saying to himself, ‘This is on me.’ And he responded.”
To the point of nausea, no less.
“Our kids played until the very end, but this was just Haverford, Joe Gallagher, Eddie Durkin and those kids having their night,” Conestoga coach John Vogan said. “We did all we could do to try to win, but this was their night and they should enjoy that.”

Haverford 34, Conestoga 28
Conestoga    7     7     7     7     —     28
Haverford    0    14     14     6     —    34
C: Burton 1 run (Toroni kick)
H: Durkin 5 run (Russell kick)
C: DeStefano 34 pass from Viviano (Toroni kick)
H: Luterman fumble recovery in end zone (Russell kick)
H: Thornton 1 run (kick failed)
C: DeStefano 65 pass from Viviano (Toroni kick)
H: Dempsey 63 pass from Durkin (Durkin run)
H: Durkin 1 run (kick failed)
C: DeStefano 5 pass from Viviano (Toroni kick)
    CON     HAV
First downs     17    16
Rushing yards     118    178
Passing yards     199    175
Total yards    317    353
Passing     13-21-0    7-12-1
Punts-Average     2-27.5    3-27.6
Fumbles-Lost    2-2    2-0
Penalties-Yards     2-10    6-50
Rushing: Conestoga — Burton 22-68, TD; Viviano 13-40; DeStefano 1-10. Haverford — Durkin 13-97, TD; Drum 11-57; Thornton 7-20, TD; Leyden 3-6; Team 2-(-2).
Passing: Conestoga — Viviano 13-21-0, 199 yards, 3 TDs. Haverford — Durkin 7-12-1, 175 yards.
Receiving: Conestoga — DeStefano 9-175, 3 TDs; Loevy 1-14; Dorsey 1-10; Pritchett 1-10; Prestipino 1-8. Haverford — Dempsey 2-123, TD; Hepp 2-24; Sydnor 1-20; Drum 1-7; Thornton 1-1.

Cougars rout Vikings to clinch division crown


WEST CHESTER – Coming into Friday’s game against West Chester East as a huge favorite, Downingtown East had plenty of reasons to look past the Vikings.
The undefeated Cougars could have been looking back to last week’s emotional victory over archrival Downingtown West. They could have been looking ahead to next week’s showdown with defending National Division champion West Chester Henderson.
Until, of course, the undefeated Cougars looked to the current district standings, atop which they sat when they took the field at Harold I. Zimmerman Stadium. With a top district seed, home field advantage throughout the playoffs and, by the way, a National Division championship at their fingertips, the Cougars weren’t about to let it slip away.
Ryley Angeline rushed for 138 yards and three touchdowns in the first half and the suffocating Downingtown East defense turned in a dominant performance against the overmatched Vikings as the Cougars (5-0, 9-0) clinched the National Division crown for the fourth time in five years with a 48-7 victory. Downingtown East didn’t allow a first down to a West Chester East offense without starting quarterback JonJon Roberts until three minutes remained in the first half. When the dust settled, the Cougars held the Vikings (0-6, 1-8) to 113 yards of offense, sacked replacement Pat Downey seven times, forced three turnovers and ran back a fumble for a touchdown in one of their most complete performances of the season.
“I thought they played very well,” Downingtown East head coach Mike Matta said. “I was a little worried because we played in front of a huge crowd at the Downingtown East-West game. It was so emotional, and you always worry about the let-down, and you sandwich it in between the game with Henderson, who beat us the last two years. I think our kids played to their level, which is always what you want to see. We did a lot of good things.”
Cougars quarterback Kyle Lauletta threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Eddie Kozlowski on the game’s first drive, and star wideout Jay Harris managed just 10 total yards, but Downingtown’s dynamic duo was hardly needed on this night, the pair taking a seat midway through the second quarter in a game that got out of hand shortly after it began. Lauletta completed six of eight passes for 62 yards, cracking the 2,000-yard mark in the process.
Angeline carried 15 times in the first half, scoring on runs of 12, five, and 36 yards. He would have had a fourth touchdown if not for a fumble at the goal line, but even that proved fruitful for the Cougars, as offensive lineman Dan Tilghman pounced on it in the end zone to make it 21-0.
Three plays later, senior linebacker Pete Carpenter scooped up Downey’s fumble and returned it 20 yards to the house to put the Cougars up by 28 still in the opening period. Downingtown East was forced into its only punt of the game on its next possession, but Angeline polished off the next two with touchdowns, capping the first-half scoring with a 36-yard burst up the middle that made it 41-0 with four minutes left in the half.
“Our line was making some big holes,” said Angeline. “They were doing all the work.”
“It’s funny that Ryley is our third or fourth option,” Matta said of his top back. He’s really good.”
Downey had his hands full in his first career start, forced to take over for Roberts, who sat with a high ankle sprain. Downey was running for his life from the get-go, absorbing six sacks and countless big hits in a first half he’d probably like to forget. Elijah Griffin and Josh Ganzelli each brought Downey to the turf twice as the Cougars surrendered a measly 13 yards of offense in the first two quarters.
“Downingtown East,” said Vikings coach Dan Ellis, “is a really good football team.”
Downey finally picked up the Vikings’ initial first down on a meandering scramble late in the first half, but otherwise had few highlights against the district’s top team. He finished 4-for-10 for 26 yards and was picked off by Andrew Scavicchio in the Vikings’ first trip into Cougars territory. Doubling as the punter, he also saw a snap sail over his head late in the first half, setting up Downingtown East on the Vikings’ 29-yard line. Five plays later, Angeline’s second score had put the Cougars up 35-0.
One of the biggest beneficiaries of the lopsided score, sophomore back Keith Connor carried eight times for 61 yards and touchdown for Downingtown East. West Chester East quarterback Andrew Murphy also took advantage of a rare chance at extended playing time, getting the Vikings on the board with a five-yard touchdown scamper with just under nine minutes to play. Murphy looked good in the pocket and out of it, completing two long passes to Nick Corialos and carrying three times for 23 yards on a long scoring drive.
“We got a lot of kids in today,” Angeline said. “We found out a couple kids can play.”
Even with the division crown in hand, the Cougars will have no shortage of motivation for next Friday’s clash with the Warriors, who won the National a year ago and have had East’s number of late. With revenge - and the top district seed- in their sights, Matta expects the Cougars to be firing on all cylinders.
“I think we have a different group this year,” he said. “We have some very good leaders emerging and a lot of things to play for. They’ve worked really hard to get where they’re at.”

Downingtown East 48, West Chester East 7
Downingtown East     28 13 7 0 -- 48
W.C. East     0 0 0 7 -- 7
DE-Kozlowski 17 pass from Lauletta (White kick)
DE-Angeline 12 run (White kick)
DE-Tilghman recovered fumble in end zone (White kick)
DE-Carpenter 20 fumble return (White kick)
DE-Angeline 5 run (White kick)
DE-Angeline 36 run (kick failed)
DE-Connor 1 run (White kick)
WCE-Murphy 5 run (Lavoie kick)
Team Totals
    DE     WCE
First downs     21    8
Yards rushing     292    48
Yards passing     62    65
Total yards    354    113
Passing     6-8-0    6-13-1
Fumbles-Lost     1-0    2-1
Penalties    3-45    2-18
Punts-Avg.     1-39.0    4-27.0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - DE: Angeline 15-138, 3 TDs; Connor 8-61, TD; Lauletta 2-26; Lucas-Murphy 6-19; Kozlowski 1-18; Althouse 2-11; Ambrogi 4-7; Harris 1-5; Beals 1-4; Bovard 1-3. WCE: Murphy 5-26, TD; Manes 8-16; Costa 4-11; Downey 12-0; Jackson 1-(-5).
PASSING - DE: Lauletta 6-8-0, 62 yards, TD. WCE: Downey 4-10-1, 26 yards; Murphy 2-3-0, 39 yards.
RECEIVING - DE: Beals 2-30; Kozlowski 1-17, TD; Angeline 1-5; Foley 1-5; Harris 1-5. WCE: Ritrovato 3-19; Corialos 2-39; Costa 1-7.
SACKS - DE: Ganzelli 2, Griffin 2, Hearns, Smith. WCE: O’Connor, Logan .5, Peterson .5.

Kennett holds off Oxford, sets up showdown with rival Unionville


OXFORD - It was by no means a work of art, but the Kennett High School football team knows that all that matters is it was a victory they had to have that now sets the state for their biggest game since the re-birth of their program.
On Friday night, Kennett kept its division title and district playoff hopes alive as they went on the road and posted a 28-20 Ches-Mont League American Division victory over Oxford.
Senior running Jordan Lardani rushed for a game-high 102 yards and two touchdowns, and senior receiver Maalik Rochester caught a key 33-yard touchdown pass with 5:03 to go give the Blue Demons a 28-12 lead before they were eventually able to hold on down the stretch.
Kennett (4-1 American, 7-2 overall) now gears up to host archrival Unionville next Saturday at 2 p.m. in the regular season finale for both teams that has a ton at stake. Kennett will be seeking its first-ever victory over the Indians, and if they get it they will guarantee themselves of at least a share of the American Division title. Coming into Friday night’s game, Kennett also stood at No. 18 in the District 1 Class AAAA playoff point standings. The top-16 qualify, and a victory over Unionville next week would probably be enough to get the Blue Demons’ into districts for the first time.
“It’s the biggest game of my life next Saturday,” said Lardani. “No doubt about it. Everything is on the line for us -- our entire season hangs on this one game.
“We knew this was a must-win for us against Oxford to make the stakes very high for the Unionville game. We were well aware of the fact that we have to win out to have any shot at either the division title or a playoff berth.”
Lardani spearheaded a Kennett rushing attack that grounded up 295 yards against Oxford (1-5, 4-5). C.J. Lowe added 86 yards and touchdown, and quarterback Jordan Jones rushed for 74 yards as well.
Kennett led 15-0 at halftime, thanks to some key stops by its defense. Oxford twice had the ball inside the Kennett 20-yard line in final five minutes of the half, but on both occasions came away empty handed as Kennett’s defense stopped them on downs.
Oxford found some momentum, though, on the opening kickoff of the second half as Colton Turns busted one 82 yards for a touchdown to cut the deficit to 15-6.
“We felt fortunate to be up 15-0 at halftime,” said Kennett coach Scott Green. “We were able to get some big stops, but then they came right out to start the third quarter with that big kickoff return.
“We were able to answer the bell and go right back down the field with a big drive. That showed some resiliency and the character of our team really shined in that situation.”
Kennett answered Turns’ kickoff return with a 75-yard touchdown drive. Lardani capped it with his second touchdown of the night, a 2-yard run, to give the Blue Demons a 21-6 lead with 7:27 to go in the third period.
Oxford, who has now lost five of its last six games after a 3-0 start, fought hard all night long. Turns, who had a big game with a team-high 84 yards rushing, got the Hornets right back into the game with a 5-yard touchdown run to make it 21-12 after a second costly missed extra point.
Midway through the fourth quarter, Oxford had the ball at the Kennett 28-yard line but was stopped on downs when Ethan Herb’s pass fell incomplete.
Kennett appeared to put the game away right after that when Rochester hauled in the 33-yard touchdown catch from Jones. That score with 5:03 to play gave the Blue Demons a 28-12 lead.
Oxford clawed back again, as they cut the deficit to 28-20 with 1:39 to go following a 20-yard touchdown reception by Ryan Hubley. Turns added a two-point conversion run.
Oxford’s ensuing onside kick, however, only didn’t come close to traveling the 10 yards needed and died on the grass allowing Kennett to take over and run out the clock from there.
“We were on their side of the field a lot, and we left a lot of points out there,” said Oxford coach Mike Pietlock. “That’s been the story of our season. We couldn’t get points in those situations, and I put that on myself as the coach.”
Kennett has now won four straight games. By doing so, they put themselves in position to play a big game this coming weekend against Unionville.
“We knew this was a win that we needed tonight against Oxford,” said Green. “It wasn’t pretty but we’ll certainly take it. Now we have an opportunity next week against Unionville, and all we could ask for was an opportunity.
“I know the kids are going to be excited for this one all week, and they are really looking forward to the challenge.”

Kennett 28, Oxford 20
Kennett     8 7 6 7 -- 28
Oxford     0 0 12 8 -- 20
K-Lowe 13 run (McQuiston run)
K-Lardani 34 run (Rose kick)
OX-Turns 82 kickoff return (Kick failed)
K-Lardani 2 run (Kick failed)
OX-Turns 5 run (Kick failed)
K-Rochester 33 pass from Jones (Rose kick)
OX-Hubley 20 pass from Herb (Turns run)
Team Totals
    K     OX
First downs     11    10
Yards rushing     295    129
Yards passing     51    105
Total yards    346    234
Passing     4-7-0    6-19-1
Fumbles-Lost     1-0    1-1
Penalties    12-80    1-5
Punts-Avg.     6-25.0    2-30.5
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - Kennett: Lardani 18-102, 2TDs; Lowe 12-86, TD; Jones 10-74; McQuiston 4-33. Oxford: Turns 22-84, TD; Way 5-22; Rosa 2-12; Lopez 2-6; Herb 9-5.
PASSING - Kennett: Jones 4-7, 51 yds, TD. Oxford: Herb 6-19, 105 yds, TD, INT.
RECEIVING - Kennett: Rochester 3-41, TD; Clarke 1-10. Oxford: Hubley 2-51, TD; Dawkins 2-39, Sumner 2-15.
SACKS - Kennett: Niewinski, Masha. Oxford: Wolfe.
INTERCEPTIONS - Kennett: Turner. Oxford: none.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Downingtown West tops Kennett, rolls into district quarterfinals


DOWNINGTOWN - For more than 45 minutes of their District 1 Class AAA playoff game, the Downingtown West High School boys soccer team got everything it could handle from a pesky Kennett squad who had already pulled off one upset in the tournament.
Then in the blink of an eye it seemed, what had been a tight scoreless battle between Ches-Mont League foes took a big turn.
Brett Coper scored two goals in the span of just over a minute early in the second half to give his squad all the momentum and help propel No. 5 seeded Downingtown West to an impressive 3-0 second-round victory over No. 25 Kennett under the lights at DiSerafino Stadium.
The Ches-Mont League National Division champion Whippets (14-2-3 overall) now advance to the district quarterfinals on Saturday, where they’ll host No. 13 Souderton. Souderton stunned fourth-seeded Conestoga, the defending district and state champions, 4-3 on penalty kicks in the second round.
Kennett (12-7-1), who had upset No. 12 Boyertown in the opening round, saw its season come to a close.
Coper gave Downingtown West a crucial 1-0 advantage with 33:34 remaining in what had been a defensive struggle up to that point. That goal really deflated Kennett’s balloon.
The next one was simply the back breaker. Just 1:14 later, Coper again found the back of the net to give the Whippets a commanding 2-0 cushion.
On both goals, the visiting Blue Demons had trouble clearing the ball out of harm amid scrum’s inside the penalty box.
“The first one just bounced into the box and somebody headed it on, and I was in the right place and was able to punch it in. The second goal they had trouble getting the ball out and I was able to knock it in,” said Coper, who now has four goals in the Whippets’ two playoff wins. “On both goals we didn’t give up on the play, we stayed with it and got rewarded.
“The first half was really tough. They came out really hard and gave us a fight. This was as pretty big win for us. We’ve had some real battles against Kennett, and it was nice to beat them by a little wider margin. Now we’re looking forward to Saturday.”
Kennett, who came into the match banged up and shorthanded after losing three starters to injury in their win over Boyertown, lost yet another starter, Griffin Dight, to injury early in the contest. Despite that adversity the Blue Demons played a very strategic game in the opening half and found themselves right in the thick of things.
Not long after halftime, however, it all fell apart.
“You’ve gotta play all 80 minutes,” said Kennett coach Dean Temple. “We broke down a little in the box on their first two goals and were unable to clear the ball. When you get so many people in the box that happens.
“We knew it was going to be a tough nut for us today. We gave everything we had in that first round upset. I’m proud of the kids, we had a good season. Hats off to Downingtown, they lost a lot of players to the academy before the season started and here they are having a heck of a year.”
Downingtown West’s Justin Obendorfer tacked on another goal for good measure to make it 3-0 when he scored on a nice header with 20:48 to play.
Whippets senior goalie Zach Steffen made six saves in posting his second straight shutout to start the post-season. He had a couple of key stops just moments into the second half when the match was still scoreless.
“We weren’t sharp in the first half,” said Downingtown West coach John Hatt. “Kennett was playing for a close game, that’s what they like to do and they do it well. So once we scored that first goal they had to come out a little bit and that kind of changed their mentality.”
All and all, Downingtown West has looked awfully sharp so far in its first two district games. They know they’ll have to keep that level of intensity up on Saturday against Souderton.
“We’re excited,” said Hatt. “We are playing well at the right time of the year. The way we are playing we think we have a chance against anybody.”

Downingtown West 3 Kennett 0
Kennett     0 0 -- 0
Downingtown West     0 3 -- 3
Downingtown West goals: Coper 2, Obendorfer.
Goalie saves: Giarrocco (K) 11; Steffen (DW) 7.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Predicted Class AAAA playoff seedings

After going through the final 2 weeks, here's what I came up in terms of trying to predict the District 1 4A playoff field. Chances are it won't end up exactly like this, but there could be some intriguing local matchups (and potential 2nd round rematches??)

1. Downingtown East v. 16 Downingtown West
2. Ridley v. 15 Abington
3. Pennridge v. 14 Neshaminy
4. Plymouth Whitemarsh v. 13 Spring-Ford
5. CB South v. 12 Haverford
6. Pennsbury v. 11 Perk Valley
7. Unionville v. 10 Garnet Valley
8. Coatesville v. 9 Rustin

Nate Heckenberger

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Lardani, Demons run past Octorara


ATGLEN — Lightning strikes pushed the Octorara-Kennett football game scheduled for Friday night to Saturday night.
But after a 24 hour delay, there was no shortage of electricity on the field when the county’s two top rushers, Kennett’s Jordan Lardani and Octorara’s Alex Gooden, squared off.
By halftime, Lardani had found the end zone three times to lead a first-half Kennett surge that put the Demons up 36-0 at the break, putting the running clock under the mercy rule in effect for the entire second half.
“We were relying on our seniors to not let the long delay be a distraction,” said Kennett coach Scott Green. “They really show their maturity and character week in and week out, and came though for us and played lights out in the first half.”
The Demons wasted little time in establishing the tone of the game. They were going to run the football, and run it well.  On its first possession, Kennett rushed for first downs on its first three plays from scrimmage, and ran just seven plays before Lardani scampered in from 28 yards out.
By the break, Lardani had rushed for 96 yards on 10 carries.
“He breaks tackles, and throws blocks for his teammates,” said Green. “It feels like I say the same things about Jordan every week, but he’s
just a pleasure to have on the team.”
The Demons also got a solid first half from Kevin McQuiston, who seemed to break big plays every time he touched the ball.  McQuiston
had touchdown runs of 23 and 25 yards.
“The holes were just huge,”  said McQuiston. “Liam Clark was making blocks on the outside that were just leaving massive holes to shoot through.  It was hard not to get big yards thanks to the guys leading us.”
The second of McQuiston’s two touchdowns was set up by another big play, this time a 23-yard pass from Jordan Jones that put the Demons in the red zone.
“That’s a play we practice all the time,” said McQuiston. “Jordan just laid it in my hands perfectly.”
McQuiston finished the evening with 57 yards and a pair of touchdowns on just three carries, plus the long reception.
“It was nice to see Kevin have the kind of night he had,” said Green. “He’s a hard worker and a senior leader.  I’m really proud of him.”
Gooden sparked the Braves offensive effort, leading all rushers with 143 yards on 12 carries. He ran for two of the Braves three second-half scores, and connected with Anthony DiNorscia on an 84-yard pass play for the third score.
The rushing yards lifted Gooden above the 1000-yard plateau, making him the first player at Octorara to reach that milestone.
“Without my offensive linemen and my teammates making the blocks for me, I would never have gotten to that mark,” said Gooden. “It’s really less of a personal achievement than it was a total team effort.  I just wish it would have brought more wins with it.”
At 6-2, the Blue Demons are knocking on the door of the district playoffs. But you won’t hear anyone in Kennett blue talking about it.
“We’re not talking playoffs,” said Green. “We have a tough game with Oxford next week, and then we finish with Unionville.  We can only take things one week at a time, and only worry about the next game. Good teams can only worry about the next win.”
But that doesn’t mean the Demons are oblivious to the high-water mark the program is on the brink of reaching.
“If we win out, we can win a Ches-Mont division championship,” said Lardani.  “We just have to take care of business week to week, and maybe we can do something never heard of at our school.”

Kennett 36, Octorara 20
Kennett             16  20  0  0  --36
Octorara           0  0  13  7  --20
K-- Lardani 28 run (Rose kick)
K-- Lardani 40 run (Rose kick)
K-- Safety
K-- McQuiston 23 run (Rose kick)
K-- Lardani 6 run (kick failed)
O-- Gooden 3 run (kick failed)
O-- Gooden 37 run (kick failed)
O-- DiNorscia 84 pass from Gooden (Byerly kick)
Team Totals
    K     O
First downs     8    6
Yards rushing     230    227
Yards passing     38    103
Total yards    268    330
Passing     3-4-0    4-6-0
Fumbles-Lost     1-1    2-1
Penalties    6-40    2-25
Punts-Avg.     0-0    1-21.0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - Kennett: Lardani 10-96 3TDs; McQuiston 3-57 2TDs; Leubbe 10-37; Lowe 2-26; Jones 4-14. Octorara: Gooden 12-143 2TDs; Cooper 5-46; DeJesse 3-20; Norris 3-13; Devlin 5-5.
PASSING - Kennett: Jones 3-4-0 38 yards. Octorara: Gooden 4-6-0 103 yard 1TD.
RECEIVING - Kennett: Clarke 2-15; McQuiston 1-23. Octorara: Thompson 3-19; DiNorscia 1-84 1TD.
SACKS - Kennett: None. Octorara: DiNorscia, Stiles.
INTERCEPTIONS - Kennett: None. Octorara: None.

Shanahan blanks Vikings


DOWNINGTOWN -- With both teams needing a Ches-Mont League National Division football win badly, West Chester East miscues turned into Bishop Shanahan points and 27-0 victory in front of a happy homecoming crowd Saturday at Jack Mancini Field.
Coming into Saturday’s matchup, the two teams were a combined 1-7 in the league, but the Eagles (2-3, 3-4) scored twice in the first period to cruise to victory and keep the Vikings winless in the National (0-5, 1-7).
After a 24-yard kickooff return by Nick Manes, who had 100 yards returning on the day in what was East’s only area of positivity, the Vikings were forced to punt.  The Eagles had a quick four-and-out series followed by four downs and another punt by the Vikings until some offense would finally get started.
The Eagles drove 61 yards to the shadow of the East goal.  On first-and-goal, the ball was handed off to Braden Harper who made it to about the 2-yard line before fumbling the ball into the end zone and panicking the home side.  Luck was on Shanahan’s side because lineman Jon Weyand pounced on the ball for the score and a 7-0 lead. They never looked back from there.
East, which was without starting freshman quarterback Jon Jon Roberts, relied on backup Pat Downey.  His pitch to Jason Costa was fumbled and recovered by Shanahan’s Kris Otto on the 13-yard line.  The Eagles wasted no time cashing in on the turnover. Vince Angeleini rumbled 13 yards into the end zone and a quick 14-0 advantage.
The Vikings started to get untracked in the second quarter. Manes returned a kick 42 yards to the East 48. They drove to the Shanahan three, but Costa fumbled again and Matt Evans recovered for Shanahan on its three.
Justin Cook was sacked by the Vikings’ Scott Malik back to the Shanahan one. After avoiding a safety, Cook connected with Jeff Zebrowski for 34 of his 120 yards receiving.
“Every game is a big game but today was definitely the best game of year,” said Zebrowski who also added a touchdown.  “It wasn’t just me out there though, our defense came up big today.”
Zebrowski was definitely right.
After Cody Smith caught a 19-yard TD pass from Cook, the rest was left up to the Shanahan defense, who pitched a shutout the rest of the way.
“You know I was proud of our guys today and they seemed to be playing with a lot of emotion due to the homecoming festivities,” said head coach Paul Meyers.

Bishop Shanahan 27, WC East 0
W.C. East    0 0 0 0 -- 0
Bishop Shanahan     14 6 0 7 -- 27
BS -- Weyand fumble recovery in end zone (Johnson kick)
BS -- Angelini 13 run (Johnson kick)
BS -- Smith 19 pass from Cook (kick failed)
BS -- Zebrowski 18 pass from Cook (Johnson kick)
Team Totals
                    WCE         BS
First downs         22    23
Yards rushing         67    105
Yards passing         90    177
Total yards        157    282
Passing         8-21-2    13-19-0
Fumbles-Lost         2-2    2-0
Punts-Avg.         2-38    3-39
Individual Statistics
RUSHING – West Chester East: Manes 8-42; Costa 4-22; Genthert 6-11; Ritrovado 1-2; Hower 3-0; Downey 7-(-10). Bishop Shanahan: Angelini 5-28 1TD; Harper 9-47; Cook 6-24; Ruggieri 3-6; Johns 3-0.
Passing: West Chester East Downey 7-20-2 67 yards; Murphy 1-1-0 23 yards. Bishop Shanhan: Cook 13-19-0 177 yards 2TDs.
RECEIVINIG: West Chester East: Ritrovado 4-65; McKenna 4-25. Bishop Shanahan: Zebrkoski 6-120 1TD; Smith 1-19 1TD; Oakes 5-37; Harper 1-1.
SACKS: West Chester East: Harsh, Malik, Frye; Bishop Shanahan: Judd 2, Terra.
INTERCEPTIONS: West Chester East: None. Bishop Shanahan: Terra, Oakes.

Knights win rout over Hornets


WEST GOSHEN-- As the season winds down, one though occupies the West Chester Rustin football team -- winning out and getting to the playoffs.  The Golden Knights took one step in the right direction Saturday afternoon, showing the up-and-coming Oxford program that it still had some ground to cover to reach the upper levels of the Ches-Mont League American Division.
The Golden Knights (3-1, 6-2) jumped out to big first-half lead and coasted to a 48-0 pasting of the Hornets (1-4, 4-4).
“Oxford has some good athletes on that team, and they have been making plays all year,” said Rustin coach Mike St. Clair.  “Fortunately, we made some plays and got the early momentum. (Oxford coach) Mike Pietlock has them playing hard, and they can’t be taken lightly.”
After holding the Hornets to a three-and-out on the first possession of the game, Rustin took over at the Oxford 35. Six plays later, they were in the end zone as quarterback Dave Fithian sneaking in from the one.
The first big break in the game came with Rustin up 14-0. With Oxford punting from its own end zone, Rustin blocked the kick, and Jordan Miller covered the loose ball just in front of the end line for the score.
From there, Rustin went to the ground attack behind sophomore Terry Loper, who led all rushers with 154 yards on the afternoon, including a 55-yard burst for a touchdown late in the third to make the score 42-0.
“The O-line always does an excellent job,” said Loper.  “You ask them to step up and make a hole for you, and they step up and make that hole. You learn to just be able to hit them.”
The young back is learning on the go, and maturing quickly, according to St. Clair.
“He’s a young kid, just a sophomore,” said St. Clair.  “But he is just getting better and better each week and each game. If he continues to mature at this pace, the sky’s the limit.”
Up 28-0 at the break, Rustin had a chance to start the running clock on its first play from scrimmage.  Fithian dropped back to pass, and the line gave him eternity to scan his receivers. He found Adam Burke with a cushion between himself and the defender, and dropped a pass on his fingertips. Burke
pulled it in, and covered all the remaining green on a 68-yard touchdown.
“The line was making great blocks and gave Fithian all the time in the world,” said Burke.  “That pass was right on the money.  I’m just glad I could finish it in the end zone and allowed us to start the second half out with a big play.”
Burke also added 57 yards rushing on seven carries, and scored three times.
“These kids come out hard and ready to play every week,” said St. Clair.  “They work hard in practice and try to keep getting better.  We just want to win out, make the playoffs, and hope Kennett can upset Unionville, so we can at least get a piece of the Ches-Mont title.”
Rustin remains a game behind Unionville in the American race. The Golden Knights will visit Sun Valley next week.
Meanwhile, Oxford hosts Kennett next week, still with dreams of recording its frist winning season since 1996.
“We definitely laid an egg here today,” said Pietlock. “But that’s the thing with coaching kids. They will probably be over it by the time we get to Oxford.  It’s the coaches that will stew over it for days.  But this is a good group of kids. I think these seniors really want to go out as winners, and they will come out after it the next two weeks.”

West Chester Rustin 48, Oxford 0
Oxford 0 0 0 0--0
W.C. Rustin 7 21 13 7--48
WCR-- Fithian 1 run (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Burke 1 run (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Miller fumble recovery in end zone (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Burke 46 run  (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Burke 68 pass from Fithian (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Loper 55 run (Jenkins kick)
WCR-- Kirk 22 run (Jenkins kick)
Team Totals
    O     WCR
First downs     9    12
Yards rushing     78    299
Yards passing     86    82
Total yards    164    381
Passing     8-16-2    3-5-1
Fumbles-Lost     0-0    1-0
Penalties    3-25    2-15
Punts-Avg.     4-26.5    0-0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - Oxford: Turns 11-45; J. Lopez 4-17; Herb 1-16; Way 1-2; Rosa 1-2; Harris 1-2; Deasey 1-1. W.C. Rustin: Loper 14-154 1TD; Burke 7-57 2TD; Kirk 5-36 1TD; McKnight 1-17; Lamberjack 5-16; Pemsley 2-6; Peterson 2-6; Muscarella 1-7.
PASSING - Oxford: Herb 8-14-2 86 yards; Rosa 0-1-0; Green 0-1-0. W.C. Rustin: Fithian 3-5-1 82 yards, 1TD.
RECEIVING - Oxford: Sumner 2-33; X. Lopez 2-17; Turns 1-15; Davis 1-8; Clark 1-4. W.C. Rustin: Lamberjack 2-14; Burke 1-68 1TD.
SACKS - Oxford: None. W.C. Rustin: None.
INTERCEPTIONS - Oxford: Rosa. W.C. Rustin: Love; Stewart.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Lauletta, Harris lead D-East past archrivals

Photo by Nate Heckenberger/ Downingtown East's Jay Harris high-steps into the end zone on a 17-yard touchdown run in the first quarter of Friday's 35-21 victory over Downingtown West.


DOWNINGTOWN -- If there’s football left to play, count on Downingtown to get every last second out of it.
After an almost 40-minute delay, Downingtown East and Downingtown West didn’t let a few strikes of lightning or some steady rain ruin their fun, as the final quarter was played in a rather barren Kottmeyer Stadium.
It was quite the contrast to how the game started, with an estimated 7,000 fans in attendance, adding an electricity of its own in the air. In the end, East’s Jay Harris and Kyle Lauletta were too much for the second straight year, and the Cougars topped their crosstown rivals, 35-21, as the away team in the Ches-Mont National Division contest. It was East’s third straight win in the series.
Harris caught seven passes for 117 yards and both of Lauletta’s touchdown passes, while both tacked on a running score.
“It was a live crowd and the stands were packed and we were anxious to get out there and put points on the board,” Harris said. “We got our goal.”
The Cougars (4-0 division, 8-0 overall) got started quickly, hurting West (3-1, 6-2) on a pair of early mistakes. On its first drive, East drove the ball into West territory, but needed a facemask penalty on fourth-and-seven to continue it. Two plays later Harris took a handoff and darted 17 yards up the middle for the initial score.
On the second play of the Whippets’ first drive, quarterback Nick Pagel tried to connect on a big play via the flea-flicker, but East was not tricked and Eddie Kozlowski intercepted the pass. The next play Lauletta was able to avoid pressure and lofted a pass to a streaking Harris, who outran everybody for a 66-yard TD.
“We stopped them early and then we had that facemask penalty and we had the kick sacked, but (Lauletta) is good,” Milano said. “They’re so good, you can’t make mistakes. You gotta make plays. We had five or six procedure calls, and that just gets us behind schedule.
“Defensively (East) stretches you and they spread you out. Lauletta can run and that Harris kid is special.”
After helping to dig themselves in an early hole, the Whippets climbed back out, methodically moving the ball down the field, going 70 yards on 10 plays, finally scoring on an 11-yard run by Pagel.
A fumbled handoff on the next East series gave West the ball 18 yards away from the end zone, and five plays later a 4-yard TD scamper by Mitchell Meleski tied the game at 14. But the Whippets fumbled away their next possession and penalties hampered their next two as East gained momentum from there.
“(West) came out and ran more option than we anticipated, and they work hard over there and are well-coached,” East coach Mike Matta said. “We picked things up and made some adjustments,  but you have to give them credit.”
East’s final two drives showed the separation between the two schools. Lauletta scored on a quarterback sneak with 1:49 left in the half, and after Brandon Feamster had a pick six called back to the East 35, Lauletta showed his brilliance.
With 39 seconds remaining, Lauletta hit Harris for 11, then Chris Beals for 19. After an incompletion, he hit Harris for another five and Beals for another 26. And with nine ticks remaining Lauletta connected with Harris on a back-shoulder pass to put East up 28-14 at half.
“We never gave up,” Harris said. “We knew it would be a fight and that we’d have to face adversity. It’s the East-West game, so we faced some adversity and I think we do that well.”
The third quarter was a stalemate, as both teams moved the ball on the ground but could not finish. Angeline marched the Cougars down to the West six when the delay came, but 40 minutes later he finished what he started, plowing in for his fifth TD of the season.
The junior finished with 143 yards rushing. Harris carried the ball four times for 16 yards, lining up in the power-I a few times in a new wrinkle for the Michigan State recruit.
“That’s (offensive coordinator Tom) Wolfe in the laboratory,” Matta said. “We made it a point to get Jay Harris x amount of touches a game, and that is definitely something we were trying to do.”
Tino Bunhu led the Whippets with 126 rushing yards, while Pagel added 76 and two scores on the ground.
“Our quarterback played great,” Milano said. “This was his best game. He managed the option game and threw the ball well.”
East will play West Chester East Friday and then West Chester Henderson for the finale. The Cougars have never gone 10-0, and as Matta explained, have gone into the playoffs the last couple years not playing their best. A win against the Vikings clinches the National crown.
“The Ches-Mont championship is not even on our radar yet,” Matta said. “We’ve kind of stumbled down the stretch the last couple years, and we’d rather be going ahead full throttle.”

Downingtown East 35, Downingtown West 21
Downingtown East    14 14 0 7 - 35
Downingtown West    14 0 0 7 - 21
DTE- Harris 17 run (White kick)
DTE- Harris 66 pass from Lauletta (White kick)
DTW- Pagel 11 run (Caruso kick)
DTW- Meleski 4 run (Caruso kick)
DTE- Lauletta 1 run (White kick)
DTE- Harris 4 pass from Lauletta (White kick)
DTE- Angeline 6 run (White kick)
DTW- Pagel 32 run (Caruso kick)
Team Statistics
    DTE    DTW
First downs     15    11
Rushes-Yards     172    245
Passing yards     247    67
Total yards    419    312
Passing     11-16-0    6-16-2
Punts-Average     2-30.5    4-41.5
Fumbles-Lost    2-2    4-2
Penalties-Yards     6-43    10-57
Individual Statistics
Rushing: DTE- Angeline 29-145, TD; Harris 4-16, TD; Lauletta 11-11, TD. DTW- Bunhu 17-126; Pagel 10-79, 2 TDs; Meleski 11-43, TD; Sauder 1-1; team 1-(-4).
Passing: DTE- Lauletta 11-16-0, 247 yards, 2 TDs. DTW- Pagel 6-15-2, 67 yards; Schmitt 0-1-0.
Receiving: DTE- Harris 7-117, 2 TDs; Beals 4-66; Kozlowski 1-56; Foley 1-19. DTW- Varano 3-35; Schmitt 3-32.
SACKS- DTE- none. DTW- Speca; Nanni .5; Perelli .5.
INTERCEPTIONS- DTE- Kozlowski; Feamster. DTW- none.

Coatesville rolls past Henderson

Staff photo by Tom Kelly IV/ Coatesville quarterback Emmett Hunt unloads during Friday's win over West Chester Henderson.


WEST CHESTER -- The Coatesville High School football team dominated the first half of a key Ches-Mont League National Division game with West Chester Henderson on Friday night. The Red Raiders scored 28 points, got a huge goalline stand from their defense and saw quarterback Emmett Hunt throw his 24th touchdown pass of the season against no interceptions.
Coatesville rang up 266 yards of total offense against the best statistical defense in the county in just the first half. Turns out that was all the Red Raiders needed as the contest was called with 11:34 to play in the third period due to lightning strikes.
Henderson head coach Steve Mitten decided it was better to stop play instead of coming back Saturday, so Coatesville won the shortened contest, 28-6.
“We thought it was better to stop because we saw on radar that more storms were coming and we would not have gotten the game in tonight,” Mitten said. “And we did not want to come back Saturday. Coatesville is just a great team on both sides of the ball and they are going to be quite a handful for anybody in the Class AAAA playoffs.”
The Red Raiders (3-0 Ches-Mont National, 6-2 overall) took the opening kickoff and marched to the Henderson nine-yard line before Daquan Worley was stopped on fourth down turning the ball over to Henderson. Three plays later, Derek Matonti fumbled the ball back to Coatesville at the Warriors’ (2-2, 6-2) 23.
Three plays later, Worley busted through a giant hole for an eight-yard score and a 7-0 lead. The Red Raiders, three minutes later after a Henderson three-and out, showed how explosive they are. Dre Boggs ripped off an 80-yard touchdown run, crisscrossing the field for an early 14-0 advantage.
Henderson caught a break on the nest Coatesville drive when Hunt threw a bubble screen to Worley that ended up on the carpet and was ruled a lateral. Spencer Rymiszewski recoverd the ball at the Coatesville five, giving the Warriors some life.
On the next play, Rymiszewski busted down to the one and it appeared the miscue would result in a Henderson score. Coatesville hung tough and stuffed the Warriors on three straight tries at the line and turned the ball back over.
Coatesville’s defense limited the Warriors to 41 yards rushing in the first half.
“Our offense has been getting a lot of talk, and rightly so, but our defense has been playing very well and is playing with as much confidence as our offense,” Coatesville head coach Matt Ortega said. “They are getting after people and that goalline stand was huge for us.”
Coatesville got big defensive games from Mike Boykin, Tyler Burke, Dylan Morgan and Isiah Flamer, who scored the team’s fourth touchdown when he picked off a Rymizewksi halfback pass and rumbled 28 yards for a score.
“That goalline stand was the result of poor play calling and poor exectuion,” Mitten said. “But take nothing away from Coatesville. They are something else.”
Early in the second, Coatesville drove 97 yards on nine plays which was topped off by Hunt, throwing a 20-yard dart to Chris Jones in the end zone. Hunt had so much zip on the ball, it seemd to be in Jones’ hands in a blink of an eye.
“My offensive line gave me a lot of time and Chris ran a great route,” Hunt said. “I just put it to him. We are playing with a lot of confidence on both sides of the ball and I am getting the chance to call some plays at the line. And our defense was great tonight. I think they are the best defense in the state the way they have been playing.”
Henderson avoided the shutout when they scored with 12 seconds to play on a 10-yard pass from James Bady to Phil Mitten.
The Warriors host Avon Grove next week, while the Red Raiders go to Kottmeyer Stadium to take on Downingtown West.

Coatesville 28, W.C. Henderson 6
Coatesville               14 14 0-28
W.C. Henderson       0   6  0-6
C-Worley 8 run (Bollenbach kick)
C-Boggs 80 run (Bollenbach kick)
C-Jones 20 pass from Hunt (Bollenbach kick)
C-Flamer 28 interception return (Bollenbach kick)
H-P. Mitten 10 pass from Bady (kick failed)
 Team Totals
C     H
First downs             10           6
Yards rushing          183          41
Yards passing           83          69
Total yards              266       110
Passing                  5-7-0    5-8-1
Fumbles-lost           3-1         2-1
Punts-avg               0-0       2-44.0
Penalties-yds          6-66        4-20
Individual Statistics
Rushing: Coat: Boggs 2-86, TD; Worley 11-52, TD; Hunt 4-33; Flamer 1-12. Hen: Rymiszewski 11-17; Girafalco 3-9; Matonti 5-4; Green 2-7; Bady 4 (-11); C.Mitten 2-3.
Passing: Coat: Hunt 5-7-83, TD. Hend: Bady 5-6-69, TD. Rymiszewski 0-2-0.
Receiving: Coat: Jones 3-29, TD; Williams 2-54. Hend: Rymiszewski 3-44; P. Mitten 2-24, TD.
Sacks: Coat: Boykin. Hend: None.
Interceptions: Coat: Flamer. Hend: None.

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Pioneers roll past Harriton


TREDYFFRIN – Coming off a back-breaking defeat at the hands of Strath Haven the previous week, Conestoga had two objectives on a clear Friday night at Teamer Field.
One was to get a win at all costs to keep its fading district playoff hopes alive. The second was to win big, and rid itself of the bitter taste of squandering a two-score lead the last time it took the field.
Thanks to Joe Viviano and company, the Pioneers were able to accomplish both.
Conestoga’s Harvard-bound quarterback threw for 171 yards and a touchdown and ran for two more scores, including an electrifying 55-yard sprint just before the end of the first quarter as Conestoga (4-3, 5-3) cruised to a 51-21 victory over Harriton (2-5, 3-5) on Homecoming. Nick Prestipino scored on an 18-yard run and a tip-toeing, sideline-hugging 62-yard screen pass to cap an impressive stretch in which the Pioneers found the end zone on their first four possessions to put the game out of reach before halftime.
“Everybody was really disappointed about last week,” Viviano said. “We didn’t play our best game. We came out strong. We really emphasized getting up on them early and just keep driving it in.”
Conestoga’s balanced offense was working to perfection from the opening kickoff. The Pioneers finished with 485 yards on the night, spread nicely between their equally potent ground and aerial attacks. Conestoga racked up 304 yards in the first half – 154 rushing, 150 passing- as Prestipino sandwiched a pair of touchdowns around Viviano’s two rushing scores to send the Pioneers into halftime with a 30-7 lead, quickly putting the sting of the previous week behind them.
“We were not pleased with the way we played, and we were not pleased with our turnout for that game,” Conestoga head coach John Vogan said. “We tell the kids that there’s nothing we can do about last week; just worry about tonight. Harriton was a great test because their offense is so good. I’m just proud of the way our kids played.”
Rams quarterback Pat Moriarty finished threw for 158 yards and two touchdowns, and Juwan Valentine caught five balls for 96 yards and a score, but Harriton managed only 11 first downs and hardly moved the ball between its three scoring drives.
“This is a very good football team, a very frightening team,” Vogan said. “Their skill players are probably the best I’ve seen in a long time...I’m just proud of the way our defense played. Our defense made plays, and we pressed them.”
Prestipino finished a 12-play, 63-yard opening drive with an 18-yard touchdown burst. The bruising tailback carried seven times for 36 yards on the possession as Vogan began the game looking to establish the run.
Viviano did his part, engineering touchdowns with his legs on the next two drives. The 6-4, 220-pound signal-caller plowed in from a yard out to put the Pioneers up 14-0 with three minutes left in the opening quarter. Conestoga’s 5-2 defense forced a punt on Harriton’s next possession, and Viviano made it 21-0 three plays later with the highlight of the night.
Facing third-and-nine from his own 45, Viviano was flushed out of the pocket by a pair of hard-charging Rams, rolling to the right and turning back up field to sprint past the first-down marker. Then it was a foot race, and Viviano won. Showcasing surprising speed, he turned on the jets and gained the second level, outrunning the Rams’ secondary and into the end zone.
Not to be outdone, Prestipino turned in his own breathtaking play moments later, turning a short gain on a check-down from Viviano into a 62-yard scamper down the sideline. Prestipino looked to be stacked up near the end line, but managed to slither through a group of would-be tacklers and sprinted down the sideline for a remarkable touchdown that put the Pioneers ahead 27-7 early in the second quarter.
“I don’t really know,” Prestipino said when asked how he managed to break free. “I was playing fullback and I came out into the flat for a slide pass. I sort of side-stepped, threw a little stiff-arm down, and I wasn’t as close to the sideline as they thought. I was able to side-step and I was just out from there.”
Blaise Toroni added a 24-yard field goal at the end of the first half for Conestoga, which managed to get whatever it wanted despite a near no-show from star receiver Andrew DeStefano. The area’s leader in catches with 52 entering Friday, DeStefano had once reception for nine yards and couldn’t come up with a pair of passes in the end zone. It hardly mattered. He did his damage on the ground, sprinting around the edge and scoring from 22 yards out on an end-around early in the fourth quarter.
“It’s tough for him, because he’s obviously one of our most dangerous weapons,” Viviano said. “But they double-teamed him all the time, and a lot of other guys stepped up.”
Viviano consistently looked for- and found- his secondary options, hitting Dillon Quinn (four catches, 56 yards) and Martin Dorsey (three catches, 40 yards) on underneath routes to keep the chains moving. Aidan Gallagher added a 16-yard touchdown run late in the game to cap the Pioneers’ scoring.
Now the Pioneers steel for an all-important showdown at Haverford High (7-1) next Friday. Conestoga came into the game in 25th place in the district standings, the top 16 of which qualify for the playoffs. To be one of them, the Pioneers know it’s win or go home.   
Conestoga 51, Harriton 21
Harriton     0 7 7 7 -- 21
Conestoga     21 9 7 14 -- 51
C-Prestipino 18 run (Toroni kick)
C-Viviano 1 run (Toroni kick)
C-Viviano 55 run (Toroni kick)
C-Prestipino 62 pass from Viviano (kick failed)
H-Brown 24 pass from Moriarty (Lawson kick)
C-Toroni 24 field goal
C-Burton 10 run (Toroni kick)
H-Valentine 29 pass from Moriarty (Lawson kick)
C-DeStefano 22 run (Toroni kick)
C-Gallagher 16 run (Toroni kick)
Team Totals
    H     C
First downs     11    28
Yards rushing     83    314
Yards passing     158    171
Total yards    241    485
Passing     11-23-0    10-22-0
Fumbles-Lost     1-1    0-0
Penalties    7-47    7-45
Punts-Avg.     7-32.7    1-34.0
Individual Statistics
RUSHING - Harriton: Jackson 4-32; Valentine 1-22; Pendleton 5-18; Byrd 3-18, TD; Korn 4-7; Davis 1-3; Moriarty 3-(-17). Conestoga: Burton 22-140, TD; Viviano 7-61, TD; Prestipino 7-36, TD; Gallagher 3-27, TD; DeStefano 2-26, TD; Cook 3-11.
PASSING - Harriton: Moriarty 11-23-0, 158 yards, 2 TDs; Rosen 0-1-0. Conestoga: Viviano 10-22-0, 171 yards, TD.
RECEIVING - Harriton: Valentine 5-96, TD; Brown 2-33, TD; Davis 2-26; Morris 1-3; Pendleton 1-0. Conestoga: Quinn 4-56; Dorsey 3-40; Prestipino 1-62, TD; DeStefano 1-9.
SACKS - Harriton: Brown. Conestoga: Cox, Moses.