TWO-WAY GEM

Hub­ley shines as Pa­tri­ots thwart Sun Val­ley

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Matthew DeGe­orge mde­ge­orge@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @sports­doc­tormd on Twit­ter

AS­TON >> In a mat­ter of sec­onds, Ryan Hub­ley’s night went from im­pres­sive to out­stand­ing Fri­day.

The Great Val­ley se­nior had just out­mus­cled Sun Val­ley’s Ishy Ah­mad on a cor­ner fade for an in­ter­cep­tion in the end zone. On the Pa­tri­ots’ next of­fen­sive snap, he lined up in the slot with a line­backer cov­er­ing him and a sin­gle high safety inch­ing to­ward the line.

One look in the back­field at quar­ter­back Robert Geiss, and Hub­ley was off to the gamechang­ing races.

His 80-yard touch­down, com­ple­ment­ing a 76-yard hookup in the first half, for­mally salted away a 45-21 win for the Pa­tri­ots in a bat­tle for Ches-Mont Amer­i­can Di­vi­sion supremacy.

Hub­ley’s catch-and-run, a sec­ond time he beat the de­fense on a deep slant and juked the only mem­ber of the sec­ondary ca­pa­ble of pre­vent­ing his march to pay­dirt, trig­gered the run­ning clock, build­ing the lead to 45-7 five min­utes into the sec­ond half. And while Sun Val­ley (4-1, 1-1) tacked on two con­so­la­tion touch­downs in the fourth, the rout was well and truly sealed.

“I think it’s just Coach (Dan) El­lis’ game plan,” Hub­ley said. “He’s see­ing the safety drop down and

there’s a line­backer on me, and I just have to beat the line­backer. Robert’s see­ing the same thing as me, and I’m beat­ing the line­backer and Robert hits me right down on the seam.”

While the fi­nal score may not have dic­tated so, the lit­tle things helped Great Val­ley (4-1, 2-0) score the game’s first 35 points, and Hub­ley was of­ten the provider.

The Pa­tri­ots scored on all six first-half pos­ses­sions. The first three were set up by Hub­ley punt re­turns of 19, 15 and 18 yards, trim­ming an al­ready short field fur­nished by a stingy de­fense.

“When­ever you get the ball on the 40-yard line, it’s eas­ier,” Hub­ley said. “You’re putting your­self in a good po­si­tion to score ev­ery time. We were get­ting some good stops in their 20s and 30s, then they’d have to punt and we’d be re­turn­ing it from the 50.”

Those stops weren’t triv­ial ei­ther. Through five pos­ses­sions, the Van­guards had a grand to­tal of 29 yards (nine on a

promis­ing run by Quentin West that re­sulted in a fum­ble forced by Mark DeRober­tis and re­cov­ered by Mark Neri). By the time Sun Val­ley had earned its ini­tial first down early, it had spot­ted the Pa­tri­ots 28 points.

“They’re a very phys­i­cal team, and we had the men­tal­ity that we were go­ing to beat them off the line,” said de­fen­sive end Jack McDaid, who sacked Sun Val­ley quar­ter­back Gabe Boc­cella twice. “If we win the line, we’re go­ing to win the game. We had more phys­i­cal prac­tices than usual and we worked our tails off. They’re 4-0 and we needed to beat them.”

“They’re a pretty good foot­ball team, so I’m re­ally happy with the way we came in,” El­lis said. “It’s not hard to get up for Sun Val­ley when they’re 4-0. They’re 4-0 for a rea­son.”

Once it had the ball, Great Val­ley was near flaw­less in its ex­e­cu­tion. Geiss found Dy­lan Tashjian for 30 yards on fourth-and-18 on the open­ing se­ries for a score. Geiss scam­pered 10 yards for a score, fol­lowed by touch­down runs of 2 and

15 yards for DeRober­tis.

Hub­ley’s 76-yard streak down the side­line with 5:45 left ush­ered in the blowout.

“It’s just great when it’s work­ing,” Hub­ley said of his con­nec­tion to Geiss, who went 15-for20 to seven re­ceivers for 272 yards. “It’s like noth­ing else. We’re just on the same page and we make stuff hap­pen.”

Sun Val­ley, though, didn’t quit. It ap­peared to make progress when Mike Wind­sor ripped off a 47-yard kick re­turn to fi­nally break the shack­les of poor field po­si­tion wrought by Pat Sauer’s pin­point pop-up kicks (another of those lit­tle de­tails). But that drive stalled on downs at the 24 af­ter an in­ten­tional ground­ing in­frac­tion, but it pro­vided some hope.

“If we score then, make it 28-7, maybe we’re able to go on from there,” Sun Val­ley coach Ray Gionta said. “We didn’t get in, and that was a neg­a­tive, and they came back down and scored again. It was a snow­ball ef­fect.”

Char­lie Wendling scored be­fore half­time on a 10-yard run, though the 1:52 Sun Val­ley left on the clock was enough for Geiss to run the twominute drill and po­si­tion Sauer for a 32-yard field goal at the gun.

A hob­bling Ah­mad hauled in a 37-yard touch­down from Boc­cella in the fourth, and West, who car­ried 10 times for 112 yards, capped his day with a 39yard scor­ing trot.

But there was no chance of Great Val­ley slip­ping up af­ter the break and let­ting Sun Val­ley threaten for win No. 5.

“Our ob­jec­tive is al­ways to score as much as we can,” Hub­ley said. “Com­ing out of half, we were treat­ing it like it’s a 0-0 game. We didn’t want any up­sets or any­thing.”

PETE BANNAN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Great Val­l­ley quar­ter­back Rob Geiss con­nects with Ryan Hub­ley for a touch­down in the third quar­ter at Sun Val­ley on Fri­day.

PETE BANNAN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Sun Val­ley tight end Char­lie Wendling tum­bles into the end zone to score in the third quar­ter.

PETE BANNAN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Great Val­l­ley run­ning back Alex Crouse is tack­led by Sun Val­ley’s Quentin West in the sec­ond quar­ter Fri­day.

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