Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FOOTBALL FRIDAY -

QB Bryce Lauletta. It was run back 56 yards by Bren­dan Dear­ing to the Cougars’ 3-yard line. Joe Gueriera ran it from two-yards out for the Shana­han touch­down.

Dan Li­au­datis tied the game on a two-yard plunge. Li­au­datis car­ried the ball 31 times for 107 yards, also run­ning out of the Wild­cat of­ten. The Cougars ended up with 291 yards on the night.

“It is some­thing we have toyed with, but tonight, we used it a lot,” Down­ing­town East head coach Mike Matta said of the for­ma­tion. “We have to get the ball into Jeremy’s hands as much as pos­si­ble, and tonight, we did that.”

Bothe teams had chances to break the dead­lock. Shana­han missed a 21-yard field goal at­tempt, while the Cougars ran a fake field goal try that was stuffed at the end of the first half.

Shana­han (2-2, 6-2) had a 14-7 lead af­ter three as Ea­gles quar­ter­back Nick Skul­ski hit Dear­ing on a 38 yard slant pass for the score.

But, right there, the Cougars de­cided to make a state­ment that they were not the team that lost to Coatesville.

Down­ing­town East scored three touch­downs in five min­utes to take a 28-14 lead with just over seven min­utes to play in the fourth. East used its big of­fen­sive line to wear down the Ea­gles’ front wall. Li­au­datis scored un­touched on a 12-yard run, then Jen­nings took over the game, scor­ing on runs of 30 and 75 yards for a 28-14 ad­van­tage.

“They started to wear us out up front,” Bishop Shana­han head coach Paul Mey­ers said. “They are so big up front, and our de­fense was on the field a long time tonight.”

Down 14 points, Shana­han did not roll over. They went on a nine­play drive be­hind the pass­ing of Skul­ski, who hit Gueriera with a 14-yard pass for a first down deep in Cougars ter­ri­tory. Three plays later, Skul­ski hooked up with John Kozin­ski in the cor­ner of the end zone for a two-yard touch­down toss to close the gap to 28-21 with 3:58 to play. Dear­ing, who had a big catch on the drive, led the Ea­gles with five re­cep­tions for 103 yards.

The Ea­gles forced a Down­ing­town East punt to get the ball back with just three min­utes re­main­ing.

This time, the Cougars stiff­ened, forc­ing four straight in­com­ple­tions to get to make the short drive back to East with the vic­tory.

“It was tough tonight, but I was glad to see some kids that did not have good first halfs to turn things around late in the game.” Matta said. The kids could have quit if they had any doubt, but they didn’t. This was a char­ac­ter win for our club. Shana­han was tough. Num­ber 1 (Skul­ski) is a real ball player. And they played tough de­fense. Paul al­ways does a good job with his kids.”

Note: Jack Whalen led Shana­han with nine tack­les.

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