Out-gunned:

PV’s Sturm breaks Devlin’s record in win

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Sam Ste­wart sstew­art@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Sa­muel_Ste­wart7 on Twit­ter

GRATERFORD >> Get out the pens, Penn­syl­va­nia state record keep­ers: there’s a new record holder.

Perkiomen Val­ley se­nior quar­ter­back Stephen Sturm con­tin­ued his tor­rid stretch in the district play­offs, throw­ing for 331 yards and four touch­downs to eclipse the record for most ca­reer pass­ing yards by a Class 4A-6A player in Fri­day night’s 44-21 vic­tory over vis­it­ing Downingtown East in the District 1 Class 6A quar­ter­fi­nals Fri­day night.

Sturm’s 8,261 ca­reer yards moves him ahead of Downingtown East’s Pat Devlin, who had a sen­sa­tional ca­reer from 2002-2005, throw­ing for 8,162

yards. Sturm, who has thrown for 3,174 yards and 40 touch­downs his se­nior sea­son, also broke his own PAC record for most sin­gle-sea­son pass­ing yards, bet­ter­ing his own mark of 3,087 set last sea­son.

When learn­ing of his records, Sturm de­flected the ac­co­lades right back to his team­mates.

“I have to give credit to every­one around me,” Sturm said. “We have so much chem­istry, we’ve been do­ing this for three years, it’s just sec­ond na­ture to us. I know where they’ll be and they know where I’m go­ing to put it. Right now, we’re just hav­ing fun. I couldn’t do it with­out them,” Perkiomen Val­ley (5-0 PAC, 12-0 over­all) ad­vances to the district semi­fi­nals for the sec­ond time in four sea­sons. The Vik­ings will host No. 10 Gar­net Val­ley, which ousted un­de­feated Ne­shaminy 42-14, Fri­day night at 7 p.m.

“It’s amaz­ing to get into the district semi­fi­nals and be able to play in front of our home fans,” Sturm said. “It’s go­ing to be an­other great game. Gar­net Val­ley is a hell of a team that did a num­ber on Ne­shaminy. I ex­pect a great game.”

“Get­ting to the semi­fi­nals is nice, but our goal isn’t com­pleted yet,” added se­nior wide re­ceiver Justin Ja­worski. “We want to win the cham­pi­onship.”

That goal is be­com­ing more and more of a re­al­ity the way the Vik­ings have been play­ing the past two weeks.

Ja­worski and Sean Owens took ad­van­tage of a pass-heavy Vik­ings’ at­tack as they both com­piled 100-plus yard games. Ja­worski fin­ished with 11 re­cep­tions for 146 yards and a score while Sean Owens added 137 yards on six re­cep­tions that in­cluded a sen­sa­tional catch where the se­nior hauled in a pass from Sturm on a slant pat­tern with his fin­ger­tips before jet­ting to the end zone for a 32-yard score to make it 30-14 right af­ter

the half. Owens fin­ished with two touch­downs.

“We saw it on film that they liked to blitz so many peo­ple,” Ja­worski said. “We got straight man cov­er­age. All week we knew that we had to win our one-on-one bat­tles. If we didn’t win those, we’d prob­a­bly lose. We did what he had to do to­day and made sure we got sep­a­ra­tion.”

Dan Li­au­daitis fin­ished with 150 yards rush­ing on 31 car­ries for a Downingtown East (5-1, 9-3) squad that has fallen in the district quar­ter­fi­nals in the past two sea­sons. He, along with Jeremy Jen­nings (12 car­ries for 64 yards and a score) proved to be a night­mare for the Vik­ings’ de­fense in the sec­ond quar­ter as Jen­nings capped off a 11play, 80-yard drive with a 6-yard run up the gut to tie the game at 14 mid­way through. That was as close as the Cougars got.

Gar­rett Patla swung mo­men­tum right back in the Vik­ings’ fa­vor as he booted a ca­reer-best, 49yard field goal to make it

17-14 before the of­fense came back on its next drive, Ja­worski’s 31-yard haul on a post pat­tern giv­ing the team a 24-14 lead one minute before the break.

Owens’ afore­men­tioned touch­down ex­tended the lead to 30-14 before he added his sec­ond score, gain­ing a step on an East de­fen­sive back as he hauled in a per­fectly placed pass by Sturm near the cor­ner of the end zone to make it 37-14.

Li­au­daitis brought East back into the game mid­way through the fourth with a 19-yard gash up the mid­dle and an in­ter­cep­tion af­ter a failed on­side kick had given the Cougars the ball back with five min­utes re­main­ing. How­ever, a Bryce Lauletta (20-for-34 for 184 yards) pass was in­ter­cepted by PV se­nior line­backer Ryan McCourt, who then raced 40 yards to put the cap­per on the Vik­ings’ vic­tory.

“I thought we dom­i­nated the line of scrim­mage but they made a lot of good passes and made

a lot of good catches,” Downingtown East head coach Michael Matta said. “Not only do they have a great quar­ter­back but they have a hand­ful of re­ally good re­ceivers. We’re not a team that’s go­ing to outscore you. That’s a prob­lem. We had them in third in long a cou­ple times but we just couldn’t get them off the field.”

GOOD JOB D >> Downingtown East pres­sured Sturm all game and fin­ished with five sacks in the loss. How­ever, the de­fen­sive stand of the game came from the Vik­ings’ D on the game’s third pos­ses­sion. Af­ter East forced a strip sack of Sturm and re­cov­ered at the PV 24, the Vik­ing de­fense kept East off the board, forc­ing the Cougars to turn the ball over on downs af­ter an in­com­plete pass on fourth and five.

MOVE THOSE CHAINS >> Both teams fared well on third down. Downingtown East fin­ished 8-for-17 while PV fin­ished 8-for-14, two of those con­ver­sions on third and 10 or more.

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