Lans­dale Catholic falls to Wood

North Penn Life - - Sports - By Kev Hunter khunter@jour­nal­reg­is­ter.com

In­spired play on both sides of the ball nearly brought Lans­dale Catholic all the way back from an early four­touch­down deficit, as the Cru­saders fell 28-14 to Arch­bishop Wood in a Philadel­phia Catholic League Class AAA con­test at Wil­liam Ten­nent High School Satur­day.

“(Part of the rea­son for the come­back) was that their team­mate (Tyler Viers, RB/DL) got hurt, and thank God he’s OK,” LC coach Tom Kirk said. “Kids re­spond in a dif­fer­ent way when they see one of their team­mates is shaken up. We said we were go­ing to play that sec­ond half for Tyler.”

Viers was injured on one of the fi­nal de­fen­sive plays of the first half, and, in a tense mo­ment, was mo­tion­less on the turf for sev­eral mo­ments. The se­nior was taken off on a stretcher, but was seen mov­ing both his arms and legs. The in­jury was be­lieved to be not too se­ri­ous after­wards.

“I heard that he may have just been dinged a bit,” Kirk said. “I don’t want to say he was to­tally ‘fine,’ — you have to be es­pe­cially cau­tious when some­body says they have some neck pain, but he was squeez­ing my hand and mov­ing all his ex­trem­i­ties, so we knew he was OK.”

LC (4-3 over­all and 0-2 in the PCL) bat­tled on, and got to within 28-14 when Pat Duggan scooped up a fum­ble by Wood run­ning back Jar­rett McC­len­ton and raced 15 yards for the score.

“I was on my man, and the line and lineback­ers went in there and popped the ball out,” Duggan said. “It was just sit­ting there. I just ran over and picked it up.”

Duggan’s other score was trick­ier, and it came on the Cru­saders’ fi­nal offensive se­ries of the first half.

The quar­ter­back hung in against the Wood pres­sure and threw a pretty 52-yard strike to wide re­ceiver Michael Jester down the right side­line to get the Cru­saders their first points of the con­test. Jester had got­ten be­hind his man, and as both play­ers went up for the ball, the throw had been placed over the out­stretched hands of the de­fender, and Jester made the catch and raced the fi­nal 25 yards for the score.

“I hon­estly, didn’t see it. I was on the ground,” Duggan said smil­ing. “The line gave me enough time and they gave me enough time most of the night. Mike just went up and got it. That was all Mike.”

“That was a big play,” Kirk said. “That’s Mike’s first touch­down, and he’s done a phe­nom­e­nal job for us block­ing. He doesn’t al­ways get the credit he de­serves, and I’m thrilled for the kid, I re­ally am.”

The Cru­saders’ of­fense was able to move the ball pretty con­sis­tently in the sec­ond half, and both James Ward (11 car­ries for 53 yards) and Kevin Sabo (9/58) did some pro­duc­tive run­ning. LC’s last chance to cut the deficit to seven points came late in the fourth quar­ter, as the drive stopped around mid­field.

The Vik­ings (5-2, 2-0) dom­i­nated early, tak­ing the lead on an 86-yard punt re­turn for a score by An­thony Roakes, and then rush­ing touch­downs by Josh Messina (37 yards), McC­len­ton (29 yards) and An­drew Guckin (one yard) boosted the lead to 28-0.

The Cru­saders shut out the Vik­ings in the sec­ond half, how­ever, forc­ing three turnovers.

“We prob­a­bly were a lit­tle bit too ag­gres­sive in the first half,” Kirk said. “A lot of their big plays were us be­ing in po­si­tion but not mak­ing the tack­les, not wrapping, not be­ing used to the speed of Wood. But then we be­came more dis­ci­plined.”

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