Spar­tans earn emo­tional win over Ea­gles

The Colonial - - OPINION - By Den­nis C. Way

dway]jour­nal­reg­is­ Call it divine in­ter­ven­tion. Or maybe just a nice sto­ry­book fin­ish.

Be­fore Fri­day night’s Homecoming game against Nor­ris­town, there was a mo­ment of si­lence to re­mem­ber Spring­field High sopho­more Cole Lux­ton, who passed away ear­lier this week.

So with the game hang­ing in the bal­ance, who was that catch­ing a 15-yard touch­down pass with 8:16 left in the game to se­cure the Spar­tans’ 18-6 win, giv­ing the pro­gram its first Subur­ban One League vic­tory in two decades?

vep, that would be big brother Chase Lux­ton.

Lux­ton’s grab from scram­bling quar­ter­back Chris Stone pushed the Spar­tans up by two touch­downs and en­abled Spring­field to hold off a late Ea­gles charge and earn the his­toric win.

In a crazy con­test that fea­tured the Spar­tans scor­ing two touch­downs on blocked punts, Spring­field sur­vived, in part, be­cause of some heart­warm­ing hero­ics.

“It’s un­be­liev­able,” said Lux­ton, the fo­cal point of an evening drip­ping with emo­tion. “I just can’t be­lieve all of the sup­port and all of the love my fam­ily and I have got­ten this week. I just know (Cole) was in there help­ing me with that touch­down catch.

“I’m go­ing to love him for­ever.”

“We talked to our kids all week about that,” said Spring­field coach Chris Shelly when asked about the emo­tional roller coaster the Spar­tans pro­gram had ex­pe­ri­enced dur­ing the week. “I re­mem­ber watch­ing Penn State play its first game af­ter that scan­dal, and they had so much emo­tion in the first half, but they were drained in the sec­ond half.

“We told our guys they needed to go out and play football, use it as a re­lease, just get caught up in the football game. And when Chase made that catch, you just can’t script some­thing like that.”

Early on, it ap­peared Spring­field may win pri­mar­ily be­cause of a pair of huge spe­cial teams plays.

Nor­ris­town found it­self in an im­me­di­ate hole af­ter choos­ing to re­ceive the open­ing kick­off.

Start­ing at their own 15, the Ea­gles gained just one yard in three plays, then saw Greg Hargray’s punt at­tempt smoth­ered by a trio of Spar­tans and re­cov­ered in the end zone by Phil Ianozi, giv­ing the home team a quick 6-0

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