Potts­grove pitches sec­ond shutout

Fal­cons have look of fu­ture cham­pi­ons on Past Cham­pi­ons Night

The Community Connection - - SPORTS - By Rob Se­nior For Dig­i­tal First Me­dia

On an evening des­ig­nated to cel­e­brate the pro­gram’s sto­ried his­tory, Potts­grove foot­ball fans got their first look at a team that looks poised to add its own chap­ter.

Quar­ter­back Jay Sisko ac­counted for four to­tal touch­downs (three rush­ing, one pass­ing), and Rah­sul Fai­son ran wild for 235 yards and two touch­downs as the Fal­cons rolled to a 56-0 vic­tory in their home opener over Methac­ton.

Be­fore the game, Potts­grove cel­e­brated “Past Cham­pi­ons Night,” as rep­re­sen­ta­tives of past cham­pi­onship teams were hon­ored on the field. Those who stayed for the game got to see a team with a great chance to join those ranks.

Fai­son, who rushed for over 2,000 yards in 2016, showed his power early by car­ry­ing for 63 yards on five rushes be­fore Sisko opened the scor­ing on a 10-yard scam­per. The ju­nior QB would add an­other score on the ground be­fore air­ing one out to Des­mond Austin to give the Fal­cons a 21-0 lead after one quar­ter.

Fai­son took over in the sec­ond quar­ter, rack­ing up touch­downs from 25 and 65 yards re­spec­tively, be­fore Sisko added his 3rd rush­ing score on the play of the night. Flushed from the pocket on a bro­ken play, the QB re­treated sev­eral yards be­fore cut­ting down the side­line, evad­ing at least two tack­lers and tum­bling in for the score.

“Once the play broke down, I re­ally didn’t know what to do,” Sisko ad­mit­ted, “so I fig­ured I might as well make some­thing out of it. Once I got out­side, I just did what I could.”

The night was com­plete for Sisko, Fai­son and the rest of the Fal­cons’ starters at half­time, but not be­fore the dy­namic duo com­bined for al­most 300 yards on the ground and six of their team’s seven first-half touch­downs. Javon Col­bert con­trib­uted the sev­enth, tak­ing the ball over just be­fore half­time from seven yards.

In all, Fai­son car­ried 15 times for 235 yards and the two scores. Sisko com­pleted both his passes, in­clud­ing the TD pass to Austin, and scored on all three of his car­ries, com­pil­ing 60 yards in the process.

After half­time, Potts­grove demon­strated its depth, when sopho­more Isa­iah Tay­lor took a carry around left end for a 56yard touch­down run of his own to close out the scor­ing.

For Methac­ton, Joseph Costello gave the War­riors strong start­ing field po­si­tion for most of the night, but the Potts­grove de­fense — led by line­men Ephraim HurtRam­sey and Michael Dickey — never al­lowed the Methac­ton of­fense to get into a rhythm.

“Our de­fense is good — and they should be, with eight start-

ers back from last year,” said Potts­grove coach Rick Pen­ny­packer. “But I’m proud of two shutouts (Potts­grove took down West Catholic, 14-0 last week) to start the sea­son.

“At the same time, I know there are some tough games com­ing up, and we’re go­ing to need to be even stronger.”

Methac­ton used the sec­ond half to get some younger play­ers game ex­pe­ri­ence, with sopho­mores Dy­lan Schultz and Nick Han­son con­nect­ing for con­sec­u­tive first down passes in the fourth quar­ter. The War­riors ad­vanced well into Potts­grove ter­ri­tory late in the game, but penal­ties were their un­do­ing.

“It means a lot to me, to see the way we came out and han­dled our busi­ness in the sec­ond half,” said Methac­ton coach Paul Lepre. “Not only are we young, we’ve got some first-time se­niors play­ing for us ... it takes time to gel.”

“We’re for­tu­nate, in a way, to see a team like Potts­grove early. My guys had the op­por­tu­nity to mea­sure them­selves against a great team, and now we know where we’ll need to im­prove in or­der to com­pete.”

For Potts­grove, it was a night to cel­e­brate what was — and look for­ward to what might be.

“Our play­ers un­der­stand the pro­gram’s his­tory,” said Pen­ny­packer. “They know they didn’t build this pro­gram, they in­her­ited it. They un­der­stand the tra­di­tion that’s here, and it means a lot to them to see those guys come back.”

The way they’re go­ing, some day the 2017 Fal­cons may be walk­ing right be­side them.

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