Spring-Ford takes on Owen J. Roberts

Af­ter last sea­son’s let­down, Spring-Ford makes no mis­take at OJR in 30-7 win

The Mercury (Pottstown, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Rob Se­nior For Dig­i­tal First Me­dia

BUCKTOWN » Spring-Ford coach Chad Brubaker didn’t mince words when dis­cussing his team’s 2017 visit to Owen J. Roberts, call­ing the 33-0 set­back a “dis­as­ter.”

Thanks to a sched­ul­ing quirk, the Rams found them­selves back in the same po­si­tion this year — matched up with the Wild­cats at OJR’s Home­com­ing with their un­de­feated Pi­o­neer Ath­letic Con­fer­ence record on the line.

The Rams’ de­fense made sure light­ning didn’t strike twice.

Wal­ter Mol­ishus led the charge with three sacks and com­bined with DJ Fran­cis for an­other that led to a sec­ond-quar­ter safety, and the Spring-Ford of­fense re­cov­ered from a slow start to get

their pay­back, 30-7 over the Wild­cats (5-3, 2-2 PAC Lib­erty) at Henry J. Ber­nat Sta­dium.

“We put in the work. We all shine in our mo­ments,” said Mol­ishus, a 6-7, 295 line­man. “I think ev­ery game we’ve made small im­prove­ments, and we’re peak­ing at the right time.”

It was the fifth con­sec­u­tive win for the Rams (7-1, 4-0 PAC Lib­erty) who put them­selves in po­si­tion for a win­ner-take-all show­down for the Lib­erty Di­vi­sion ti­tle against Perkiomen Val­ley in next Fri­day’s con­test at Coach McNelly Sta­dium.

“Our de­fense, they’ve been strong all year,” said Chad Brubaker, head coach of the Rams. “First game of the year, they got us through (a shutout against Cen­tral Bucks South). Af­ter that, we knew they’d get us through any­thing.”

A de­fen­sive bat­tle for field po­si­tion led to both teams adopt­ing quick-kick­ing strate­gies — first, Spring-Ford’s En­gro’s ef­fort gave OJR a touch­back at their own 20, then Cooper Cham­ber­lain booted the Wild­cats out of trou­ble on 3rd and long.

Af­ter an er­rant snap backed the Rams up to their own 39, the Rams ap­peared to draw first blood be­fore a hold­ing penalty negated En­gro’s TD pass to Dante Bo­nanni.

But the next time the Rams got the ball back, the com­bi­na­tion of Stephen Brill and An­drew Yoon got the Rams into the red zone, where En­gro made the play of the night to get the Rams on the board. Flushed out of the pocket by OJR’s Ai­dan Hay­ward, the ju­nior QB evaded two more tack­lers be­fore find­ing a wideopen Blaize Scar­celle for nine yards and a 7-0 Rams lead.

On the Wild­cats’ next pos­ses­sion, penal­ties back the of­fense up to their own 4-yard line, where Mol­ishus jarred the ball loose from Cham­ber­lain and out of the end zone for a Rams safety, ex­tend­ing the lead to a 9-0 ad­van­tage the Rams would take to the locker room.

For the open­ing half, Spring-Ford limited the Wild­cats of­fense — clearly ham­pered by Mar­cus Martin’s lin­ger­ing knee in­jury — to 52 to­tal yards of of­fense. Martin, not at all him­self on Fri­day night, car­ried only nine times for five yards.

“If it weren’t Spring-Ford, he prob­a­bly wouldn’t have played at all,” of­fered OJR head coach Rich Kolka. “We felt we owed it to Mar­cus to give it a shot, his be­ing a se­nior and a great leader and all.”

En­gro gave his de­fense a lit­tle breath­ing room on the first play of the sec­ond half, keep­ing on a zone read play and ex­plod­ing up the mid­dle for 64 yards and SF’s sec­ond TD of the evening to grow the lead to 16-0. He’d add a sec­ond TD run three min­utes later af­ter Stephen Brill (124 yards rush­ing on the night) car­ried for 28 yards to put the Rams on the doorstep.

En­gro hit Dante Bo­nanni with four min­utes left in the quar­ter from nine yards out for the third score of the quar­ter. Sud­denly, the tight half­time matchup was a 30-point Rams ad­van­tage, and the prepa­ra­tions for Perkiomen Val­ley could be­gin.

The ju­nior QB ended the evening 11-for-16 for 187 yards pass­ing and four to­tal touch­down (two rush, two pass). Blaize Scar­celle was the Rams’ lead­ing re­ceiver with 88 yards, and Brill added an­other 62 through the air.

The Rams al­lowed only 67 yards of to­tal of­fense in the first three quar­ters be­fore sub­sti­tut­ing lib­er­ally in the late go­ing, send­ing them into next week’s di­vi­sion ti­tle show­down on their best per­for­mance of the sea­son.

“We keyed on what we saw on film,” Brubaker sim­pli­fied. “Our de­fen­sive staff did a great job in prepa­ra­tion.”

OJR got on the board with just un­der two min­utes to play as Cham­ber­lain found Dante DeNardo for an 18-yard score.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG - DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Spring-Ford quar­ter­back Ryan En­gro (7) and re­ceiver Blaize Scar­celle (13) cel­e­brate af­ter a Rams touch­down in the third quar­ter against Owen J. Roberts.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG - DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Spring-Ford’s Stephen Brill (20) breaks a tackle for a long gain against Owen J. Roberts.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG - DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Spring-Ford’s Wal­ter Mol­ishus (64) and Natha­nial Ork­fritzRobin­son (88) team up to sack Owen J. Roberts quar­ter­back Cooper Cham­ber­lain Fri­day.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG - DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Spring-Ford quar­ter­back Ryan En­gro (7) is con­grat­u­lated by team­mates af­ter scor­ing a 64-yard touch­down run in the third quar­ter against Owen J. Roberts.

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