Peter­lin, PV roll in opener

The Phoenix - - SPORTS - By ThomasNash tnash@21st-cen­tu­ry­media. com @Thomas_Nash10 on Twit­ter

Last fall, Cole Peter­lin paced up and down the Perkiomen Val­ley side­line.

While there, he ob­served and he learned.

Through­out the sea­son, he soaked in the lessons of se­nior quar­ter­back Stephen Sturm, one of the area’s all-time best, as the se­nior racked up record­set­ting num­bers while lead­ing the Vik­ings to a Pioneer Ath­letic Con­fer­ence ti­tle as well as to a Dis­trict 1 Class 6A play­off run.

Now, the ball is in Peter­lin’s hands.

And by the looks of it, Perkiomen Val­ley finds it­self in good hands once again.

Af­ter a slow start, ju­nior quar­ter­back Peter­lin and the Vik­ings marched up and down the field on their way to a 38-0 win over Down­ing­town West at Thomas J. Keenan Sta­dium.

“I was ner­vous at first, but a few se­ries in and I felt like I be­longed out there,” said Peter­lin, who, like Sturm, is a left­hander. “It’s a lot to live up to, be­ing be­hind a guy like Sturm. He helpedme learn how to run this of­fense a lot bet­ter than I used to know.”

With the win, Perkiomen Val­ley — ranked No. 9 in Pa. Prep Live’s sea­son-open­ing Top 20 rank­ings — picks up an open­ing-week win for the third straight year.

Down­ing­town West drops its sec­ond straight sea­son-opener af­ter fall­ing to the Vik­ings 42-41 last year. It’s the first time the Whip­pets lost their open­ers in back-to-back years since the 2004 and 2005 sea­sons.

Peter­lin was picked off twice dur­ing the first quar­ter but fromthere got plenty com­fort­able. He fin­ished the night with 161 yards pass­ing while com­plet­ing 10 of his 16 pass­ing at­tempts. He also racked up 151 yards rush­ing on 17 car­ries, bol­stered by a 51-yard keeper for a score mid­way through the sec­ond quar­ter to make it 14-0.

“He han­dled the pres­sure of his first start and this sit­u­a­tion with a lot of poise,” said sec­ond-year head coach Perk Val­ley head coach Rob Heist of his quar­ter­back. “We’ve been talk­ing about that for months — when the lights are on and there are peo­ple in the seats, it’s a lot dif­fer­ent than do­ing it on the prac­tice field.”

All around, Perk Val­ley’s back­field shone brightly through­out the night. PV’s backs tal­lied 264 yards on the ground, nearly sur­pass­ing Down­ing­town West’s to­tal yard out­put (273) for the night.

Se­nior run­ning back Bren­dan Schimpf was elu­sive any time he touched the ball — rack­ing up 55 yards on six car­ries to go along­with 25 yards on two re­cep­tions. Sopho­more Jon Moc­cia had 21 yards on seven car­ries, punch­ing it in from 1- and 4 yards out for touch­downs. Ryan Cerula came up with the game’s open­ing score — a 3-yard carry five min­utes into the sec­ond quar­ter — along with the game’s fi­nal score— a thrilling 102yard in­ter­cep­tion re­turn for a touch­down with 30 sec­onds left to pre­serve the shutout.

On the night, Down­ing­town West sim­ply couldn’t gen­er­ate any sort of rhythm of­fen­sively. The Whip­pets punted away their first six pos­ses­sions, then turned it over on downs their next three pos­ses­sions.

Sopho­more quar­ter­back Wil­lHoward showed poise un­der cen­ter. He fin­ished with 202 yards pass­ing, but cer­tainly could have had more. Howard had a hand­ful of throws deep that just missed the out­stretched fin­ger­tips of his streak­ing wide re­ceivers.

“That’s a pretty good foot­ball team,” said Mi­lano of Perk Val­ley. “They had a kid on de­fense, No. 5 (se­nior line­man Alec Jack­son), that we couldn’t han­dle. He dom­i­nated play for 48 min­utes.”

“Our kids played re­ally, re­ally hard on both sides of the ball,” said Heist, who has known noth­ing but suc­cess as head coach of the Vik­ings.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG - DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Perkiomen Val­ley’s Remy Sell hauls in a long re­cep­tion from quar­ter­back Cole Peter­lin to set up the Vik­ings’ first TD Fri­day against Down­ing­town West.

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