Pennridge shuts down CB South
Micah Stutzman said the plan to slow down Central Bucks South was built around what the Pennridge football team watched the Titans do seven days prior.
“We watched a lot of tape with North Penn (which South beat 36-29 last Friday), and saw that they held (Josh) Adams to under a 100 yards (rushing). CB South kind of beat them on the pass, then,” the junior Ram said. “So we knew that if our line shut down Adams, that our (defensive backs) had to do our part in stopping the pass game.”
Adams went over the century mark and CB South collected a bunch of yards, but the Titans found points much harder to come by Friday night at Poppy Yoder Field.
Pennridge pitched a shutout in the second half and held Central Bucks South to its lowest point total of the season as the Rams won the battle of the final two Suburban One League Continental Conference unbeatens 21-10 for their fifth straight victory.
“We just played a lot of different coverages and tried not to be in the same thing two plays in a row,” Pennridge coach Randy Cuthbert said. “That’s a really good team over there and they’ve had a great year so far, but you know our defense won this game tonight.”
Mike Class scored a pair of touchdowns for the Rams (6-1, 3-0 conference), the second coming on a 70-yard run to make it 21-10 as the clock expired in the third quarter a play after Stutzman intercepted CB South quarterback John Pileggi.
“To be honest, I didn’t expect it at all,” Class said. “They were just firing to the ball all night, and I wasn’t getting that many yards, but eventually I broke out that one and it felt great after I scored.”
Class finished with 228 yards on 28 carries and also caught a 30-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Alex Krivda in the first quarter. For the junior running back, it was the fifth time this season he has collected at least 200 yards rushing.
The Titans (6-1, 3-1) came into Friday night averaging 45.2 points per game, but South went without a point after Evan Stahl’s 27-yard field with 33 seconds left in
the first half cut the Rams’ lead to 14-10.
“I think (defensive coordinator) Bob Rosenberger put a great game plan together, but coming in against a team like that, you’re not expecting to shut them down like that,” Cuthbert said. “The kids did a great job.
“We tried to play multiple coverages. The last couple weeks, we played a lot of man-to-man with no safeties and we didn’t do that tonight. We felt we couldn’t with the running back and the quarterback. We did a little man free, but we played mostly zone and had a lot of key blitzes and auto blitzes.”
Adams paced the Titans on the ground with 114 yards on 26 carries. Pileggi was 12-of-25 for 146 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Cale Mosher led South with 95 yards on six receptions.
Krivda was 4-for-6 for 77 yards, one touchdown and one interception for the Rams. Class was Pennridge’s leading receiver, catching two balls for 40 yards and a score.
Pennridge is back at Poppy Yoder Friday as it hosts North Penn. The Rams have lost seven straight times to the Knights, with their last win in the series coming in 2004 — the last time Pennridge started a season 6-1.
Central Bucks South, meanwhile, looks to bounce back from its first loss Friday at home against Central Bucks East.
On the opening drive of the second half, Pennridge moved the ball down to the South six, but a Krivda pass on fourth down was incomplete. Later in the third, South had a first-and-10 at the Pennridge 40, but Pileggi was picked off by Stutzman at the 30.
One play later, Class went around the left side, found some yards near the left sideline, then cut back into the open field for the 70yard touchdown as time in the quarter ran out.
“It was just a pitch to Mike, we didn’t pull anybody, we were just blocking zone to pick up the blitzes,” Cuthbert said. “He’s fun to watch when you get him in space.”
Looking to get back within one score, the Titans drove to the Rams 18, but Adams was stopped short on fourth down. South got to the Pennridge 41 only to give the ball back to the Rams after three straight Pileggi incompletions. Pennridge ran out the clock from there.
The Rams took a 7-0 lead at 5:25 in the opening quarter, as Krivda finished a nine-play, 53-yard drive by connected with Class down the left sideline for a 30yard.
On its next offensive series, Pennridge made it 14-0 as Kyle Bigam scored on a three-yard touchdown run at 11:25 in the second quarter, ending a nine-play, 89-yard drive.
CB South answered with a 12-play, 64-yard drive, cutting its deficit to 14-7 at 7:13 when Pileggi hit a wide-open Paul Weeks for an eight-yard touchdown. After Pennridge turned the ball over on downs at the Titans’ 21, CB South pulled to within four as Stahl’s 27-yard field goal in the final minute capped a 10-play drive.
Pennridge’s Andy Graff reacts after stopping Central Bucks South on a fourth down attempt during Friday’s showdown at Poppy Yoder Field.