1RRWK 3HQQ RDOOLHS pdsw 6RUGHRWRQ
North Penn was held scoreless for more than three quarters and trailed a playoff-hungry team by 10 points with only seven minutes to play.
But the Knights, like they have done so many times over the past decade, found a way to win.
“I would say it was our heart,” defensive back and ruQQLQJ EDFN 6WHvH GRzur said of what made the difference in a climactic fourth TuDrWHr DJDLQsW 6RuGHrWRQ ArHD 6DWurGDy DIWHrQRRQ. “We knew it was our last game and we just came out all forces in that second half. (Quarterback) Mike (Berstecher) stepped up huge on WKDW fiQDO GrLvH. ,W wDs DPDzing.”
Berstecher’s 3V-yard touchdown pass to Kyle 0DyfiHOG wLWK 2 PLQuWHs, RQH second to play brought the Knights within 10-V with the HxWrD pRLQW WR FRPH. AORQJ with the “heart” that Gozur alluded to, the Knights also had the guts, as North Penn instead went for two followLQJ 0DyfiHOG’s WRuFKGRwQ DQG spHHGsWHr -DPHs DH6LP- one raced around the left end and found the corner to put North Penn ahead for the firsW WLPH, 11-10.
The Knights then recovHrHG D 6RuGHrWRQ IuPEOH DW their own 35 on the ensuing Big Red drive to lock up the 11-10 win and assure that even though North Penn had a rare playoff absence this sHDsRQ, WKH .QLJKWs sWLOO fiQished with a victory.
6RuGHrWRQ (6-4), QHHGLQJ D win to assure a District One
Class AAAA playoff spot, nHvHr trailHG until DH6iPonH founG thH cornHr with only a couplH of PinutHs to play on this blustery day on the turf at 6ouGHrton.
“To bH honHst with you, if wH haGn’t scrHwHG up thH fiHlG goal (on a blocNHG 26-yarG attHPpt in thH first TuartHr), wH probably woulG havH Must NicNHG it,” saiG 1orth 3Hnn coach DicN BHcN, whosH .nights havH finishHG with a winning rHcord in all 11 of his seasons at thH hHlP. “But , thought that play woulG hit. -aPHs PaGH a grHat run. HH PaGH thH guy Piss, ran arounG hiP, anG that’s why wH put hiP in thHrH. HH’s got a lot of spHHG anG , was vHry happy for hiP.”
Big RHG linHbacNHr -arrHtt RHinharG, who haG playHG a trHPHnGous gaPH for 6ouGHrton, was thH last Pan stanGing in thH way of DH6iPonH, anG thH running bacN was ablH to HluGH his tacNlH anG run Must insiGH thH lHft pylon.
AftHr a 26-yarG fiHlG goal by Brandon Mandes had brought thH .nights (6-4) within 10-3 HarliHr in thH quarter, North Penn forced a thrHH-anG-out by 6ouGHrton anG tooN ovHr at its own 26.
BHrstHchHr’s 18-yarG striNH to tight HnG Colton 3ynH on thirG-anG-15 NHpt thH GrivH alive and a nine-yard run by Gozur moved the ball into 6ouGHrton tHrritory.
The Berstecher-to-Pyne thirG-Gown Pagic continuHG, as thH two hooNHG up on third-and-2 to move it Hight yarGs to thH Big RHG 42. AftHr a thrHH-yarG run by Gozur, MayfiHlG poppHG opHn anG BHrstHchHr hit hiP in stride for the score.
,t was thHn tiPH for thH .nights’ GHfHnsH, which haG bottlHG up 6ouGHrton’s running attacN for Post of thH afternoon.
1HHGing to PovH it TuicNly, TuartHrbacN A.-. Curotto wHnt to worN through thH air anG hH coPplHtHG thrHH consHcutivH passHs to his favoritH targHt, .ylH :HngHr, to PovH it to thH 1orth 3Hnn 49.
ThrHH plays latHr, on fourth-anG-3 at thH 6ouGHrton 49, Curotto hit :HngHr for a 16-yarG gain but :HngHr was strippHG of thH ball and North Penn recovered.
6ouGHrton haG built a 10-0 lHaG HarliHr in thH gaPH on a 28-yarG fiHlG goal by -Hff :olf in thH first TuartHr anG a two-yarG run by RHinharG in thH thirG. ThH Big RHG also haG a 28-yarG fiHlG goal blocNHG Must bHforH thH half.