Pen­nridge pulls away Irop 4udnhrwown

News-Herald (Perkasie, PA) - - OPINION - By An­drew Mar­cus

A lot has been made of the predica­ment the Pen­nridge foot­ball team was in last wHHNHnd. 7KH 5DPs KDd Wwo games in three days, which cer­tainly is a chal­lenge.

BuW WKis 7KDnNsJiYinJ WKH 5DPs wHrH WKDnNIuO Wo KDYH the op­por­tu­nity to clinch the OHDJuH WiWOH DJDinsW 4uDNer­town and reach the Class AAAA District One ti­tle game with over Spring-Ford on Satur­day.

Ev­ery­one wanted to weigh in on the im­por­tance of an out­right Sub­ur­ban One LHDJuH ConWinHnWDO ConIHrence Cham­pi­onship. Many wanted to bring an 83-year tra­di­tion to a halt to fo­cus on dis­tricts. How­ever the firsW JoDO WKH 5DPs PDdH this sea­son was to win a league cham­pi­onship. So on 7KDnNsJiYinJ Porn­inJ WKH 5DPs roOOHd ouW WKH firsW team of­fense and de­fense and cap­tured a 28-13 win oYHr WKH 3DnWKHrs Dnd iWs firsW

league ti­tle since 2004.

“It was im­por­tant for the se­niors,” Rams’ coach Randy Cuth­bert said. “I am not go­ing to tell them they can­not play against Quak­er­town. And win­ning the OHDJXH wDs WKH firsW JRDO wH talked about at the be­gin­ning of the year.”

There was one glar­ing ab­sence to the Rams’ of­fen­sive at­tack. Ju­nior run­ning back Mike Class was side­lined with what Cuth­bert called, “rest­ing,” how­ever he would not guar­an­tee the 2,000-yard rXsKHr wRXOG bH RQ WKH fiHOG Satur­day in the district semi­fiQDOs.

“We have some great play­ers that may not be the head­line grab­bers like Mike is,” Cuth­bert said. “The num­ber one thing is safety and health. He has a lot of foot­ball left and we are not go­ing to rush him back. We are go­ing to need ev­ery­one to step up and ex­e­cute.”

Se­niors henny Craw­ford and John him saw an in­creased work­load with the ab­sence of Class. him racked up 79 to­tal yards and found the end zone twice, one run­ning and one re­ceiv­ing. The full­back Craw­ford car­ried 20 times for 91 yards and pow­ered his way into the end zone from four yards RXW. AIWHr WKH 3DQWKHrs fiQisKHG WKH firsW TXDrWHr wiWK D 6-0 lead, Craw­ford’s sec­ond TXDrWHr SOXQJH SXW WKH RDPs on top and they never looked back.

“WH FDPH RXW flDW DQG iW was ob­vi­ous,” Craw­ford said. “They wanted it, but wH rHJrRXSHG DIWHr WKH firsW se­ries and came to­gether. It was a lot of fun get­ting the ball and help­ing the team win.”

The Rams even­tu­ally pushed the score to 28-6 be­fore the Pan­thers’ Mike Sawyer broke away from the Rams’ sec­ond team de­fense for a 70-yard catch and run in the fi­nal minute of play. The Rams’ of­fense may have been miss­ing Class’ 31 rush­ing touch­downs, but the de­fense was in­tact and its per­for­mance was what they have to come to ex­pect. A trio of se­nior de­fend­ers forced the Pan­thers to scram­ble all morn­ing. hyle Bigam re­cov­ered a fum­ble and Jeremy uan­der and Andy draff each recorded a sack. Other than the 70yard score in the fi­nal sec­onds, the Pan­thers could only muster 22 yards in the sec­ond half.

“We did not make it this far with one man,” Craw­ford said. “We came here as team and our de­fense is play­ing well. We know how to get it done.”

It is de­fen­sive ef­forts like the one this Thanks­giv­ing that the Rams will need to slow down the balanced at­tack of the Rams from Spring-Ford. Whether him is the fea­tured back on Satur­day or he is back to his best po­si­tion as a lock-down cor­ner­back, the RDPs DrH FRQ­fiGHQW WKHy can come out victorious against all odds.

“-RKQ is vHry XQsHO­fisK DQG you need guys like that,” Cuth­bert said. “He plays run­ning back, wing­back, and he is one of the best de­fen­sive backs in the area. Whether Class plays on Satur­day or not, I be­lieve we can still win.”

It is easy to fo­cus on Class’ eye pop­ping num­bers, but the Rams know the rea­son they are the Con­ti­nen­tal Con­fer­ence Champs and in the mix for District One cham­pi­onship is be­cause of their abil­ity to step up when their num­ber is called. him and the Rams are not go­ing to back down now. They are thank­ful for the op­por­tu­nity.

“No one can re­place Class,” him said. “He is the best player in the state. I be­lieve in my abil­i­ties to make some plays and my team­mates be­lieve in me. I am go­ing to get an ice bath tonight, eat a lot of protein, and get some sleep.”

For Mont­gomery Me­dia / SU­SAN KEEN

Pen­nridge’s John Kim rolls over Quak­er­town’s Dan Frasch dur­ing Thurs­day’s an­nual Thanks­giv­ing Day game at Alumni Sta­dium.

For Mont­gomery Me­dia / SU­SAN KEEN

Pen­nridge’s Micah Stutz­man tack­les Quak­er­town’s Pat SanAn­gelo dur­ing Thurs­day’s Thanks­giv­ing Day ac­tion.

For Mont­gomery Me­dia / SU­SAN KEEN

Pen­nridge’s Kyle Bigam tack­les Quak­er­town’s Ma­son Sch­mauder dur­ing the Thanks­giv­ing Day game.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.