The beauty is in the balance.
North Penn’s offense is scoring plenty and utilizing the skills of many, coming off an impressive 48-7 win over Unionville that has the Knights poised for a
District 1-AAAA quarterfinal rematch with Downingtown East.
Heading into Friday’s contest, the Knights have been piling up yardage on the ground and through the air, including 293 rushing yards in the opening-round playoff win over the Indians.
“The line does an awesome job every single week,” said running back Nick Isabella, who rumbled for 104 yards and three scores last week. “We just see the hole and we hit it.”
The Knights are turning those gains into big plays — NP had seven runs go for 10 yards or more last week, including Isabella’s 23-yard score that helped put the game away in the third quarter.
Success on the ground is mirrored through the air — quarterback Reece Udinski completed 11 passes to six different targets, including a pivotal 24-yard touchdown strike to Ricky Johns that extended the Knights’ lead to 28-7 just before halftime.
Unionville had tightened the contest to 20-7 with just 26 seconds left to go in the half. It seemed the Indians would be going to the locker room with some momentum, but instead, the Knights responded with a huge kickoff return by Justis Henley, and needed just one play for Udinski and Johns to work their magic.
“We still had motivation to put them away,” Isabella said of the final possession before halftime.
In addition to the huge performances by Nyfease West (115 yds rushing/14 receiving) and Isabella (104 yds rushing/27 receiving), the Knights displayed their depth in the backfield when Dontae Stewart took advantage of his three carries, gaining 11 yards and moving the chains on a TD drive in the third quarter, and when Tyler Gillett showed off his breakaway speed, racing 38 yards for a score.
Justin Ostopowicz (5 receptions/48 yards) is not only a tough runner and solid receiver out of the backfield, he also made a tough catch along the sideline, bringing it in for a 12-yard gain on 3rd-and-8, deep in Unionville territory in the second quarter.
Asked if the practices during the week gave any indication that the team was in for a big night, Isabella responded: “We just worked our hardest, like we do every single week. We come out and do what we do.”
The Knights are ready for more of the same this week, gearing up for Friday’s trip to Downingtown East.
“We just have to go practice every day and work our butts off,” Isabella said.
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