QUAKERTOWN >> Football coaches are in a constant state of preparation. Plays are being scripted on offense, schemes are being developed on defense, and execution in being perfected on special teams. All in an effort to take out the guess work and give a team the best chance to win.
And all that preparation trickles down, right to the coin toss.
“If we win the coin toss…I’m a defer guy,” Quakertown head coach George Banas said. “I know (Bill) Belichick likes to do the same thing.”
The Panthers took full advantage of the toss, scoring on the final drive of the first half and the opening drive of the second. It was all the momentum they needed in a 21-7 win over Upper Moreland Friday night.
“To me it’s smart, being a defensive-minded coach,” Banas said. “You try to score before the half and then you know you’re getting the ball in the second half. It could be a 14-point swing.”
This time around the two-score swing was led by Christian Patrick, who scored both touchdowns.
“I think in the second half everyone was just fired up,” Patrick said. “The other team was getting tired and we just had a better mindset and kept driving down the field.”
The sophomore running back finished the game with 15 carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns.
Quakertown’s offense is at its best when the threat of the pass is looming. Quarterback Austin Clarke was able to loosen the Upper Moreland defense early with the pass, opening lanes for Patrick and company on the ground. Quakertown (3-5, 3-2 SOL American) finished with 181 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 29 carries as a team.
Patrick’s backfield mate on Friday was Nick Lefkoski, who ran for 64 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries. The senior filled in for lone captain Noah Wood, who is normally a two-way and special teams player but was banged up and focused on just defense Friday night.
A Bear of a time on offense
While Quakertown was clicking, Upper Moreland was in more of a mire on offense. The Golden Bears managed just 161 yards of total offense in the game.
The tone was set early, when each of the first two UM drives ended deep in Quakertown territory on failed fourth down attempts. The second stop came on fourth and inches, as the Panther defense rose up and dropped Bears’ running back Sterlen Barr Jr for a loss.
“We tried to keep him inside the tackles, tried to keep the edge real hard and not let him get outside,” Banas said. “If he’s in space he is shifty and tough to tackle.”
Barr did find some success, rushing for 70 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries. He also caught two passes for 49 yards, with 44 of it coming on one play.