LOWER POTTSGROVE >> Entering Friday night, Isaiah Glover could be classified as ‘The Other Isaiah’ in the Pottsgrove backfield.
Yet on this particular night, the senior emerged in the biggest way.
With Isaiah Taylor, the Falcons’ lead back — and the area’s leading rusher — unavailable for the game, Glover racked up 208 rushing yards and three touchdowns in his place to lead Pottsgrove over Phoenixville 31-0 in both teams’ Pioneer Athletic Conference Frontier Division finale.
“It was a lot of fun being out there with my teammates and being with the offense consistently,” said Glover, who had 231 rushing yards on the season entering the night. “It was all because of the line; they got the push for me. They should be the ones doing the postgame interviews. It was all because of them.”
With the win, Pottsgrove completes an unbeaten run through the Pioneer Athletic Conference’s Frontier Division at 5-0 (9-0 overall) for the second straight season. The Falcons will host Liberty Division champ Perkiomen Valley — a 27-20 winner against Spring-Ford on Friday night — in next week’s PAC championship game.
“We’re ready for the challenge up ahead,” said Glover. “We have to go out there and treat it like any other game. We have to go out there and act like we haven’t clinched anything.”
Glover rushed for Pottsgrove’s first two scores on the night, capping an 8-play, 70-yard drive with a 17 yard carry into the end zone to open up the game before breaking loose for a 67-yard scoring scamper early on in the second quarter.
Quarterback Jay Sisko was a threat to run it all night, breaking loose for 98 yards on eight carries, including a 35-yard touchdown rush to make it 21-0 in the second quarter.
He also made one of the most impressive plays of the night.
With 11 seconds left in the first half and the Falcons facing 4th-and-3 from Phoenixville’s 36-yard line, Sisko broke loose for a 25-yard gain, then had the awareness to step out of bounds with 1.2 seconds left on the clock at the 11-yard line. That enabled Michael Sereny to boot a 25-yard field goal to send the Falcons into the half with a 24-0 lead.
After a scoreless third quarter that featured three punts, Glover put an end to the game’s scoring with a 6-yard carry though the middle for his third touchdown and to make it 31-0.
“He filled in admirably for us tonight,” said Pottsgrove head coach Bill Hawthorne of Glover. “He’s such an unselfish kid. He could be in the backfield for us, but he’s a very important part for our defense. He sacrifices and allows other people to play back there (on offense).”
Pottsgrove’s defense put up its most dominant performance of the season on the way to its fourth shutout. The Falcons limited Phoenixville to just 77 yards of total offense and kept the Phantoms from crossing midfield all night.
Phoenixville’s shifty running back Alex Washington was held in check, with just 24 yards on nine carries while bruising fullback Travis Pannella had 30 on seven carries. Quarterback Connor Patania completed five of 12 passing attempts for 38 yards, but was sacked once by Darrian Seaman and had a pass intercepted by Khaliym Smith.
Phoenixville head coach Don Grinstead, who spent time as head coach at Pottstown a few years back, knew the challenge that was in front of him Friday night.
“They do what they do,” said Grinstead of Pottsgrove. “They’re good at it and they’ve been good at it for about 25 years. Until somebody catches up and punches the bully back in the mouth, that’s what’s gonna happen.
“They’re the standard in our division. I think for our kids this is a good opportunity to learn how far away we are in some regard. We’ve taken a lot of strides this year, but we’ve still got some steps to climb.”
Washington and Pannella have been solid for the Phantoms, both hovering among the leaders in the area’s rushing leaders list while Patania has made strides as a senior under center.
Now as his team eyes a trip to the PAC championship game, Hawthorne knows that the biggest challenge of the season will come at Rick Pennypacker Field this Friday night.
“We’re gonna be the David in the battle, no matter how you look at it,” said Hawthorne, referencing David & Goliath. “So, we’re gonna show up and we’re gonna play some tough football. I’ll tell you that.”
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