Pottsville gets first win of season, tops Daniel Boone 33-22

UNION >> It was a game both teams could have used to get well.

But Pottsville came away from Friday’s Berks Football League game with Daniel Boone looking more the picture of health. The Crimson Tide, winless through its first seven outings this fall, halted that slump with a 33-22 win over a Blazer unit also seeking to put the brakes on a losing skid … albeit four games.

“I’m excited for the guys,” Pottsville head coach Tom McGeoy said after seeing his club (1-4 league, 1-7 overall) set the ultimate winning tone by scoring on its first three possessions of the game.

“We’ve battled all year. We play a tough schedule both within the Berks League and outside it. We had chances to win early in the season, but we couldn’t do it.”

The Tide built on a 21-7 halftime advantage by scoring on successive second-half possessions — both on running plays, and both by players coming off the bench in the late going. Two of its first three TDs came through the air, the first by quarterback Eric Wapinsky and the second by running back Darion Jacoby.

Wapinsky inserted a running touchdown between the aerial scores, part of a Pottsville ground game that showed big-yardage and hard-yardage skills the entire night. The Tide covered 259 yards on the ground — led by Jacoby’s 155 on 19 carries — and got another 62 through the air, Wapinsky gaining 123 on 9-for-11 accuracy.

“We don’t get that every game,” McGeoy said of Pottsville’s rushing success, “so we took advantage of it. Our offensive line has really come along.”

Boone (0-5, 3-5) didn’t get anything going offensively until its fourth touch, Cinque Ramsey going eight yards around his right end with 3:31 left until halftime. Ramsey (21 carries, 54 yards) capped the Blazers’ scoring with a seven-yard burst up the middle with 59 seconds left in the game, after Ryan Okuniewski pulled in a 65-yard pass from quarterback Josh Ehst at the 7:17 mark.

Daniel Boone has been outscored by a combined 109-7 in previous games with Gov. Mifflin and Reading and closed out its home schedule on Senior/Parent Recognition Night — its last two games will be on the road against Hazleton and Exeter.

Ramsey, who gained 54 yards on 21 carries, was the leader of a Blazer ground game that finished with 83 yards. Jake Kuhn (two carries, 43 yards) had the locals’ longest run from scrimmage, a 44-yard burst in the third quarter that got Boone down to the Pottsville 16.

Another highlight for Boone was its kickoff team, which went 2-for-3 in onside-kick success. The Blazers’ Drew Kresge got the ball back for his team after its first two scores, though it was unable to capitalize on the plays by losing the ball on downs each time.

“They were great with their onsides kicks,” McGeoy said. “You have to give credit to them.”

Ehst contributed a respectable passing game, completing nine of 16 throws for 162 yards. A fourth-quarter interception, coming with 5:50 to go and Boone on the Pottsville 43, stopped the Blazers’ next-to-last possession.

On the defensive side, Boone’s Joe Yohn sacked Pottsville reserve quarterback Mike Holobetz on fourth down. Getting the ball back, Boone moved 48 yards on five plays, Ramsey finishing the drive with his second TD of the night.

NOTES >> Boone’s senior football players and marching band members were among the students honored with their parents in the pregame ceremony. … Pottsville racked up a whopping 22 first downs to Boone’s nine. … Wapinsky and Jacoby combined to make the Tide’s passing game go 8-for-8 through the first half. The first miss was by Wapinsky, on his first throw of the second half. … Boone’s third attempt at an onsides kick started out as a do-over, the initial kick deemed to not have gone 10 yards. The second try was covered by the Tide, which had Wapinsky take a knee three times to run out the clock.

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