Downingtown East pounds Bishop Shanahan to get to 8-0

DOWNINGTOWN >> Quality football teams learn their lessons. Last week, Downingtown East started very slowly offensively against Coatesville before eventually earning a win. Saturday night at Kottmeyer Stadium, the Cougars started as fast as a new Ferrari as they scored the game’s first 28 points en route to a convincing 34-2 Ches-Mont League National Division victory over Bishop Shanahan.

Downingtown East remained unbeaten at 8-0 and remained in a tie atop the National with crosstown rival Downingtown West at 4-0. The two will meet on Nov. 6

The Cougars churned out 274 yards rushing and another 174 through the air behind the strong arm of quarterback Saunders Healy, who also tossed three touchdown passes. Healy ran for 120 yards, and along with some tough running from Jack Kincade, they racked up 24 first downs.

“Coach (Mike) Matta really got into us this week about starting the game the right way,” Healy said. “We did not do that last week at Coatesville, but tonight, our offensive line was really doing the job. They work so hard and they give me a lot of confidence that we can pick up yardage when we need it.”

The Cougars took the opening kickoff and marched straight down the field behind the Kincade, who had 106 yards, and their favorite play — the quarterback draw. The smaller Eagles (2-2, 4-4) seemed powerless to stop the onslaught. Healy went up the middle for a 30-yard score and a 7-0 lead.

The Eagles fumbled on their first play after the score, and East recovered. Four plays later, Cary Angeline broke out his Odell Beckham imitation, making an acrobatic, one-hand catch for a nine-yard score and a 14-0 advantage.

Shanahan could not move the ball at all as the Cougars defense did not allow an offensive touchdown for the second game in a row. The Eagles punted four times in the first half.

Kincade dove in from the three to cap a nine-play drive to jump out to a 21-0 lead.

“We dug ourselves a big hole tonight, Bishop Shanahan head coach Paul Meyers said. “They are real good and they were too big and strong for us. Give them credit. We could not get anything going.”

On the last play of the first period, Healy threaded the needle to a wide open Ethan Harris for a 19-yard score to put the exclamation point on the dominating quarter.

Shanahan’s only points came on a safety early in the second.

The Cougars held the Eagles to a mere 72 yards rushing and they hit anything that moved.

A fourth-and-10 play in the third may have summed up the defense for the night. Quarterback Nick Skulski hit Josh Burke over the middle for what would have been a first down, but A.J. Gripton unloaded and separated Burke from the football and an incompletion that gave the ball back to East.

Harris finished the scoring in the fourth, taking a pass from Healy and turning it into a 50-yard jaunt into the end zone.

The game was a little disjointed as the officials call 19 penalties, including seven personal fouls calls.

Even that couldn’t keep the Cougars from their task as Matta’s words were ringing in their ears.

“Coach challenged us this week to start fast,” Kincade said. “We got into our tempo and they could not keep up with us. We controlled the tempo and the game tonight.”

Matta was happy with the win which keeps them at the top of the Class AAAA District 1 playoff point race.

“We played real well and started strong,” he said. “I wish Shanahan luck the rest of the way.”

Downingtown East 34, Bishop Shanahan 2

Bishop Shanahan 0 2 0 0 — 2
Downingtown East 28 0 0 6 — 34

First Quarter

Downingtown East — Healy 30 run (Brennan kick)

Downingtown East — Angeline 9 pass from Healy (Brennan kick)

Downingtown East — Kincade 3 run (Brennan kick)

Downingtown East — Harris 19 pass from Healy (Brennan kick)

Second Quarter

Bishop Shanahan — Safety

Fourth Quarter

Downingtown East — Harris 50 pass from Healy (kick failed)

team statistics


First downs 10 24

Rushes-yards 26-72 45-274

Passing 9-22-0 10-20-1

Passing yards 130 174

Total yards 202 448

Punts 6-24.5 2-37.0

Fumbles-lost 3-3 0-0

Penalties-yards 10-90 9-107

Individual statistics

Rushing — Bishop Shanahan: Burke 7-33, Guinan 12-30, Smyth 2-12, Skulski 2-4, Deering 2-(-3), McNulty 1-(-4). Downingtown East: Healy 15-120 TD, Kincade 19-106 TD, Liaudaitis 6-26, Aivado 5-22.

Passing — Bishop Shanahan: Skulski 9-22-0 130 yards. Downingtown East: Healy 10-20-1 174 yards 3TD.

Receiving — Bishop Shanahan: Neuhaus 4-69, McNulty 2-44, Guinan 1-14, Gueriera 1-7, Burke 1-(-4).Downingtown East: Harris 5-93 2TD, Hanford 4-28, Angeline 2-25 TD, Jennings 1-28.

Interceptions — Bishop Shanahan: Deering.


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