DOWNINGTOWN- The Downingtown East Cougars shook off a tough first half and scored 27 unanswered points in the second half as the Cougars downed a tough Kennett squad, 41-7, in a nonleague matchup at Kottmeyer Stadium Friday night.
The game saw the return from injury for Downingtown East (4-1) quarterback Jamy Jenkins, who threw for 219 yards and three touchdown passes.
The Cougars also got a 242 yard rushing performance from senior Bo Horvath as Downingtown East piled up 536 yards of total offense in the decisive win.
“I want to give a lot of credit to Kennett,” Downingtown East head coach Mike Matta said. “They came out with a great scheme and they are tough kids that are coached very well. We worked on some things at halftime and our offensive line imposed their will in the second half. and getting number 15 (Jenkins) back was also a big plus for us.”
Kennett (3-2) scored first on a tipped pass that ended in the hands of Ian Guyer who rambled 63 yards for a touchdown and an early 7-0 Blue Demons lead. After one period, Kennett held a 7-0 lead and it looked like the Blue Demons were up to the challenge the powerful Cougars posed.
But, Downingtown East got untracked in the second period when Jenkins hit Erik Thelander, who was wide open, for a nine yard touchdown pass and the games tied at 7-7 early in the second period.
The Downingtown East defense, led by Owen Lammy, held the Kennett offense to just 98 yards of total offense for the game and the Blue Demons star running back Justin Sparacino was held to 45 yards rushing on 25 carries. Kennett only garnered five first downs for the game.
The Cougars took the lead going into halftime when Horvath capped off a long Cougar drive with a two yard plunge and it was a 14-7 Downingtown East lead at halftime.
“We had a little mishap on their touchdown,” Downingtown East cornerback and running back Mike Waite said. “But we got things settled out and our offensive line took the game over in the second half. we knew they were a good team and we were up to the challenge tonight. We played 100 percent Downingtown East football in the second half.”
The Cougars took the opening kickoff of the second half and went 80 yards on just six plays, with Jenkins hitting Tanner DiLullo for 22 yards to the blue demons two yard line. Jenkins then hit Jackson Noble with a two yard touchdown pass and the Cougars were up 20-7 after a missed PAT.
After the Cougars defense forced a three and out, Horvath went untouched down the right side for a 84 yard touchdown run and the rout was on for the Cougars, who ere wearing the Blue Demons out.
Kennett plays almost their entire 11 men on both sides of the football and they could not hold up to the Cougars offensive line in the second half.
Caden Walsh broke free and Jenkins hit him in stride for a 56 yard touchdown pass and the Downingtown East lead swelled to 34-7 with four minutes to go in the third period.
“It really felt good to get back with my team,” Jenkins said. “And the O-Line was great tonight. I had all the time in the world on the pass to Walsh. And our defense played lights out for us too tonight.”
Downingtown East capped off the scoring with a two yard touchdown run from Owen Lammy to end the scoring at 41-7. Matta emptied his bench for the entire fourth period and the Cougars took a knee three times at the end of the game.
“We made it interesting for a half tonight,” Kennett head coach Lance Frazier said. “And they are a two platoon team and we know they are a real power. But, I am proud of my guys effort. They fought the entire game.”
After the impressive win Matta talked about his team and the way he feels about his squad.
“We never lose a game because of the refs or have injuries,’ Matta said. “We lose when we are outplayed or I screw things up.”
Downigntown East 41, Kennett 7.
Kennett 7 0 0 0-7
Downingtown East 0 14 27 0-41
K-Guyer 63 pass from Kauffman (Barker kick)
D-Thelander 9 pass from Jenkins (Blake kick)
D-Horvath 2 run (Blake kick)
D-Noble 2 pass from Jenkins (kick failed)
D-Horvath 84 run (Blake kick)
D-Walsh 56 pass from Jenkins (Blake kick)
D-Lammy 2 run (Blake kick)
First downs 5 21
Yards rushing 25 317
Yards passing 73 219
Total yards 98 536
Passing 2-11-0 12-17-1
Fumbles-lost 3-1 2-1
Punts-avg. 7-41.5 1-37.0
Penalties-yds 3-30 5-45
Rushing: KEN: Sparacino 25-45; Guyer 1-1; Barlow 1-4; Kauffman 4 (-25). DOWN: Horvath 22-242, 2 TD’s; Lammy 8-37, TD; Waite 10-29; More 2-5; Kessler 2-5; Jenkins 1 (-1).
Passing: KEN: Kauffman 2-11-73, TD. DOWN: Jenkins 12-17-219, 2TD’s.
Receiving: KEN: Guyer 1-67, TD; Sparacino 1-6. DOWN: DiLullo 4-50; Thelander 2-24, TD; Noble 3-27, TD; Walsh 2-95, TD; Horvath 1-23.
Sacks: KEN: None. DOWN: Barton.
Interceptions: KEN: Barlow. DOWN: None.