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Football: Bonner’s win over rival O’Hara ‘business as usual’

MARPLE — There might not have been as much on the line in terms of the Catholic League standings as there has been in the years when Bonner & Prendergast and Cardinal O’Hara took out their frustrations on each other.

The pads still were popping, the stares – and occasionally taunts – at fallen opponents were visible, and so many of those who took part in the Friars’ 49-21 victory over host O’Hara went home bruised and sore Friday night.

The Friars (3-1, 2-0 PCL Blue) built a 28-0 lead late in the second quarter and had a 35-7 edge midway through the third. But each time the Lions had the mercy clock staring at them, they bounced back with a touchdown.

“We had some penalties at the wrong time and got a little undisciplined,” Bonner & Prendie coach Jack Muldoon said. “But we regrouped at the right time.

“Mike (Ewing, O’Hara’s first-year head coach) is doing a great job with a very young team. They played very hard, and his Grandpop (former O’Hara head coach Bobby Ewing, who died in 2021) would be very proud of him.”

The Lions (0-5, 0-2) held the Friars to a three-and-out on the first possession of the game, then Lions freshman punter Gavin Mclean got off a 55-yard boot that was downed after rolling to the B&P 1-yard line.

Justin Shepherd needed only eight plays to guide his team to the end zone, with his 32-yard pass to Jalil Hall netting the first six points.

Mylacchi Williams set up the next TD for the visitors with an interception on the second play of the second quarter. Avery Hankey raced 50 yards up with middle on the sixth play after the Williams pick.

A blocked punt put the Friars back in business 14 yards from the end zone a minute later, and Isaiah Session got the first of his scoring runs seven minutes before halftime.

A Mick Johnson hit separated O’Hara quarterback John Welde from the ball, and Shepherd and Zach Coneys teamed on a 20-yard pass play on first down.

“Every year, you know about the Bonner-O’Hara rivalry,” Coneys said. “It just turned out that this was our next game and we wanted our next win.

“(Thursday) at practice, it was the calm before the storm. Coach did his usual thing and gave us his speech. Today it was business as usual.”

Welde (18-for-41 passing for 185yards) got O’Hara on the board just before halftime with an eight-yard completion to Ethan Schulcz (seven catches, 61 yards).

A 22-yard run by Jayln Johnson gave the Friars their only score of the third quarter, in which they did not attempt a pass.

“We couldn’t let anything bother us,” Session, who also had a scoring run in the fourth quarter, said. “We came over here to establish that we were the better team, and our (offensive) line really did a great job and helped us move the ball.”

Welde threw a touchdown pass to Schulcz in the last minute of the third quarter for O’Hara and added a TD run in the fourth after a 49-yard completion from Mclean to Tommy Dugan on a fake punt.

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