FAIRVIEW VILLAGE >> By the end of the first quarter on Saturday morning at Warrior Stadium, Methacton had run only two offensive plays. Normally, that would be a really bad omen.
But incredibly, the Warriors led by 21 at that point after a touchdown on the opening kickoff, a long run and an interception return for a TD. And even though Norristown’s defense kept the Eagles in the game through three quarters, three long pass plays eventually broke the contest open in a 49-14 Methacton win.
Jake Chapman scored on a stunning 92-yard return of the opening kickoff and a 45-yard reception, Wes Conover picked off a pass and returned it 60 yards into the end zone and also ran 55 yards for a score and Mike Wolbers threw for three touchdowns for Methacton (3-2) in the Pioneer Athletic Conference Liberty Division opener for both teams. Jamal Griffin ran for 80 yards and two touchdowns for the Eagles (2-3).
Methacton has not been trying for big plays this season, instead just trying to control the ball and the clock, according to coach Brian Kennedy.
“We’re never going to give back a big play,” he said. “(Chapman and Conover) are two electrifying kids. They work hard in practice. They’re two good kids. But we want to play good solid defense and we want to control the game the best we can with our ground game.”
That didn’t really go all that well as the Warriors – apart from the long run by Conover – gained only 68 yards on 28 other carries against the hard-hitting Eagle defense.
“We should have done better,” Conover said. “We’ve got to keep working day in and day out.”
“It’s not our best game,” Chapman said. “We had two good days of practice. We need to have three. But look at the scoreboard. Forty-nine points … that’s a hard thing to do no matter who you’re playing.”
The Warriors led 21-0 with 2:38 left in the opening quarter, despite gaining only one first down … that on the TD run by Conover. Meanwhile, Norristown had six first downs, including a 22-yard run on a fake punt play.
Methacton increased its lead to 28-0 late in the half on a quick pass over the middle from Wolbers to Tyler Weil-Kaspar that ended up as a 60-yard touchdown.
Then the Norristown defense forced a fumble early in the third quarter and the Eagles drove 20 yards for a score with Griffin running in from three yards. Norristown scored again on a 41-yard drive after a short punt with Griifin scoring from the five to make it 28-14 five seconds before the end of the third.
“Norristown plays hard,” Kennedy said. “They’re going to be an upcoming program. They’re going to win some games.”
“That comes down to discipline,” Chapman said concerning the dwindling lead. “Ultimately, it comes down to us doing our jobs.”
“Sometimes it happens,” Conover said. “We’ve got to never give up.”
The Warriors came right back with a 71-yard drive on their next possession, including a 45-yard pass play from Wolbers to Chapman for the score. Then Wolbers connected with SahBri on a 55-yard TD pass play with six minutes remaining in the contest and Wolbers scored on a 4-yard bootleg to wrap up the scoring.
Wolbers finished 4-for-6 for 178 yards and the three touchdowns.
“Mike probably had the best game of the year,” Kennedy said. “He wants to throw the ball.”
Norristown gained 234 totals yards on 61 plays, but the big plays by the Warriors were too much to overcome.
“Right now, it’s back to the drawing board,” said Eagle coach Joe Milligan. “The defense played well, but you’ve still got to cover. We’ve got to go back to the fundamentals … blocking, tackling and controlling the ball. Coming into league play, it’s a little different.”
Methacton 49, Norristown 14
Norristown 0 0 14 0 – 14
Methacton 21 7 0 21 – 49
M-Chapman 92 kickoff return (Ready kick)
M-Conover 55 run (Ready kick)
M-Conover 60 interception return (Ready kick)
M-Weil-Kaspar 60 pass from Wolbers (Ready kick)
N-Griffin 3 run (Murphy kick)
N-Griffin 5 run (Murphy kick)
M-45 pass from Wolbers (Ready kick)
M-Hill 55 pass from Wolbers (Ready kick)
M-Wolbers 4 run (Ready kick)
First downs 11 8
Rushes-yards 141 123
Passing yards 93 178
Total yards 234 301
Passes 9-23-1 4-6-0
Fumbles-lost 2-0 1-1
Punts-avg 2-27.0 2-25.0
Penalties-yards 6-55 6-50
Norristown: Griffin 17-80, 2 TD’s; Ferrell 17-40; Holmes 3-16; Robinson 4-10 Davis 3-7; Carr 2-6; Dieng
1-(-7); Farrell 5-(-11). Methacton: Conover 4-71, 1 TD; Weil-Kaspar 14-17; Chapman 2-14; Wolbers 3-
11, 1 TD; Ballinger 1-6; Perillo 5-4.
Norristown: Farrell 9-23-93, 1 INT. Methacton: Wolbers 4-6-178, 3 TD’s.
Norristown: Pratt 3-26; Dieng 2-30; Robinson 2-14; Ferrell 1-19; Holmes 1-4. Methacton: Hill 2-73, 1
TD; Weil-Kaspar 1-60, 1 TD; Chapman 1-45, 1 TD.
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