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Pottsgrove controls second half to down Pottstown, 27-7

LOWER POTTSGROVE >> After losing two straight on the road, Pottsgrove wanted to get back on track at home Friday night at Pennypacker Field, especially against neighboring rival Pottstown in the Pioneer Athletic Conference Frontier Division opener for both teams.

It took awhile for the offense to accomplish much of anything against an aggressive Trojan defense. But Pottsgrove eventually got its running game going, mixed in some key passes and shut down the Trojan offense in the second half for a 27-7 win.

Riley Delp caught two touchdown passes from Gabe Rinda and Anthony Mayes ran for 96 yards for the Falcons (3-2). Nazhier Booker rushed for 38 yards and gave Pottstown (1-4) an early lead with a 1-yard scoring run.

“We were 2-0 at home. The last two weeks, we haven’t played Pottsgrove football,” said Delp, who scored on a go-ahead TD pass in the last minute of the first half and made it 20-7 early in the fourth quarter on another toss from Rinda.

“It was a fantastic game,” said Falcon coach Bill Hawthorne. “I give credit to Pottstown.”

After neither side could make a dent in the other team’s hard-hitting defense on their opening two possessions of the night, Booker ran 11 yards for the first first down by either team and finished up a 45-yard drive with his short burst up the middle into the end zone with 2:03 remaining in the first quarter.

Pottsgrove immediately countered with a 68-yard march, topped off by a 1-yard sneak on fourth down by Rinda. Then the defenses regained control and it appeared as if the teams might go into the locker room at halftime in a 7-7 game.

But Bryce Caffery set the Falcons up deep in Trojan territory with a 46-yard punt return and Rinda found a wide-open Delp for a 17-yard scoring pass with just 38 seconds remaining until the intermission.

The Falcons followed that up with a 73-yard drive, mostly on runs by Mayes, to the Pottstown three to begin the second half.
“That was the drive that I thought set the tone for the game,” said Hawthorne.

And though that scoring opportunity ended with a lost fumble, it allowed Pottsgrove to control the field position for the remainder of the quarter and into the fourth, eventually resulting in Rinda’s 11-yard TD pass over the middle to junior tight end Delp.

After that, Pottsgrove continued to control the ball, mostly thanks to the running of Mayes and the work of the offensive line.

“Anthony Mayes took over the game,” said Hawthorne. “He did an excellent job keeping his eyes up. And Jake Palladino did a heck of a job blocking. At the half, we challenged the offensive line to do what a Pottsgrove offensive line does. Give Pottstown a lot of credit. They did a lot of good things.”

Meanwhile, the Falcon defense forced punts on Pottstown’s first three drives of the second half and took over on downs late in the game to wrap up the win.

“We were really making our reads good,” said Delp, who plays middle linebacker on defense. “And the line did all the work for us. We just had to make the tackles.”

Pottsgrove lost three fumbles, but its defense forced seven punts and the Trojans hurt themselves with 12 penalties.

Rinda finished up with 7-of-13 passing for 115 yards, including a late 10-yard scoring pass to Christian Tibbs and completions to five different receivers. Delp had three catches for a total of 70 yards.

“We have a lot of receiving depth this year, so we can have fun with the playbook,” said Delp.

Pottsgrove 27, Pottstown 7

Pottstown 7 0 0 0 – 7
Pottsgrove 0 14 0 13 – 27

SCORING
First quarter
PT-Booker 1 run (Rodriguez kick)
Second quarter
PG-Rinda 1 run (Tice kick)
PG-Delp 17 pass from Rinda (Tice kick)
Fourth quarter
PG-Delp 11 pass from Rinda (kick failed)
PG-Tibbs 10 pass from Rinda (Tice kick)

TEAM STATISTICS
                    PT     PG
First downs 2    13
Rushes-yards 30-54 47-134
Passing yards 21 115
Total yards 75 249
Passes 4-8-0 7-13-0
Fumbles-lost 1-1 4-3
Punts-avg 7-28.1 2-32.0
Penalties-yards 12-128 6-65

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Rushing
Pottstown: Booker 10-38, 1 TD; Oister 12-9; Bostic 2-10; Thomas 3-0; Winfield 2-0; Mundo 1-(-3). Pottsgrove: A Mayes 22-96; Cook 10-22; Caffery 2-19; Gale 2-3; Rinda 11-(-6), 1 TD.
Passing
Pottstown: Oister 4-8-21. Pottsgrove: Rinda 7-13-115,3 TD’s.
Receiving
Pottstown: Booker 1-8; Bostic 1-7; D Mayes 1-5; Winfield 1-1. Pottsgrove: Delp 3-70, 2 TD’s; Miller 1-17; Tibbs 1-10, 1 TD; Allen 1-9; Caffery 1-9.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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