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Defense rises to occasion for Marple Newtown

TREDYFFRIN TWP. — Conestoga had three pretty good chances to do some offensive damage in the second half against Marple Newtown Friday night at Teamer Field. Each time the Tigers were equal to the task.

Kevin Merrone picked off two passes in the final 4 minutes, 30 seconds, Jake Simpson also had an interception and Marple Newtown made a goal line stand in the fourth quarter to seal a 35-21 Central League victory over the Pioneers.

Simpson’s pick came at the Marple Newtown 32-yard line in the third quarter and with the game tied, 21-21. Conestoga drove to the Tigers’ 3, but the Tigers got a stop of fourth down to keep the score even.

Merrone then set the tone in the fourth quarter. The first of his two picks came at the Marple Newtown 2-yard line. His second sealed the second straight win for the Tigers (4-3 overall, 3-3 Central League). They also forced a fumble in the first quarter, which was returned for a touchdown, and blocked an extra point in the second quarter.

As for the offense, running back Marlon Weathers scored the final three touchdowns for the Tigers. He scored on a two-yard run in the second quater to give Marple Newtown a 21-13 lead, muscled in from three yard out to cap a 99-yard drive with 10:39 left in the game to put the Tigers up for good, 28-21, and then scored on a 50-yard run with 6:55 remaining to make it a two-score game.

Brian Joslin got the Tigers on the board with a four-yard run in the first quarter. Seth Moyer picked up the fumble Ryan Lane forced in the second quarter and returned it 44 yards for a score.

Michael Prestipino scored twice for Conestoga (1-6, 1-5), the first on a 56-yard run in the second quarter and the second on a kickoff return after Weathers’ first touchdown. 

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