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Bellwood-Antis defense turns in shutout, Blue Devils offense does what it has to do


B-A Blue Devils: 14

Bishop Guilfoyle Marauders:0

Friday, October 29, 2004 • Bellwood-Antis Memorial Field • Bellwood, Pennsylvania

By Bob Miller | Daily Herald Sports Editor

Bellwood-Antis won with defense on Friday night against Bishop Guilfoyle at Bellwood Memorial Stadium. The Blue Devils used a devastating defense that kept the Marauders away from the B-A goal line and the offense scored a pair of first-half touchdowns to post a 14-0 triumph.

— The Blue Devils defense was ravished by Tyrone in the season opener, but since then has tossed four shutouts in addition to holding a tough Philipsburg-Osceola team to nothing on regulation and only a field goal in overtime. During the Blue Devils eight-game win streak, the defense has allowed just 46 points. Friday night, Bellwood-Antis came up with five takeaways to key the defensive effort.

— “The defense has been pretty much the signature of this team, this last half of the season,” explained Bellwood-Antis head coach John Hayes. “They have just risen to the occasion and shut people pretty much down. This was a pretty good football team tonight. Guilfoyle is sitting with five losses right now, but if you look at the people they lost to, they are pretty good football teams. Certainly they were not out of this game until our last take-a-knee drive. We just had to play one heck-of-a defensive effort all night long. Our guys came up big. They got us the ball back. They held when Guilfoyle had us deep in our territory. They came up big on several fourth-down plays.

— “We were real concerned about the option coming in, but we stuffed that early and they really didn’t come back to it that much.”

— The Marauders chose to try a squib kick to begin the game. Chris McDaniel grabbed it and Bellwood-Antis took advantage of the opportunity by promptly marching down the field for their first score.

— Travis Ehredt opened the game by bulling for three tough yards, then Josh Kleinfelter slipped through for five more on his first carry of the ballgame and a dozen more yards for a first down a play later. Ian Crist added a four-yard gain and Kleinfelter scooted for nine yards and another first down. Ehredt covered the final 15 yards up the middle for the touchdown and Evan Celmo booted a perfect placement for a 7-0 B-A lead at the 9:02 mark of the opening quarter.

— Bishop Guilfoyle attempted to march down the field in response to the Blue Devils’ score. Tailback Mike Sprouse carried four times for 30 yards and a pair of first downs to get to the BA-35. The defense rose up for the first of many times however. Dan Kovac stayed where he should have been to nail a reverse for an eight-yard loss and good pressure forced an incomplete pass.

— Poor field position after the next two BG punts set the Blue Devils back to their own 13 and five-yard lines to begin series, but the defense never let up, regardless of the situation.

— Late in the second quarter, Bellwood-Antis got the ball at the BA-13. Kleinfelter went over the left side of his offense. Once the B-A sophomore cleared the line of scrimmage, he encountered several Marauders intent on taking him down. Kleinfelter juked the first one and spun 360 degrees away from a second, diving defender, got to the side line and raced 87 yards for the Blue Devils’ second score. As he neared the BG-20 yard line junior teammate Troy Brunner took out the last Marauder giving chase with a monster block from the side to ease the way for Kleinfelter to score. Celmo again booted the PAT to give Bellwood-Antis a 14-0 halftime advantage.

— “There was so much electrifying effort in that run,” said coach Hayes. “The kid could have been down a couple times near the line of scrimmage, but his determination wouldn’t allow it. He has made some plays for us that has picked our offense up and really helped us at times. Certainly getting that second touchdown at that time before the half, made a lot of what we did easier in the second half. I’ll be the first to admit we kind of pulled in the reins a little bit. We tried not to turn the ball over, but still did a couple times.”

— Junior signal caller Kyle Drost gave the home fans a few anxious moments when he went down and had to come out of the game for a few plays. Drost was starting his second straight game with senior Zach Tomchick on crutches and done for the season. Sophomore quarterback Evan Hughes finished the game after getting his first start in the junior varsity game on Monday.

— Bellwood-Antis slowed down considerably on offense in the second half, getting just one total first down on a five-yard run by Hughes and an eight-yard pickup by Kleinfelter. The B-A offense came up with just 13 yards rushing in 18 running plays and two pass completions for another four yards.

— The Bellwood-Antis defense was in control, however, intercepting four passes and recovering a fumble. Derrick Hoffer had two of the picks, giving the B-A senior six for the year. Dwayne Cherry also had two picks, his second and third of the season. Adam Martin recovered a BG fumble late in the third quarter.

— Kleinfelter lead all runners with 143 yards on 18 carries. Overall, the B-A sophomore now has carried the ball 147 times for 956 yards. Josh needs just 44 yards to become the first sophomore ever to gain 1,000 yards at Bellwood-Antis.

— Mike Sprouse rushed for 112 yards on 23 carries for Bishop Guilfoyle. Three different players threw passes for the Marauders, completing a total of just five of 20 tosses for 44 yards.

— Bellwood-Antis picks up 140 points for the win over BG and has the second seed wrapped up in the Class-A playoff picture. According to Hayes, he should know who the Blue Devils first round opponent will be by sometime Sunday. The game will be at Bellwood Memorial Stadium either Friday or Saturday next weekend.

— “We’re all going to be watching the scores to see who comes in where,” said Hayes. “I think with the win, we kind of feel sure that we are at least going to be at home next week. Sunday we will see who the opponent is and start working for next week.”

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