B-A Blue Devils: 6
Friday, October 8, 2004 • Philipsburg, Pennsylvania
By Bob Miller | Daily Herald Sports Editor
Bellwood-Antis had trouble stringing positive plays together on Friday night at Philipsburg’s Memorial Stadium, so the Blue Devils just waited for the Mounties to accomplish what they weren’t able to do themselves. When the game was still knotted at 0-0 with neither team able to put any points on the scoreboard, suddenly Bellwood-Antis only had to move the ball 10 yards to score. Sophomore tailback Josh Kleinfelter took just one play in the first overtime to get outside around the left side to score a touchdown from the 10-yard line to give Bellwood-Antis a 6-3 win.
— Philipsburg-Osceola, celebrating Senior Night before the start of the game, had taken a 3-0 lead on their possession in the overtime on Lou LaFuria’s 21-yard field goal, but couldn’t keep Kleinfelter in check from short range.
— “We had some offensive plays,” said head coach John Hayes, “but Philipsburg has such a great defense. They are strong and have such great speed. They go to the football well. We could make some plays, but we had trouble stringing them together for a long period of time. Probably the best thing that could happen, did happen. We got down to the short field. I was concerned after they got the big gain on first down, but then our kids hung in like they did most of the night. We had a chance and my thought was to catch them in the jubilation of putting the points up and then trying to trip quick. If it works, it’s great. I was truly ecstatic about the way the kids played all the way through much of the game.”
— The two schools battled back and forth. Each had their chances, but defense stepped up and stopped any chance of scoring in regulation.
— The Mounties began the ballgame by marching from their own 24 to the BA-39, before Blue Devil cornerback Derrick Hoffer outjumped a Philipsburg receiver for an interception.
— The Blue Devils turned the ball right back to the Mounties a play later when Kleinfelter tried threading between P-O defenders on a pitchout and had the ball stripped in the process. With their backs to the wall with the Mounties having a second and six at the BA-12, Troy Brunner and Adam Martin combined to stop the runner for no gain and then Brunner sacked P-O quarterback Jeff Winters for a seven-yard loss. LaFuria’s 36-yard field goal try was short and wide right and the Blue Devils escaped with no points from the hosts.
— Zach Tomchick connected with Hoffer for 20 yards and a big first down a couple series later to keep a drive alive, but LaFuria intercepted Tomchick’s next attempt to thwart the scoring opportunity at midfield.
— Bellwood-Antis got to the PO-29 in the second quarter, with the help of a 37-yard romp by Kleinfelter, who got loose around left end. That run pushed Kleinfelter past John Graham’s 1964 sophomore rushing record at B-A. Graham rushed for 514 yards as a sophomore. Kleinfelter rushed 16 times for 106 yards to lead all rushers in the game, and now has 90 carries for 603 yards in his first varsity season.
— After making a 40-yard field goal and having it called back on a penalty, Philipsburg got to the BA-4 as the first half ended on a Winters to Ryan Mostyn pass completion, but time expired on the play.
— The Mounties controlled much of the second half, but couldn’t punch in any points. Near the end of the third quarter, P-O began at their own 25, when a controversial call by the officials fueled a drive that stretched all the way to the BA-6. Winters went to the air on the first call of the series. The B-A secondary deflected the ball and linebacker Tony DelGrosso made a diving interception that would have stopped the march on the initial play. Bellwood-Antis was called for pass interference on the play however, much to the dissatisfaction of the B-A fans and coaches, who seemed to have a perfect view of the play. Philipsburg-Osceola took advantage of the call to continue down the field. With a first-and-goal at the BA-8, the Blue Devil defense stopped the Mounties on a three-yard gain and one-yard loss and then B-A cornerback Derrick Hoffer played the passing lane perfectly and came up with an interception at the BA-1.
— The two teams traded series until the Blue Devils took over at their own 39 with exactly two minutes to play in regulation. On the first play, Bellwood-Antis coach John Hayes went to the trick book. Tomchick fired a pass to Dan Kovac for a pickup of six yards and Kovac then worked the hook-and-ladder play by pitching the ball outside to Kleinfelter. The play was well covered by the P-O defense, but Kleinfelter picked up five more yards and moved the chains for a first down. Kleinfelter then slipped through a crease in the line and scooted for 11 more yards a play later. Racing the clock as well as the Mounties, Bellwood-Antis quickly moved to the PO-17 with Tomchick, who connected on six of 13 passes for 63 yards, completing a toss over the middle to junior tight end Troy Brunner for 18 yards. Bellwood-Antis, who hurt themselves several times with key penalties at crucial times, was flagged for five yards, pushing the ball back to the BA-22. After an incompletion and six-yard gain for Kleinfelter, the Blue Devils went for a 33-yard field goal on the final play of regulation with two seconds showing on the scoreboard. Evan Celmo’s line-drive kick was off to the left to send the game into overtime.
— Ryan Mostyn led the Mounties rushing attack with 20 carries for 75 yards and fullback Ryan Marcinko added 30 yards on nine carries. Winters, who had passed for 609 yards and seven TDs coming into the game with just three interceptions, finished eight of 15 for 83 yards and two picks. Mostyn picked up seven yards on the first play in overtime, but the B-A defense wouldn’t allow the Mounties to get any closer and LaFuria booted the field goal for the first points of the game.
— “This was a great win,” offered a hoarse John Hayes. “I can’t say enough about how the kids hung in there. We played so much of the game on our end of the field. That was really tremendous pressure on our defense. But we didn’t break, it was just an outstanding effort.”